Biology & Marine Biology

Faculty & Staff

Stuart R. Borrett, Associate Professor

Borrett Ph.D., University of Georgia, Athens, GA, 2005
B.A., Austin College, Sherman, TX, 1997
Friday Hall 2011 | (910) 962-2411 | 601 South College Road, Wilmington, NC, 28403-5915 |

I am a systems ecologist using quantitative methods to investigate ecosystem organization and transformation. The overarching goals of my research program are (1) to understand the fundamental processes that create, constrain, and sustain ecological systems and (2) to develop a formal science of environment that we can use to comprehend the causes and consequences of both local and global environmental changes.

There are two main branches to my work: indirect effects and inductive process modeling. Indirect effects allow one species to affect the distribution, abundance, and behavior or other species with out direct contact. They create a hidden environment of interactions that integrate communities into functional systems. My primary approach has been the analysis of network models of energy-matter flux in ecosystems.

I am also helping to develop and applying a new computational approach to facilitate model construction called Inductive Process Modeling. Currently, I am using this approach to build and evaluate ecosystem models of the Ross Sea, Antarctica, to explain the observed spatial variability in the phytoplankton community.

Salas, A.K. and S.R. Borrett. 2011.Evidence for dominance of indirect effects in 50 trophic ecosystem network. Ecological Modelling 222: 1192--1204. doi:10.1016/j.ecolmodel.2010.12.002

Borrett, S.R., S.J. Whipple, B.C. Patten. 2010.Rapid development of indirect effects in ecosystem networks. Oikos 119: 1136-1148doi:10.1111/j.1600-0706.2009.18104.X

Borrett, S.R., W. Bridewell, P. Langley, K.R. Arrigo. 2007. A method for representing and developing process models. Ecological Complexity 4: 1-12. doi:10.1016/j.ecocom.2007.02.017

Bridewell, W., Borrett, S.R., & Todorovski, L. 2007. Extracting constraints for process modeling. Proceedings of the Fourth International Conference on Knowledge Capture (pp. 87-94). Whistler, BC.

Whipple, S.J., B.C. Patten, P.G. Verity, M.E. Frischer, J.D. Long, J.C. Nejstgaard, J.T. Anderson, A. Jacobsen, A. Larsen, J. Martinez-Martinez, and S.R. Borrett. 2007 Gaining integrated understanding of Phaeocystis spp. through model-driven laboratory and mesocosm studies. Biogeochemistry 83:293-309. doi:10.1007/s10533-007-9089-z

Borrett, S.R., B.D. Fath, B.C. Patten. 2007. Functional integration of ecological networks through pathway proliferation. Journal of Theoretical Biology 245: 98-111. doi:10.1016/j.jtbi.2006.09.024

Borrett, S.R. and O.O. Osidele. 2007. Environ indicator sensitivity to flux uncertainty in a phosphorus model of Lake Sidney Lanier, USA. Ecological Modelling 200: 371-383. doi:10.1016/j.ecolmodel.2006.08.011

Nejstgaard, J.C., M.E. Frischer, P.G. Verity, J.T. Anderson, A. Jacobsen, M.J. Zirbel, A. Larson, J. Martínez-Martínez, A.F. Sazhin, T. Walters, D.A. Bronk, S.J. Whipple, S.R. Borrett, B.C. Patten, and J.D. Long. 2006. Plankton development and trophic transfer in sea water enclosures with added nutrients and Phaeocystis pouchetii. Marine Ecology Progress Series 321: 99-121.

Borrett, S.R., S.J. Whipple, B.C. Patten, R.R. Christian. 2006. Indirect effects and distributed control in ecosystems: Temporal variation of indirect effects in a seven-compartment model of nitrogen flow in the Neuse River Estuary, USA-Time series analysis. Ecological Modelling 194: 178-188. doi:10.1016/j.ecolmodel.2005.10.011

Fath, B.D. and S.R. Borrett. 2006. A MATLAB® function for network environ analysis. Environmental Modelling & Software 21: 375-405. doi:10.1016/j.envsoft.2004.11.007

Cowie, G.M. and S.R. Borrett. 2005. Institutional perspectives on participation and information in water management. Environmental Modeling & Software 20: 469-483. doi:10.1016/j.envsoft.2004.02.006