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Photo of Ahlswede, Benjamin J.

Benjamin J. Ahlswede, PhD

Postdoctoral Research Associate

Ecosystems, Climate, Land-Cover Change


I study how terrestrial ecosystems affect and are affected by the atmosphere across scales using eddy covariance and global climate models. Ecosystems provide a tremendous climate service by absorbing a third of emitted carbon dioxide annually, but are also the largest source of uncertainty in the annual carbon cycle. Furthermore, changes to the land surface can alter the energy balance of the atmosphere through biogeophysical pathways that are often at odds with the biogeochemical climate services. My research at UIC focuses on the persistence of positive and negative anomalies in growth and transpiration by terrestrial ecosystems using the E3SM global climate model. Better understanding of the processes that drive these legacy effects will allow for more accurate prediction of the global carbon cycle and how terrestrial ecosystems will respond to an increasingly stressful environment.


PhD Forest Resources and Environmental Conservation, Virginia Tech, 2021
MS Forest Resources and Environmental Conservation, Virginia Tech, 2015
BS Biology, Shippensburg University, 2012