Kelly Kapsar, Ph.D.

Kelly Kapsar

Contact Me


Postdoctoral Research Associate - Center for Systems Integration and Sustainability



Kelly is an interdisciplinary environmental scientist focused on solutions-driven approaches to conservation challenges in coupled human and natural systems. Through her research, she uses spatial data analysis and statistics to better understand human-wildlife interactions across scales of space and time. Her research interests also include community-engagement, knowledge integration, and reproducible research.

As a postdoctoral research associate, Kelly is working to better understand the effects of distant drivers on the coupled human and natural systems of the Pacific Arctic. Specifically, she is developing models of vessel traffic and its impacts on wildlife in the Bering Strait region of Alaska. 

She received her PhD in fisheries and wildlife in Spring 2022, advised by Jianguo "Jack" Liu. In 2014, she graduated with a B.A. in biology from Carleton College and after two years working as a science educator, she is eager to continue her education at Michigan State University.

Through interdisciplinary graduate research under Dr. Jianguo Liu at the Center for Systems Integration and Sustainability, she hopes to better understand the dynamic relationships between culture, ecosystems, science, and conservation policy in the Arctic.

Zoos should leave the ark metaphor behind - Nature Portfolio Ecology & Evolution Community, September 2018