Ottar Bjornstad Lab

About Ottar

I work in the Departments of Entomology and Biology and at the Center for Infectious Disease Dynamics of the Pennsylvania State University. My main interests are population ecology/dynamics and ecological epidemiology with particular emphasis on mathematical and computational aspects. I am also an adjunct faculty in the Department of Statistics and carry out research in statistical ecology and in methods for analyzing spatiotemporal data.

Much of my work is of a collaborative nature working with students, postdocs, and faculty locally and across universities worldwide. I currently (or recently) work on the ecology of infectious disease; theoretical and empirical aspects of spatial synchrony in population dynamics; Stage-structured dynamics of insects; and more.

If you wish to be part of any of these studies as a student, postdoc, or collaborator: Browse on, check out details on the research and contact me.

My work has several interrelated themes:

  1. Population dynamics – how do the interactions between individuals and between individuals and the environment determine fluctuations in abundance?
  2. Interactions between species – how do competition, predation, and parasitism affect dynamics?
  3. Spatial dynamics – what causes regional synchrony or asynchrony in fluctuations? What causes regional transitions in population dynamics
  4. Ecology of infectious disease – how do host and pathogen characteristics affect incidence of disease? Partly as an integral part of (1-4) and partly as a separate research area, I am also interested in the foundations of confronting theory with data. My fifth theme is-
  5. Ecological statistics – how can we test the theories about spatiotemporal variation using abundance data?

1-page summary for prospective students and general interest

Curriculum vitae