Research Staff

Wayne Walker, Ph.D.

Assistant Scientist
Woods Hole Research Center
149 Woods Hole Road
Falmouth, MA 02540-1644
Phone:
508-444-1541
Fax:
508-444-1841
Email:

Dr. Walker is an ecologist and remote sensing specialist interested in applications of satellite imagery to the assessment and monitoring of temperate and tropical ecosystems at regional to global scales. His research focuses on measuring and mapping forest structural attributes, land cover/land use change and terrestrial carbon stocks in support of habitat management, ecosystem conservation and carbon-cycle science. He is committed to building institutional capacity in the tools and techniques used to measure and monitor forests, working in collaboration with governments, NGOs and indigenous communities across the tropics. Walker holds degrees in forest ecology (M.S.) and remote sensing (Ph.D.) from the University of Michigan.

Education

Ph.D. - University of Michigan
2006, Remote Sensing
Dissertation: Toward regional- to continental-scale estimates of vegetation height: An empirical approach based on data from the Shuttle Radar Topography Mission.

M.S. - University of Michigan
1999, Forest Ecology
Thesis: Landscape ecosystems of the Mack Lake burn, northern Lower Michigan, and the occurrence of the Kirtland’s warbler.

B.S. - University of Michigan
1994, Resource Ecology and Management

Professional Experience

  • 2009 - present: Assistant Scientist, Woods Hole Research Center
  • 2008 - 2009: Research Associate, Woods Hole Research Center
  • 2006 - 2008: Post-Doctoral Fellow, Woods Hole Research Center
  • 2005 - 2006: Visiting Research Associate, Woods Hole Research Center
  • 2002 - 2005: NASA Earth System Science Fellow, University of Michigan
    Project title: Forest structure from multispectral fusion
  • 2000 - 2002: Graduate Student Research Assistant, University of Michigan
    Project title: Forest structure from multispectral fusion
  • 1999: Computer Specialist, USDA Forest Service, North Central Research Station
  • 1995 - 1998: Graduate Student Research Assistant, University of Michigan
    Project title: Landscape ecosystems of the Mack Lake burn, northern Lower Michigan, and the occurrence of the Kirtland’s warbler
  • 1994: Research Assistant, University of Michigan
    Project title: The diversity of landscape ecosystems in the river valleys of the Huron-Manistee National Forests, northern Lower Michigan
  • 1993: Forest Pest Specialist, Michigan Department of Natural Resources, Forest Management Division

Research Interests

Applications of remote sensing technologies to the measurement and monitoring of temperate and tropical ecosystems at regional to continental scales; mapping forest structural attributes, land cover/land use change, and above-ground biomass/carbon stocks using multi-sensor, multi-temporal, and object-oriented image-analysis approaches; improving the spatial-statistical integration of field and remotely sensed data sources; building technical capacity in the tools and techniques used to monitor tropical forests at levels ranging from government ministries to indigenous communities.

Selected publications

Kellndorfer, J.M., W.S. Walker, K. Kirsch, G. Fiske, J. Bishop, E. LaPoint, M. Hoppus, and J. Westfall. 2011 - In Preparation. Development of a U.S. National Biomass and Carbon Dataset for the year 2000 through exploitation of InSAR and optical remote sensing. Remote Sensing of Environment.

Houghton, R.H., N. Greenglass, A. Baccini, A. Cattaneo, S. Goetz, J. Kellndorfer, N. Laporte, and W. Walker. 2010. The role of science in Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Forest Degradation (REDD). Carbon Balance and Management 1:253-259.

Walker, W.S., C.M. Stickler, J.M. Kellndorfer, K.M. Kirsch, and D.C. Nepstad. 2010. Large-area classification and mapping of forest and land cover in the Brazilian Amazon: a comparative analysis of ALOS/PALSAR and Landsat TM data sources. Journal of Selected Topics in Applied Earth Observations and Remote Sensing 3:594-604.

Kellndorfer, J.M., W.S. Walker, E. LaPoint, K. Kirsch, J. Bishop, and G. Fiske. 2010. Statistical Fusion of Lidar, InSAR, and Optical Remote Sensing Data for Forest Stand Height Characterization: A Regional-Scale Method based on LVIS, SRTM, Landsat ETM+, and Ancillary Data Sets. Journal of Geophysical Research 115:1-10.

