Staff Directory


Monika Calef, PhD

Associate Professor of Physical Geography

Phone: 949-480-4323

Fax: 949-480-4263



  • Ph.D., University of Virginia (Environmental Sciences)
  • M.S., Ohio University (Environmental Studies)
  • B.A., Augustana College (Geography and German)

Positions Held

  • At SUA since 2010
  • 2005-2010, Assistant Professor, University at Albany, SUNY
  • 2003-2005, Postdoc, University of Alaska Fairbanks
  • 2001-2003, Research Assistant, University of Alaska Fairbanks
  • 1998-2001, Teaching /Research Assistant, University of Virginia
  • 1994-1998, Public Services Associate, Institute for Local Government
                           Administration and Rural Development (ILGARD)

Research Interests

  • Climate change impacts on vegetation structure and composition
  • Land use change impacts on vegetation patterns on the landscape
  • Fire impacts on vegetation dynamics

Selected Papers, Publications, Presentations, & Exhibits

  • Kasischke, E.S., D. Verbyla, T.S. Rupp, A.D. McGuire, K.A. Murphy, J.L. Allen, E.E. Hoy, R. Jandt, P. Duffy, M. Calef, and M.R. Turetsky (2010). Alaska’s changing fire regime – Implications for the vulnerability of its boreal forests. Canadian Journal of Forest Research 40:1313-1324. doi:10.1139/X10-098.
  • Calef, M.P. (2010). Climate Change impacts on the boreal forest of Alaska. Geography Compass 4(2):67-80. DOI: 10.1111/j.1749-8198.2010.00310.x
  • Trainor, S.F., M. Calef, D. Natcher, F.S. Chapin, A.D. McGuire, O. Huntington, P. Duffy, T.S. Rupp, L. DeWilde, M. Kwart, N. Fresco, and A.L. Lovecraft (2009). Vulnerability and adaptation to climate-related fire impacts in rural and urban interior Alaska. Polar Research 28:100-118 DOI: 10.1111/j.1751-8369.2009.00101.x.
  • Calef, M.P., A.D. McGuire, and F.S. Chapin III (2008). Human influences on wildfire in Alaska from 1988 through 2005: An analysis of the spatial patterns of human impacts. Earth Interactions 12(1):1-17. DOI: 10.1175/2007EI220.1.
  • Chapin, F.S. III, S.F. Trainor, O. Huntington, A.L. Lovecraft, E. Zavaleta, D.C. Natcher, A.D. McGuire, J. Nelson, L. Ray, M. Calef, N. Fresco, H. Huntington, T.S. Rupp, L. DeWilde, and R.A. Naylor (2008). Increasing wildfire in the boreal forest: causes, consequences, and pathways to potential solutions of a wicked problem. Bioscience 58(6):531-540.
  • McGuire, A.D., J. Walsh, J. Kimball, J. Clein, S. Euskirchen, S. Drobot, U. Herzfeld, J. Maslanik, R. Lammers, M. Rawlins, C. Vorosmarty, T. Rupp, W. Wu, and M. Calef (2008). The Western Arctic Linkage Experiment (WALE): Overview and synthesis. Earth Interactions DOI: 10.1175/2008EI239.1.
  • Lapenis, A.G., G. B. Lawrence, S. Baily, B. Aparin, A. Shiklomanov, N. Speranskaya, M.S. Torn, and M. Calef (2008). Climatically driven loss of calcium in steppe soil as a sink for atmospheric carbon. Global Biogeochemical Cycles. doi:10.1029/2007GB003077.
  • Clein, J.S., A.D. McGuire, E.S. Euskirchen, and M. Calef. (2007) The effects of different climate input data sets on simulated carbon dynamics in the Western Arctic. Earth Interactions 11 (paper 12) DOI: 10.1175/EI229.1.
  • Natcher, D. C., M. Calef, O. Huntington, S. Trainor, H. Huntington, L. DeWilde, S. Rupp, and F. S. Chapin III. 2007. Factors contributing to the cultural and spatial variability of landscape burning by Native Peoples of Interior Alaska. Ecology and Society, Special Issue: Crossing Scales and Disciplines to Achieve Forest Sustainability 12(1): 7.
  • Calef, M.P., A.D. McGuire, T.S. Rupp, H.E. Epstein, and H.H. Shugart. 2005. Analysis of vegetation distribution in Interior Alaska and sensitivity to climate change using a --logistic regression approach. Journal of Biogeography 32:863-878.

Courses Taught at SUA

  • Modes of Inquiry
  • Physical Geography
  • Nature and Humanity
  • Introduction to Geographic Information Systems
  • Human Geography of the Pacific Rim (in prep)
  • Biogeography (in prep)
  • Terrestrial Plant Ecology (in prep)

Selected Honors & Awards

  • Dr. Nuala Gann-Drescher Award, 2010