Faculty Directory

Ingrid M. Parker
  • Title
    • Professor
  • Division Physical & Biological Sciences Division
  • Department
    • Ecology & Evolutionary Biology Department
  • Affiliations Environmental Studies Department, Rachel Carson College
  • Phone
  • Email
  • Fax
  • Website
  • Office Location
    • CSC Coastal Biology Building, 260
  • Office Hours Tuesday 12-1, Thursday 2-3, email for Zoom link
  • Mail Stop CBB/EE Biology
  • Mailing Address
    • 130 McAllister Way
    • Santa Cruz CA 95060
  • Faculty Areas of Expertise Ecology, Plant Biology, Conservation, Land Management, Evolution, Population Biology
  • Courses Plant Ecology (BIOE 145), Field Methods in Plant Ecology (BIOE 145L), Plants and Society (BIOE 118), Introduction to Environmental Science (Rachel Carson College), Plant Development and Physiology (BIOE 20B)
  • Advisees, Grad Students, Researchers Sara Eloise Grove, Nicky Lustenhouwer, , Erin Laysh Aiello, Miranda Kathleen Melen

Summary of Expertise

Plant ecology and evolution, invasion biology, plant conservation, restoration

Research Interests

Plant Ecology, Biology Of Species Invasions

I seek to understand what controls plant distribution and abundance, with an emphasis on species interactions. Much of my current work focuses on the evolutionary ecology of plant-insect mutualisms and plant-pathogen interactions.

For many of my research questions I use biological invasions as a tool to study ecological processes. Exotic species, which can be seen as perturbations to natural communities, give us an opportunity to study ecological and evolutionary shifts in response to new conditions and new species interactions. One of my current projects is on the role of pathogens in controlling populations of native vs. non-native clovers on the California Coast. Are introduced species released from the pressure of natural enemies?

Biological invasions are also one of the most urgent conservation issues of our time. I have an interest in both documenting the ecological impacts of particular invasions, and understanding the biological mechanisms behind those impacts. At the interface between science and policy, can we use theoretical ecology to help make better prioritization decisions for species eradication or control? Can we accurately assess the risk of introducing new species (or transgenic varieties)?

Biography, Education and Training

A.B., University of Chicago
Ph.D., University of Washington
Miller Postdoctoral Fellow, Department of Integrative Biology, UC Berkeley

Research Associate, Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute, Panama

Honors, Awards and Grants

Fellow, California Academy of Sciences

UCSC Committee on Teaching, Excellence in Teaching Award

Chancellor’s Achievement Award for Diversity

Fulbright Fellow

First recipient, Jean H. Langenheim Endowed Chair in Plant Ecology and Evolution

Jane Block Distinguished Lecture in Conservation Biology, at The Center for Conservation Biology, University of California, Riverside

Walton Lecture Recipient, Mountain Lake Biological Station, University of Virginia

University of Washington’s first annual “Leaders in Biology” speaker

Ingrith Deyrup Olsen award for distinguished teaching, University of Washington