Mark Bradford

Mark Bradford

Professor, Soils and Ecosystem Ecology

My work focuses on the health, biology, ecology and carbon storage potential of forest, grassland and agricultural soils. I am interested in developing knowledge that allows us to predict how environmental change and management will affect the rates of carbon stabilization and decomposition processes, and hence how the size of soil organic carbon stores change in space and time. Such quantitative knowledge is necessary to connect impacts on soils to consequences for society and the environment, and to inform efforts that seek to better manage soils to restore the benefits they provide. The overall goal of my research is to provide the understanding and data necessary for reliable prediction of global change and management impacts on ecosystems, their feedbacks to the carbon cycle-climate system, and to inform the sustainable management of a productive agriculture.

Research Topics
  • Applied Ecology in Managed Forests

  • Carbon Cycle-Climate Feedbacks

  • Soil Carbon in Agricultural Systems

  • Soil Carbon, Litter Decomposition and Scaling Theory


Please see our lab webpage for a full description of current projects and what topics the various group members focus on.

As a teacher, my primary goal is to develop knowledge, questioning and application of biological and ecological understanding. My advising approach is geared toward the student’s objectives, and emphasizes the value of primary research for advancing understanding and effective application of scientific evidence. Formal classes at Yale include ‘Soil Science’ (taught every spring from 2020) and 'Landscapes & Ecosystems' (taught every fall).



B.S., University of Exeter, UK; Ph.D., University of Exeter and Institute of Terrestrial Ecology, UK.

This professor is accepting doctoral students


Mark Bradford in the News