Search for Academy curators, collections managers, and research staff working to answer some of the world's most pressing scientific questions.
I am the Curator of Geology, and I've been at the Academy since 1999. I hold degrees in Biology (B.Sc.), Oceanography (M.S.) and Geology (Ph.D.). My research is transdisciplinary, with a focus on understanding the evolution of ecological systems, emphasizing paleontology, deep time, and perspectives on complexity dynamics. Most of my research these days centers around global change biology, and how we can further develop our understanding of Earth's past ecosystems to better forecast our future.
I work in the Institute for Biodiversity Science & Sustainability, Center for Comparative Genomics. I provide computing support for our research projects.
Collaborate with biologists to apply cutting edge techniques to questions in evolutionary biology. Keep up with relevant literature. Work with large amounts of DNA data to generate phylogenetic trees, metagenomic analyses, and genome level assemblies. Work directly on research projects and publications. Design visualization and computational approaches, including custom coding as needed.
My ongoing research interests are on moss floristics and basic bryophyte inventory activities. My field work shifted around 1997 from flowering plants to bryophytes with an emphasis in bryogeography through specimen acquisition to expand the diversity of the collections within the CAS herbarium. Thirteen plant species have been named in my honor including seven flowering plants and six mosses including the moss genus Shevockia endemic to Asia.
The Simison lab investigates the processes that generate, maintain, and reduce biodiversity. In particular, we are interested in the process of speciation. We use comparative genomics techniques such as RADseq, Ultra Conserved Elements, transcriptomics, and whole genomes to study the role of admixture and introgression in speciation. We are currently focusing on the globally invasive red eared slider turtle system (Trachemys scripta elegans) native to North America.
My research interest lies in the ecology and evolution of mosquito-borne viruses and spans across scales of the disease transmission. At the community level, I explore how changes in mosquito community diversity, human behaviors, and vector density play a role in driving disease emergence and determining endemicity. At the microbial community level, I characterize the mosquito microbiomes and viromes in relation to the environmental changes to understand how humans may influence virus transmission by changing the natural microbial diversity.