Stickler, C.M., D.C. Nepstad, M.T. Coe, H.O. Rodríguez, D.G. McGrath, W.S. Walker, B.S. Soares-Filho, and E.A. Davidson. 2009. The potential ecological costs and cobenefits of REDD: a critical review and case study from the Amazon region. Global Change Biology 15:2803-2824.

Goetz, S.J., A. Baccini, N.T. Laporte, T. Johns, W. Walker, J. Kellndorfer, R.A. Houghton and M. Sun. 2009. Mapping and monitoring carbon stocks with satellite observations: a comparison of methods. Carbon Balance and Management 4:1-7.

Laporte N., W. Walker, J. Stabach, and F. Landsberg. 2008. Monitoring forest-savannah dynamics in Kibale National Park with satellite imagery (1989-2003): Implications for the management of wildlife habitat. In: R. Wrangham and E. Ross eds., Science and Conservation in African Forests – The Benefits of Long-term Research, Cambridge University Press. 254 pp.

Walker, W.S., J.M Kellndorfer, E. LaPoint, M. Hoppus, and J. Westfall. 2007. An empirical InSAR-optical fusion approach to mapping vegetation canopy height. Remote Sensing of Environment 109:482-499.

Walker, W.S., J.M. Kellndorfer, and L.E. Pierce. 2007. Quality assessment of SRTM C- and X-band interferometric data: Implications for the estimation of vegetation canopy height. Remote Sensing of Environment 106:428-448.

Hyde, P., R. Dubayah, W. Walker, J.B. Blair, M. Hofton, and C. Hunsaker. 2006. Mapping forest structure for wildlife habitat analysis using multi-sensor (LiDAR, SAR/InSAR, ETM+, Quickbird) synergy. Remote Sensing of Environment 102:63-73.

Pierce, L., J. Kellndorfer, W. Walker, and O. Barros. 2006. Evaluation of the horizontal resolution of SRTM elevation data. Photogrammetric Engineering and Remote Sensing. 72:1235-1244.

Hyde, P., R. Dubayah, B. Peterson, J.B. Blair, M. Hofton, C. Hunsaker, R. Knox, W. Walker. 2005. Mapping forest structure for wildlife habitat analysis using waveform lidar: Validation of montane ecosystems. Remote Sensing of Environment 96:427-437.

Kellndorfer, J., W. Walker, L. Pierce, C. Dobson, J.A. Fites, C. Hunsaker, J. Vona, and M. Clutter. 2004. Vegetation height estimation from Shuttle Radar Topography Mission and National Elevation Datasets. Remote Sensing of Environment 93:339-358

Nashashibi, A.Y., K. Sarabandi, S. Oveisgharan, M.C. Dobson, W. Walker, and E. Burke. 2004. Millimeter-wave measurements of foliage attenuation and ground reflectivity of tree stands at nadir incidence. IEEE Transactions on Antennas and Propagation 52:1211-1222.

Kashian, D.M., B.V. Barnes, and W.S. Walker. 2003. Ecological species groups of landform-level ecosystems dominated by jack pine in northern Lower Michigan, U.S.A. Plant Ecology 166:79-91.

Walker, W.S., B.V. Barnes, and D.M. Kashian. 2003. Landscape ecosystems of the Mack Lake burn, northern Lower Michigan, and the occurrence of the Kirtland’s warbler. Forest Science 49:119-139.

Kashian, D.M., B.V. Barnes, and W.S. Walker. 2003. Landscape ecosystems of northern Lower Michigan and the occurrence and management of the Kirtland’s warbler. Forest Science 49:140-159.

Achievements and Awards

  • National Aeronautics and Space Administration Earth System Science Fellowship (2002-2005)
  • Samuel A. Graham Award for "outstanding scholarship and superior capability in writing," University of Michigan (2000 and 2003)
  • Jeffery Lund Forest Ecology Award for "demonstrating academic excellence, research capability, and professional promise," University of Michigan (2003)
  • Resource Ecology and Management Superior Teaching Award, University of Michigan (1998)
  • Member of the IEEE International Geoscience and Remote Sensing Society
  • Member of the American Society for Photogrammetry and Remote Sensing
  • Member of the American Geophysical Union