Researchers from Oklahoma State University are among a statewide group that has been awarded $20 million over five years from the National Science Foundation Experimental Program to Stimulate Competitive Research. 

The work will advance understanding of how socio-ecological systems can adapt sustainably to climate change and will facilitate research and learning opportunities for college faculty, college students and K-12 students throughout the state.  The Oklahoma State Regents for Higher Education also is providing an annual $800,000 match.

The knowledge gained during the project will be used to empower managers to effectively adapt socio-ecological systems to climate variability and to educate Oklahomans about the expected consequences of regional environmental change.  Three interlinked research focus areas will examine complex human, climate and natural resource systems.  An observatory network, a forecasting system and a decision support system will each address social and ecological systems.  The project is innovative in addressing each of these subject areas in tandem as well as their interactions.

The OSU researchers participating in the project are:

·       Tracy Boyer, associate professor, agricultural economics

·       Dana Brunson, director, OSU High Performance Computing Center

·       Jody Campiche, assistant professor, agricultural economics

·       Beth Caniglia, associate professor, sociology

·       Riley Dunlap, Regents professor, sociology

·       David Engle, Regents professor, natural resource ecology & management

·       Sam Fuhlendorf, professor, natural resource ecology & management

·       Tyson Ochsner, assistant professor, plant and soil sciences

·       Mark Payton, professor, statistics

·       David Shideler, assistant professor, agricultural economics

·       Duncan Wilson, assistant professor, natural resource ecology & management

·       Chris Zou, assistant professor, natural resource ecology & management

The award will be managed by James Wicksted, associate director of Oklahoma EPSCoR and a professor in the OSU physics department.


The NSF award is a multi-institutional collaborative project that also includes researchers from the Samuel Roberts Noble Foundation, the University of Oklahoma and The University of Tulsa.  For more information, visit

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