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Sigrid Smith, PhD

Associate Professor / Biostatistician
Department of Agriculture and Natural Resources
College of Agriculture, Science and Technology
Delaware State University
ssmith <AT> desu.edu


We welcome undergraduates to participate in research experiences in environmental science with computer-based, lab, and/or field approaches.  Feel free to contact me by email to introduce yourself if you’d like to learn more!

April 2023: We are recruiting a postdoc in spatial planning for sustainable agriculture.


Ph.D., Program in Ecology, Evolution, and Conservation Biology, Univ. of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, 2010
B.S., Biology, Environmental Studies, Tufts Univ., 2003


NTRS 321 Biometrics (introductory biostatistics)
NTRS 456/644 Wetlands Biology
AGRI 501 Advanced Statistical Techniques for Data Analysis
NTRS 551 Experimental Design

Current research

Response of wetland plant communities to human impacts:
The composition of wetlands can change a lot from place to place and over time, especially in small wetlands and ponds that dry during part of the year.  However, natural long-term changes in plants and their responses to new stresses such as climate change are not well documented.  In wetlands in southwest Michigan and in coastal plain ponds and sinkhole ponds in the mid-Atlantic region, we are studying the influences of water level changes and agriculture on plant communities.

Feedbacks between ecosystems and human communities:
Healthy wetlands and coastal ecosystems benefit humans by providing recreational opportunities, flood mitigation, and many other ecosystem services.  With detailed spatial data, we can begin to link where human activities occur, how they affect the biological communities in those places, and how those impacts affect the benefits that humans enjoy from ecosystems.  We are exploring this interplay between nature and people in the Laurentian Great Lakes and in mid-Atlantic wetlands and coastal waters.

Publications (selected)

(See a more complete list in Google Scholar.)

Smith, S.D.P., D.B. Bunnell, G.A. Burton Jr., J.J.H. Ciborowski, A.D. Davidson, C.E. Dickinson, L.A. Eaton, P.C. Esselman, M.A. Evans, D.R. Kashian, N.F. Manning, P.B. McIntyre, T.F. Nalepa, A. Pérez-Fuentetaja, A.D. Steinman, D.G. Uzarski, and J.D. Allan.  2019.  Evidence for interactions among environmental stressors in the Laurentian Great Lakes.  Ecological Indicators 101:  203-211.

Allan, J.D.*, S.D.P. Smith*, P.B. McIntyre, C.A. Joseph, C.E. Dickinson, A.L. Marino, R.G. Biel, J.C. Olson, P.J. Doran, E.S. Rutherford, J.E. Adkins, and A.O. Adeyemo.  2015.  Using cultural ecosystem services to inform restoration priorities in the Laurentian Great Lakes.  Frontiers in Ecology and the Environment 13:  418-424.  (* = equal contributors)

Smith, S.D.P.  2014.  The roles of nitrogen and phosphorus in regulating the dominance of floating and submerged aquatic plants in a field mesocosm experiment.  Aquatic Botany 112:  1-9.

Allan, J.D.*, P.B. McIntyre*, S.D.P. Smith*, B.S. Halpern, G.L. Boyer, A. Buchsbaum, G.A. Burton Jr., L.M. Campbell, W.L. Chadderton, J.J.H. Ciborowski, P.J. Doran, T. Eder, D.M. Infante, L.B. Johnson, C.A. Joseph, A.L. Marino, A. Prusevich, J.G. Read, J.B. Rose, E.S. Rutherford, S.P. Sowa, and A.D. Steinman.  2013.  Joint analysis of stressors and ecosystem services to enhance restoration effectiveness.  Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 110:  372-377.  (* = equal contributors)

Smith, S.D.P.  2012.  Identifying and evaluating causes of alternative community states in wetland plant communities.  Oikos 121:  675-686.