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Erle C. Ellis

Ph.D., Cornell University, 1990
211 Sondheim Hall
twitter: @erleellis
google scholar
Highly Cited Researcher (2018, 2019, 2020; Cross Field)


Research Interests

Landscape Ecology, Global Change, Sustainable Landscape Management, Anthropocene

Research Focus

My research investigates the ecology of human-managed ecosystems at local and global scales towards the goal of informing sustainable stewardship of the biosphere in the Anthropocene.

Recent projects

• Anthroecology: A new paradigm for ecology in an anthropogenic biosphere
• GLOBE: Online tools for global synthesis of local knowledge
Ecosynth: Inexpensive tools for scanning landscapes in 3D
• Anthromes (anthropogenic biomes): global analysis of human/ecosystem interactions
• Measuring long-term changes in land use and biogeochemistry across rural China

Selected Publications

Full list & PDF downloads:

BOOK: Ellis, Erle C. 2018. Anthropocene: A Very Short Introduction. Oxford University Press (UK release March 2018, US release May 2018). Part of OUP’s Very Short Introduction Series. [Buy at]

Stephens, L. et al. (ArchaeoGLOBE project; 120 authors)… Ellis, E. (2019). Archaeological assessment reveals Earth’s early transformation through land use. Science 365:897-902.

Ellis, E. C. 2019. Sharing the land between nature and people. Science 364:1226-1228.

Ellis, E., M. Maslin, N. Boivin, and A. Bauer. 2016. Involve social scientists in defining the Anthropocene. Nature 540:192–193.

Ellis, E.C. 2015. Ecology in an Anthropogenic Biosphere. Ecological Monographs 85(3):287–331

Ellis, E. C., J. O. Kaplan, D. Q. Fuller, S. Vavrus, K. Klein Goldewijk, and P. H. Verburg. 2013. Used Planet: A Global History. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 110(20):7978-7985.

Dandois, J. P. and E. C. Ellis. 2013. High spatial resolution three-dimensional mapping of vegetation spectral dynamics using computer vision. Remote Sensing of Environment 136:259-276.

Ellis, E. C., E. C. Antill, and H. Kreft. 2012. All is not loss: plant biodiversity in the Anthropocene. PLoS ONE 7:e30535.

Ellis, E. C. 2011 Anthropogenic transformation of the terrestrial biosphere. Proceedings of the Royal Society A: Mathematical, Physical and Engineering Science 369(1938):1010-1035.

Ellis, E. C., K. Klein Goldewijk, S. Siebert, D. Lightman, and N. Ramankutty. 2010. Anthropogenic transformation of the biomes, 1700 to 2000. Global Ecology and Biogeography 19(5):589-606.

Ellis, E. C. and P. K. Haff. 2009. Earth Science in the Anthropocene: New Epoch, New Paradigm, New Responsibilities. EOS Transactions 90(49):473

Ellis, E. C., N. Neerchal, K. Peng, H. S. Xiao, H. Wang, Z. Yan, S. C. Li, J. X. Wu, J. G. Jiao, H. Ouyang, X. Cheng, and L. Z. Yang. 2009. Estimating long-term changes in China’s village landscapes. Ecosystems 12 (2):279-297

Ellis, E. C., and N. Ramankutty. 2008. Putting people in the map: anthropogenic biomes of the world. Frontiers in Ecology and the Environment 6(8):439-447.


Complete list & downloads

Courses Taught

GES 120: Environmental Science & Conservation
GES 305: Landscape Ecology
GES 405/605: Applied Landscape Ecology
GES 412/612: Biogeochemical Cycles in the Global Environment
GES: 485/685: Field Methods in Geography: Environmental Mapping

As Visiting Professor of Landscape Architecture, Harvard Graduate School of Design
GSD 6241: Ecologies, Techniques, Technologies III