Search for Academy curators, collections managers, and research staff working to answer some of the world's most pressing scientific questions.
My research interests and experience are centered on the evolution, phylogeography (or the geographic distribution of genetic lineages), conservation, biogeography, systematics and community and behavioral ecology of coral reef fishes. I frequently try to combine these fields, invoking ecology to help explain evolutionary patterns and using molecular tools to test biogeographic and systematic hypotheses.
My research focuses on the capacity of benthic marine organisms to cope with changing environmental conditions. Specifically, I have devoted the last ten years to understanding how coral reef organisms are impacted by changing seawater chemistry (ocean acidification), alone and in combination with warming.
My research interest revolves around the key issue of how we became human through evolutionary processes. My research program focuses on the discovery and interpretation of hominin fossils and their environments with emphasis on fieldwork designed to acquire new data on early hominid skeletal biology, environmental context, and behavior. I also employ recently developed imaging and visualization techniques to investigate internal and external fossil anatomies.
Using flowering plants to address questions about plant biodiversity, biogeography, and evolution, I am interested in why some families of flowering plants are so species-rich and the factors that have promoted this diversification. Can certain families of plants be used as indicators of biodiversity hotspots and can this information be useful in conservation decisions? I am also studying species in a megadiverse family of plants like Princess Flowers (Melastomataceae) to determine how they are related to one another and where they fit into the tree of life for flowering plants.
I am an organismal evolutionary biologist and I integrate genomic techniques with field biology to study diversification in amphibians and reptiles. Prior to joining the Herpetology Department at the Academy, I completed a Ph.D. in Ecology & Evolutionary Biology at Cornell University, a Chancellor’s Postdoctoral Fellowship in the Museum of Vertebrate Zoology at U.C. Berkeley, and I served as Curator of Amphibians and Reptiles at the National Museum of Natural History, Smithsonian Institution.
Dr. Bennett is the Chief of Science and Harry and Diana Hind Dean of Research and Collections. She was the Academy's first ever Associate Curator of Microbiology, helping broaden the Academy’s research scope to include a dedicated focus on viruses and bacteria. Her specialty lies in infectious diseases that can be transmitted from animals to humans.
I am a zoologist by training, but since 1990 I have been working full-time in biodiversity informatics – the application of information technologies to biodiversity science. Academy scientists generate enormous amounts of information as they collect, describe, document, and compare organisms. That information comes in a variety of forms, including text, photographs, DNA sequences, taxonomic names, classifications, distributions maps, and ultimately publications.
Dr. Todd Braje is an anthropological archaeologist, associate professor, and Research Associate in Anthropology at the California Academy of Sciences. His research interests include the deep history of maritime migrations and adaptations, human-environmental ecodyamics, and historical ecological approaches to understanding hunter-gatherer-fishers.