Dr. Meaghan T. Murphy


Home 613 834 6181  Cell 613 301 9762


121 Claiborne Way

Ottawa, ON K1E 3V9






Ecosystem science- carbon budgets and sequestration, plant processes and responses to environmental factors, plant diversity, nutrient cycling, gas exchange, soil processes.


Global change- ecosystem responses to global change (global warming and soil warming, nitrogen deposition, eutrophication, hydrology/water table drawdown, biodiversity loss) particularly with regards to carbon and nutrient cycling and plants. 


Biodiversity and ecosystem function- effects of plant biodiversity on ecosystem function (via carbon cycling).  Consequences of biodiversity loss to carbon budgets and sequestration potential of systems


Wetland ecology- factors driving plant distribution and abundance and C sequestration in wetland communities including salt marshes, freshwater marshes, and peatlands (fens and bogs).  Strong background in wetland conservation issues as well, including invasive species, global change impacts, eutrophication etc.


Forest ecology- boreal and northern forest systems as well as tropical forests.  Carbon stocks and budgets, responses to global warming and water table manipulations.   Effects of tree diversity on forest function in the tropics.





Post-doctoral fellow, University of Quebec Montreal                                                                    (Fall 2009-Winter 2010)

Conducting a meta-analysis of boreal forest soil respiration studies for publication


Term lecturer, McGill University, Department of Geography                                                       (Fall 2009-Winter 2010)

Taught two course in the Geography Department at McGill University including a

400-level wetland ecology course and a 200-level course of global climate change.


Manuscript reviewer                                                                                                                           ( 2008-2010)

Reviewed manuscripts for numerous peer-reviewed journals including the Journal

of Arid Environments, Ecoscience, Canadian Journal of Forest Research, and

Plant and soil.





McGill University

Ph.D., October 2009

Department of Geography


McGill University

Master of Science, August 2005

Department of Biology, Neotropical Environment Option

GPA 3.98/ 4.0


Mount Holyoke College

Bachelor of Arts, May 2003

Major: Environmental studies, concentrating in ecosystem science

Major GPA 3.98/4.0      Overall GPA 3.98/4.0







Murphy M, Laiho R, Moore TR.  2009.  Effects of water table drawdown on root production and aboveground biomass in a boreal bog. Ecosystems.  12: 1268-1282.


Murphy M, McKinley A, Moore TR.  2009.  Variations and controls in above- and belowground biomass on a temperate ombrotrophic peatland.  Botany 87(9): 845-853. 


Murphy M, Balser T, Buchmann N, Hahn V, Potvin C.  2008.  Linking tree biodiversity to belowground process in a young tropical plantation: Impacts on soil CO2 flux.  Forest Ecology and Management  255 (7): 2577-2588.


Murphy M, Moore TR.  Submitted.  Linking root production to aboveground plant characteristics and water table in a temperate bog. 


Murphy M, Moore TR.  In prep.  Above- and belowground vascular plant biomass and production in wetland plant communities: a review. 


Murphy M. 2009.  Getting to the root of the matter: variations in vascular root biomass and production in peatlands and responses to global change.  Doctoral dissertation.  McGill University. 


Murphy M.  2005.  Biotic and abiotic controls on soil respiration in a biodiversity plantation in the tropics. Masters of Science Thesis, McGill University. 




"Root biomass and production in wetland communities," Oral presentation at UQAM Root Symposium, University of Quebec Montreal, Montreal, QC April 14-15. 


"Getting to the root of the matter: global trends in wetland belowground biomass stocks," Poster presented at the Fourth International Symposium on Dynamics of Physiological Processes in Roots of Woody Plants, University of Wales, Bangor, September 2007.


"Variations in root biomass in an ombrotrophic bog," Poster presented at the Symposium on Carbon in Peatlands, Wageningen, NL, April 2007.


"Tree species diversity and soil respiration in a Panamanian plantation,"  Oral presentation at Ecological Society of America Annual Meeting, Montreal, QC, August 2005.


"Tree species diversity and soil respiration in a Panamanian plantation," (initial results) Poster presentation at the Ecological Society of America Annual Meeting, Portland, Oregon, August 2004.


"Contribution of plant respiration to ecosystem respiration at Mer Bleue Bog, Ottawa, ON," Poster presentation at the American Geophysical Union Annual Meeting, Montreal QC, July 2004. 






                                McGill University, Department of Geography                                                          Winter 2009

                                Course: GEOG205 Global change: past, present, and future

                                Lecture-based course on global change phenomenon.  I am teaching

the course half that focuses on understanding current climate change

phenomena and the current and future impacts          


McGill University, Department of Geography                                                         Fall 2009

                                Course: GEOG470 Wetlands

                                Course focused on wetland ecology and involved a three day field trip

to collect data as well as weekly labs on data analysis in addition to

weekly lectures on wetland ecology.  As instructor I taught lectures and

 lead both the fieldtrip and labs           


McGill University, Global Environmental and Climate Change Center              June 2007

                             Course:  Hands on the Environment Field School

                             Demonstrated field techniques and taught lab


Guest Lecturer-

                             McGill University, Department of Geography                                                            Winter 2008

                             Course: GEOG 205 – Environmental systems and global change

                             Lecture:  Biogeography- climates and biomes   


                             McGill University, Department of Geography                                                           Fall 2007

                             Course: GEOG 470 - Wetlands

                             Lecture: Studying belowground plant components in Wetlands


Teaching Assistant-

                             McGill University, Department of Geography                                                            Fall 2005 - 2008

                             Course: GEOG 203- Environmental Systems

                             Graded assignments and exams, modified

                             assignments, held office hours


                             McGill University, Department of Geography                                                             Winter 2006 - 2008

                             Course: GEOG 205- Global Change: past, present and future

                             Graded assignments and exams, modified

                             assignments, held office hours


                             McGill University, Department of Biology                                                                  Fall 2003 -2004

                             Course: BIO 465 - Conservation Biology

                             Taught lab sections, graded assignments


                              McGill University, Department of Biology                                                                Winter 2004

                              Course: BIO 112 - Cell and Molecular Biology

                              Prepared and taught laboratory sessions, marked lab reports and



                              Mount Holyoke College, Department of Earth and Environment                            Fall 2002

                              Course: 200- Environmental Science

                              Assisted with labs, held office hours


Mentor-                                                                                                                                                            Winter 2009

                                Served as a mentor at the Office of Students with Disabilities.  

                                Provided learning support (organizational, research and study skills)

                                For undergraduate students needing additional support at McGill



Proof-reader         Provided support for students with specific learning disabilities,                        2008-2009

                                helping them to communicate clearly in a written format




Graduate Teaching Workshop, T-Pulse, Tomlinson Project McGill University                       January 2009

          Two-day workshop training science graduate students on learner-centered                                              

           teaching strategies for the sciences in the context of the latest research on

           learning theory.






Graduate Student Stipend Fellowship, Center for Global Climate Change (2009)


A.D. Latornell Conservation Symposium Grant (2008)


Doctoral Fellowship, Quebec Merit Fellowship for Foreign Students, FQRNT  (2005-present)


McGill Biology Department Top-up Scholarship, Graduate Training Committee, Department of Biology (2004)


Graduate Student Stipend Fellowship, Center for Global Climate Change (2004)


Award in support of research, Sigma Xi Committee on Grants in Aid of Research (2004)


Levinson Fellowship, McGill University and Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute (2003-2004)


Phi Beta Kappa inductee (2002-2003)


Xi Beta Kappa inductee (2003)


Environmental Studies Award for Excellence, Department of Earth and Environment, Mount Holyoke College (2003)