Our Current Team

Elizabeth M Wolkovich – Associate Professor of Forest & Conservation Sciences

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I became interested in winegrape phenology over ten years ago when I heard how diverse winegrapes were in their flowering times. In the following years I developed collaborations and began gathering historical and current data from across the globe. I started working on understanding climate change impacts on winegrape harvests and wine quality in France and collected data in Davis, California. Since then my work has expanded: I now study phenological stages (budburst, flowering, veraison and maturity) and have a general aim to (1) understand and predict impacts on winegrape phenology, (2) to better understand and document variety diversity across the globe, and (3) improve predictions of variety change with continued climate change.

Geoffrey Legault – Former Postdoctoral Fellow — Current Collaborator

I am a statistical ecologist interested in how populations and communities change over time. My current research focuses on developing more accurate models of winegrape phenology (i.e., timing of flowering, veraison) in order to help growers adapt to climate change and maximize harvest quality.

 

Faith Jones – Former Postdoctoral Fellow — Current Collaborator

My background is in assessing global trends in biodiversity change. I have recently started focusing on winegrapes and how their distribution and growth will likely change with climate change. I am especially interested in modelling how hardy winegrapes can get over winter, so we can estimate which cold snaps might threaten grape crops and which areas might be more suitable for growing winegrapes as winters warm. My focus in mostly on the Okanagan wine growing area, which has undergone sufficient warming over the last few decades that new varieties are now able to grow there that were previously not hardy enough for the cold winters. 

Mira Garner – Former Graduate Student — Current Collaborator

I am a master’s student interested in finding practical responses to climate change in viticulture. My research uses winegrape phenology records to understand how climate change has affected the development of vines and berries. This information will help us determine how climate change will impact the suitability of specific wine varieties to their current growth regions, allowing growers to plan for their vineyard’s future climate. I am using historical records from Domaine de Vassal, a research vineyard in Southern France, where they have been collecting phenological data since the 1880’s. In addition, I am collecting new phenological data from the Okanagan Valley in British Columbia to incorporate into my research as well.

Grace Gooding – Undergraduate Researcher

I am an undergraduate student majoring in Environmental Sciences at the University of British Columbia. I am interested in the impacts of human disturbances in the environment, especially with respect to their impacts on biodiversity. Through my involvement in the lab, I hope to gain a better understanding of the research process, as well as improving my data processing skills in ecological research.

Hoai Huong Nguyen Phan– Undergraduate Researcher

I I am an undergraduate student studying Electrical Engineering (Biomedical Option) at the University of British Columbia. The opportunity to join the Temporal Ecology Lab provides me with a better understanding of the path from data to science and decision-making in the real world. This experience also prepares me with transferable skills such as data analysis and communication that I can apply right away to my future pursuit in the biomedical field.

Alina Zeng - Undergraduate Researcher

I am a senior undergraduate student majoring in Urban Forestry at the University of British Columbia. As a firm believer in the partnership between the sciences and the humanities, I appreciate innovative solutions to bridge research and practice. Upon joining the Temporal Ecology Lab, all the strolling around looking at plants that I do will serve a purpose (insert smiley face). I am grateful for a chance to learn and work in our lab to enhance my understanding of terrestrial ecosystems under a changing climate. Meanwhile, I aspire to prepare myself for conducting independent research in my future endeavours around ecology and conservation sciences. 

Dinara Mamatova – Undergraduate Researcher

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I am a senior undergraduate student at The University of British Columbia, majoring in Computer Science. I am interested in data visualization and analysis of the environmental and plant research data. Due to my time at the lab, I’ve had many great opportunities to learn about Bayesian statistics and survival models, work with the lab’s phylogenetic mixed model and study the influence of the ever-changing climate on plant ecosystems and their life events.

Tolu Amuwo – Undergraduate Researcher

I am an undergraduate student studying Environmental Science at the University of British Columbia. I am personally interested in studying global changes in terrestrial ecosystems and what that means for biodiversity and conservation as climate change progresses. Through this opportunity, I aim to develop my understanding of the scientific process and how collaboration within the research field is implemented.

 

Sophia Collins – Undergraduate Researcher

I am an undergraduate student studying Environmental Science and Anthropology at the University of British Columbia. I am interested in the implications phenological shifts have for the futures of ecosystems, and what we can do to address the ramifications of climate change as a whole. Through my involvement with the Temporal Ecology Lab I am hoping to gain a better understanding of the scientific process and how computer software can be used to interpret data.

 

Kristian Blackburn – Okanagan Phenological Sampling Consultant (2022 Season)

Kristian is a certified sommelier hailing from Toronto, Ontario. His passion for food and wine led him to visit Vancouver in 2016 where he discovered the wines of the Okanagan Valley. To further his craft, Kristian enrolled in the Viticulture program at Okanagan College to study wine “from the roots up.” Since then, he has been working in vineyards and wineries throughout the region.

If you would like to see people who have worked on this project  in the past, please see follow this link.