John R. Poulsen

John R. Poulsen

Assistant Professor of Tropical Ecology

ESC Program Co-chair

John Poulsen is an ecologist with broad interests in the maintenance and regeneration of tropical forests and conservation of biodiversity. His research has focused on the effects of anthropogenic disturbance, such as logging and hunting, on forest structure and diversity, abundance of tropical animals, and ecological processes. He has conducted most of his research in Central Africa, where he has also worked as a conservation manager, directing projects to sustainably manage natural resources in and around parks and reserves, and as the coordinator of government programs to develop low emissions strategies and quantify and monitor forest carbon.

In The News


Labriere, N, Tao, S, Chave, J, Scipal, K, Toan, TL, Abernethy, K, Alonso, A, Barbier, N, Bissiengou, P, Casal, T, Davies, SJ, Ferraz, A, Herault, B, Jaouen, G, Jeffery, KJ, Kenfack, D, Korte, L, Lewis, SL, Malhi, Y, Memiaghe, HR, Poulsen, JR, Rejou-Mechain, M, Villard, L, Vincent, G, White, LJT, and Saatchi, S. "In Situ Reference Datasets From the TropiSAR and AfriSAR Campaigns in Support of Upcoming Spaceborne Biomass Missions(Accepted)." Ieee Journal of Selected Topics in Applied Earth Observations and Remote Sensing (July 20, 2018).

Poulsen, JR, Rosin, C, Meier, A, Mills, E, Nuñez, CL, Koerner, SE, Blanchard, E, Callejas, J, Moore, S, and Sowers, M. "Ecological consequences of forest elephant declines for Afrotropical forests." Conservation Biology : the Journal of the Society for Conservation Biology 32, no. 3 (June 2018): 559-567.

Ingram, DJ, Coad, L, Abernethy, KA, Maisels, F, Stokes, EJ, Bobo, KS, Breuer, T, Gandiwa, E, Ghiurghi, A, Greengrass, E, Holmern, T, Kamgaing, TOW, Ndong Obiang, A-M, Poulsen, JR, Schleicher, J, Nielsen, MR, Solly, H, Vath, CL, Waltert, M, Whitham, CEL, Wilkie, DS, and Scharlemann, JPW. "Assessing Africa-Wide Pangolin Exploitation by Scaling Local Data." Conservation Letters 11, no. 2 (March 2018): e12389-e12389.

Slik, JWF, Franklin, J, Arroyo-Rodríguez, V, Field, R, Aguilar, S, Aguirre, N, Ahumada, J, Aiba, S-I, Alves, LF, K, A, Avella, A, Mora, F, Aymard C, GA, Báez, S, Balvanera, P, Bastian, ML, Bastin, J-F, Bellingham, PJ, van den Berg, E, da Conceição Bispo, P, Boeckx, P, Boehning-Gaese, K, Bongers, F, Boyle, B, Brambach, F, Brearley, FQ, Brown, S, Chai, S-L, Chazdon, RL, Chen, S, Chhang, P, Chuyong, G, Ewango, C, Coronado, IM, Cristóbal-Azkarate, J, Culmsee, H, Damas, K, Dattaraja, HS, Davidar, P, DeWalt, SJ, Din, H, Drake, DR, Duque, A, Durigan, G, Eichhorn, K, Eler, ES, Enoki, T, Ensslin, A, Fandohan, AB, Farwig, N, Feeley, KJ, Fischer, M, Forshed, O, Garcia, QS, Garkoti, SC, Gillespie, TW, Gillet, J-F, Gonmadje, C, Granzow-de la Cerda, I, Griffith, DM, Grogan, J, Hakeem, KR, Harris, DJ, Harrison, RD, Hector, A, Hemp, A, Homeier, J, Hussain, MS, Ibarra-Manríquez, G, Hanum, IF, Imai, N, Jansen, PA, Joly, CA, Joseph, S, Kartawinata, K, Kearsley, E, Kelly, DL, Kessler, M, Killeen, TJ, Kooyman, RM, Laumonier, Y, Laurance, SG, Laurance, WF, Lawes, MJ, Letcher, SG, Lindsell, J, Lovett, J, Lozada, J, Lu, X, Lykke, AM, Mahmud, KB, Mahayani, NPD, Mansor, A, Marshall, AR, Martin, EH, Calderado Leal Matos, D, Meave, JA, Melo, FPL, Mendoza, ZHA, Metali, F, Medjibe, VP, Metzger, JP, Metzker, T, Mohandass, D, Munguía-Rosas, MA, Muñoz, R, Nurtjahy, E, de Oliveira, EL, Onrizal, , Parolin, P, Parren, M, Parthasarathy, N, Paudel, E, Perez, R, Pérez-García, EA, Pommer, U, Poorter, L, Qie, L, Piedade, MTF, Pinto, JRR, Poulsen, AD, Poulsen, JR, Powers, JS, Prasad, RC, Puyravaud, J-P, Rangel, O, Reitsma, J, Rocha, DSB, Rolim, S, Rovero, F, Rozak, A, Ruokolainen, K, Rutishauser, E, Rutten, G, Mohd Said, MN, Saiter, FZ, Saner, P, Santos, B, Dos Santos, JR, Sarker, SK, Schmitt, CB, Schoengart, J, Schulze, M, Sheil, D, Sist, P, Souza, AF, Spironello, WR, Sposito, T, Steinmetz, R, Stevart, T, Suganuma, MS, Sukri, R, Sultana, A, Sukumar, R, Sunderland, T, Supriyadi, , Suresh, HS, Suzuki, E, Tabarelli, M, Tang, J, Tanner, EVJ, Targhetta, N, Theilade, I, Thomas, D, Timberlake, J, de Morisson Valeriano, M, van Valkenburg, J, Van Do, T, Van Sam, H, Vandermeer, JH, Verbeeck, H, Vetaas, OR, Adekunle, V, Vieira, SA, Webb, CO, Webb, EL, Whitfeld, T, Wich, S, Williams, J, Wiser, S, Wittmann, F, Yang, X, Adou Yao, CY, Yap, SL, Zahawi, RA, Zakaria, R, and Zang, R. "Phylogenetic classification of the world's tropical forests." Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America 115, no. 8 (February 5, 2018): 1837-1842.

Mills, EC, Poulsen, JR, Fay, JM, Morkel, P, Clark, CJ, Meier, A, Beirne, C, and White, LJT. "Forest elephant movement and habitat use in a tropical forest-grassland mosaic in Gabon." Plos One 13, no. 7 (January 2018): e0199387-null.

Recent Grants


ENERGY 795: Connections in Energy: Interdisciplinary Team Projects (ENERGY 795: Connections in Energy: Interdisciplinary Team Projects)
ENVIRON 593: Independent Studies and Projects (ENVIRON 593: Independent Studies and Projects)
BIOLOGY 561: Tropical Ecology (BIOLOGY 561: Tropical Ecology)
ENVIRON 590: Special Topics (ENVIRON 590: Special Topics)
ENVIRON 517: Tropical Ecology (ENVIRON 517: Tropical Ecology)

Video: Poaching drives decline in forest elephants in Africa

Contact Information

PO Box 90328, Lscr A317
Durham, NC 27708


Ph.D., University of Florida (2009)