A fully-funded Ph.D. position is available in Faculty of Forestry at the University of Toronto. The Ph.D. candidate will examine whether and why increasing the functional diversity of tree species increases the productivity of forests. In particular, the candidate will use national forest inventory data and a trait-based analysis of competition to assess which functional groups of trees are more productive when grown together. Mixtures that may be more productive include needleleaf-broadleaf mixtures, evergreen-deciduous mixtures (including evergreen broadleaf species), and endomycorrhizal-ectomycorrhizal mixtures. Finally, the effect of mixing will be assessed across broad edaphic and climatic gradients in order to determine whether the benefit increases with decreasing productivity, as predicted by the stress gradient hypothesis.
Qualifications: 1) sincere interest in forest ecology, 2) strong quantitative skills, 3) excellent oral and written communication skills in English.
Applicants should send a letter of enquiry and curriculum vitae to John Caspersen (firstname.lastname@example.org; http://forestry.utoronto.ca/caspersen-j/). Applications will be reviewed beginning January 15th, but the positions will remain open until a suitable candidate is selected.