Christopher Crawford

STEP Ph.D. student
307 Robertson Hall

I am a graduate student working with the Wilcove lab on issues that combine conservation ecology, economics, and policy. With a background in ecology, I like to serve as a bridge between the ecology and evolutionary biology department and the policy school here at Princeton, in an effort to integrate more ecological science into real-world policy. 

Some of my research interests include ecological restoration (particularly along rivers and streams), incentives for conservation and restoration on private lands, the effects of agricultural land use on biodiversity, and causes and consequences of land use change. I like to ask big questions like: how do we find more room for wildlife habitat and biodiversity in human-dominated landscapes, and how do we feed the world without losing the wildlife and habitats we cherish and depend on? 

My research involves exploring the biodiversity, ecosystem service, and economic trade-offs of different land use scenarios, and investigating the human elements that inform the design of policies and incentive programs to effectively guide land use through transition periods. Using ecological and social sciences, I hope to make the most of opportunities to create more wildlife habitat within agricultural landscapes - small steps towards meeting the intertwined needs of biodiversity and people.

Prior to graduate school, I spent 3.5 years working for Sustainable Conservation, an environmental non-profit in San Francisco. During my time at Sustainable Conservation, I worked on collaborative projects to 1) reduce the use of invasive plants in horticulture (PlantRight) and 2) facilitate riparian restoration in California’s Central Valley. A Michigan native, I graduated from the University of Michigan in 2012, and I love riding my bicycle, taking pictures of clouds, and listening to Swedish music.