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The Hobbie Lab

Research Interests

My research focuses on three main areas:

  1. the influence of changes in atmospheric composition and climate on ecosystem processes;
  2. the effects of urbanization and suburbanization on biogeochemical cycles; and
  3. the influence of plant species on biogeochemical processes.

In the area of global change, I aim to understand how global nutrient cycles affect carbon cycling; how variation in biodiversity, atmospheric carbon dioxide, nitrogen inputs, warming, and precipitation influence grassland ecosystems; and how warming alters community and ecosystem processes at the southern boreal-temperate forest ecotone. In the area of urban ecology, I am studying the effects of urban and suburban development on biogeochemical cycling. In particular we are focusing on quantifying sources of nutrient pollutants to subwatersheds of the Mississippi River and how nutrients move from land to stormwater. We are also studying the role of human choices in both creating and solving urban environmental problems. In all of this work, the influence of plants on soils is an underlying theme.

Lab News
  • Rachel King and Melissa Pastore have both earned their PhDs during summer 2020! Great work, especially during a pandemic! Rachel is now a postdoc at Smithsonian Environmental Research Center and Melissa is a postdoc at the University of Vermont. Well done!
  • Adrienne Keller has joined the lab as a postdoc. Adrienne obtained her PhD at the University of Indiana, and we're so glad she's joined the lab. Welcome Adrienne!
  • Former postdocs Allison Gill and Ashley Keiser have new faculty positions. Allison is a professor at Williams College and Ashley has a position at UMass Amherst. Congratulations to both, and good luck!

Google Profile and Publications


Ecology, Evolution + Behavior
Cedar Creek Ecosystem Science Reserve
NSF LTER program
Institute on the Environment

Contact information:

Sarah E Hobbie

Professor, Dept. of Ecology, Evolution & Behavior
Office: 502 Ecology
Office Phone: 612-625-6269
Lab Phone: 612-624-7734