Steve Carpenter


For publications that illustrate my most recent research activities, select "Publications List " from the menu and scroll down to the most recent papers. To request a copy of a particular paper, please email the Center for Limnology library at

My limnological research focuses on the interaction of biogeochemistry and food web processes in lakes. I am especially interested in prediction of lake characteristics from land-water interactions and food web processes, including human effects such as fishing and introduction of exotic species. My research on these topics is connected to the LTER, Trophic Cascade and Water, Sustainability and Climate projects.

I also work on resilience of linked social-ecological systems through collaborations with the Beijer Institute of Ecological Economics, Stockholm Resilience Center and Resilience Alliance. My work in complex systems and early warnings is connected with the Synergy Program for Analyzing Resilience and Critical Transitions (SparcS).

I am helping in the launch of the South American Institute for Resilience and Sustainability (SARAS).

 Teaching Program

My primary teaching assignment is Ecosystem Concepts, Zoology 725, a course about current progress and approaches for fundamental research on ecosystems. In addition I teach graduate seminars. Recent topics have included Ecosystem Services, Writing Science, and two courses on creating and using scenarios for regional environmental change.

Ecosystem Concepts (Zoology 725)