Maria Uriarte

Professor of Ecology, Evolution and Environmental Biology ,



María Uriarte is a Professor in the Department of Ecology, Evolution & Environmental Biology at Columbia University. She also is a member of the Earth Institute at Columbia and serves as an affiliate faculty in the Dept. of Statistics at Columbia and adjunct faculty in the Dept. of Ecology, University of São Paulo, Brazil. Uriarte studies the processes that drive forest dynamics in tropical regions, with a focus on forest recovery after extreme weather events (e.g., hurricanes) and from human land use, and the consequences of these dynamics for ecosystem services. She explores these questions using a range of approaches and tools. Her current projects are based in Puerto Rico and Brazil and she has also worked in Chile, Peru, and Costa Rica.

Her work has been recognized with a Leopold Leadership Fellowship from the Woods Institute for the Environment, Stanford University, and a Science without Borders Fellowship from the Brazilian government. Uriarte received an M.S. in Environmental Studies from Yale University and her Ph.D. in Ecology from Cornell University. Before arriving at Columbia in 20005, she was a National Science Foundation postdoctoral research fellow at the Cary Institute of Ecosystem Studies in Millbrook, NY. Uriarte and her students have published more than 180 papers and her work has been featured in multiple media outlets including the New York Times, CNN, PBS, and others.


Only select publications listed below
Name Published Date
Declining diversity of wild-caught species puts dietary nutrient supplies at risk 2021
Seven centuries of reconstructed Brahmaputra River discharge demonstrate underestimated high discharge and flood hazard frequency 2020
Six Centuries of Upper Indus Basin Streamflow Variability and Its Climatic Drivers 2018
Climate change and sugarcane expansion increase Hantavirus infection risk 2017
Data from: Fragmentation increases wind disturbance impacts on forest structure and carbon stocks in a Western Amazonian landscape 2017
Land-use dynamics influence estimates of carbon sequestration potential in tropical second-growth forest 2017
Abrupt Change in Forest Height along a Tropical Elevation Gradient Detected Using Airborne Lidar 2016
Landscape, Environmental and Social Predictors of Hantavirus Risk in São Paulo, Brazil 2016
The interaction of land‐use legacies and hurricane disturbance in subtropical wet forest: twenty‐one years of change 2016
A Well-Resolved Phylogeny of the Trees of Puerto Rico Based on DNA Barcode Sequence Data 2014
Land cover change interacts with drought severity to change fire regimes in Western Amazonia 2014
Perceptional and Socio-Demographic Factors Associated with Household Drinking Water Management Strategies in Rural Puerto Rico 2014
Human-Induced Trophic Cascades along the Fecal Detritus Pathway 2013
Moving forward in global-change ecology: capitalizing on natural variability 2013
Species-time-area and phylogenetic-time-area relationships in tropical tree communities 2013
Trait-dependent response of dung beetle populations to tropical forest conversion at local and regional scales 2013
Coupling of fog and marine microbial content in the near-shore coastal environment 2012
Multidimensional trade-offs in species responses to disturbance: implications for diversity in a subtropical forest 2012
Phylogenetic and functional alpha and beta diversity in temperate and tropical tree communities 2012
Temporal turnover in the composition of tropical tree communities: functional determinism and phylogenetic stochasticity 2012
Asymmetric Dispersal and Colonization Success of Amazonian Plant-Ants Queens 2011
Biophysical and Socioeconomic Factors Associated with Forest Transitions at Multiple Spatial and Temporal Scales 2011
Disentangling the drivers of reduced long-distance seed dispersal by birds in an experimentally fragmented landscape 2011
High-yield oil palm expansion spares land at the expense of forests in the Peruvian Amazon 2011
North Tropical Atlantic influence on western Amazon fire season variability 2011
Advances in the Use of DNA Barcodes to Build a Community Phylogeny for Tropical Trees in a Puerto Rican Forest Dynamics Plot 2010
Effects of forest fragmentation on the seedling recruitment of a tropical herb: assessing seed vs. safe-site limitation 2010
Interactive effects of land use history and natural disturbance on seedling dynamics in a subtropical forest 2010
Natural disturbance and human land use as determinants of tropical forest dynamics: results from a forest simulator 2009
Preaching to the Unconverted 2009
Analysis Of Neighborhood Dynamics Of Forest Ecosystems Using Likelihood Methods And Modeling 2006
Neighborhood Analyses Of Canopy Tree Competition Along Environmental Gradients In New England Forests 2006
A Neighborhood Analysis of Tree Growth and Survival in a Hurricane-Driven Tropical Forest 2004
A Model of Simultaneous Evolution of Competitive Ability and Herbivore Resistance in a Perennial Plant 2002
Jurisdiction Over Endangered Species' Habitat: the Impacts of People and Property on Recovery Planning 2002