Michael Stanley Gallisdorfer


105 Wilkeson Quad

Geography (Physical Geography-Earth Systems Science)
msg5 at buffalo edu

Research interests

  • Ecological Restoration of Streams (primary research focus)
  • Watershed Management and Engineering (primary research focus)
  • Sustainability Science
  • Systems Ecology, Emergence, and Complexity
  • Aesthetic and Critical Theory
  • Geography - Physical Geography; multifunctional integrative stream corridor restoration, stream system processes, and flow - redirection techniques employing engineered large wood structures

Personal statement

My inquiry is motivated by the need to address complex, large-scale ecological problems spanning traditional academic disciplines and intellectual boundaries. Resolving the problem of anthropogenic ecosystem degradation requires investigators to ascertain its fundamental drivers in addition to elucidating its proximal causes and addressing its incidental manifestations.

The ecological degradation of stream ecosystems presents a subset of the general problem posed to ecological restorationists. Focusing on the impact of agriculture on streams, specifically the impact of anthropogenic nutrients on riparian and stream ecosystems, I hope to develop an understanding of ways in which to mitigate its impact on these systems. Excessive sediment and nutrient inputs to streams result directly from current agricultural practices, and present clear threats to downstream human communities and ecosystems, including the contamination of drinking water, the development of hypoxic and anoxic zones and the resultant impact on fisheries, etc.

As a native of Buffalo, NY, I have witnessed its industrial decline and personally experienced the legacy of ecological destruction left in the wake of its past prosperity. Unlike the short-term economic benefits afforded by intensive resource exploitation and industrial processes, the ecological costs of such activities are born over the long-term by future generations expecting to receive no benefits, economic or otherwise, from them. In future inquiries I hope to develop critical solutions challenging the environmentally-destructive paradigm basic to the above-mentioned economic-industrial process that externalizes its ecological costs.


  • University at Buffalo (SUNY) B.A. 2003 (summa cum laude, philosophy)
  • University at Buffalo (SUNY) B.A. 2008 (summa cum laude, environmental studies)

Prior Research

W.M. Keck Environmental Field Lab, The College of William & Mary, Williamsburg, Virginia, Dr. Randolph Chambers, advisor NSF-REU student researcher, "The Ecological Stoichiometry of Amphipoda spp."

Biogeochemistry Lab, University at Buffalo (SUNY), Buffalo, New York, Dr. Tracy Bank, principal investigator research assistant, "Investigation of Biomediated Reduction of Cr(VI) Under Anaerobic Conditions"