Stephen D. Murphy
Editor-in-Chief, Restoration Ecology
Professor and Chair of the Department
Department of Environment and Resource Studies (ERS)
University of Waterloo, Ontario, Canada
Stephen D. Murphy B.Sc., Ph.D. is a Professor and Chair of the Department of Environment and Resource Studies, University of Waterloo, Waterloo ON Canada. He is also Director of the University's Centre for Ecosystem Resilience & Adaptation and Research Chair and Chair of the Provincial Centre for Applied Science in Ontario Protected Areas. At the University, he currently runs a research group focused on restoration and conservation consisting of 2 post-docs, 7 PhD students, 12 Master's students, 17 Bachelor's students, and 3 co-op students.
Steve is Past-Chair, Society for Ecological Restoration (SER) Ontario, a Member of the Restoration Institute, and advisor to a dozen boards focused on ecological sciences. He was Program Chair for the SER 2001 and 2013 Conferences and part of the Steering Committee for the joint Conference on Ecological and Ecosystem Restoration (CEER) in 2014.
As a Professor at the University of Waterloo, he has mentored over 250 graduate students and over 5,000 undergraduate students in classes in the technical, business, ethics, and policy aspects of restoration ecology, ecological restoration, conservation, ecological indicators, and management for private and public lands. Over 500 of his alumni are employed in restoration-related fields.
Steve’s work currently focuses on the theoretical basis for and measurement of ecological restoration and resilience in socio-ecological systems. To this end, there is an overarching theme of Big History/Big Future (long timeframes) matched with smaller-scale studies on how one actually studies and measures resilience locally. The vexing question of what makes a study transdisciplinary and rigorous is pursued in Steve’s research group on both a philosophical and applied basis.
He has over 600 peer reviewed journal articles, books, book chapters, conference papers, and technical reports. Most recently, he has been a contributor to six chapters in Hobbs, Higgs, and Hall’s 2013 book on Novel Ecosystems and a series of papers in 2012-2013 pertaining to restoration and resilience in parks and protected areas and agroecosystems with former PhD students Scott Parker (senior scientist with Parks Canada) and Darby McGrath (senior scientist with the Vineland Research and Innovation Centre in Ontario).
He is an expert in natural sciences-policy interactions and applications and has experience in the academic and practitioner realms of restoration ecology, parks management, and environmental politics, policy & governance. He has raised over $30 million to achieve institutional and research goals at the University and with professional or charitable societies.
His academic work and roles in professional societies has been expanding influence on public policy pertaining to restoration to increase a range of initiatives: interaction between academics and practitioners, linkages with like-minded professional societies, inclusiveness especially with respect to gender balance, cultural diversity, and engaging younger members.