Dr. Taniya RoyChowdhury is a soil microbiologist who studies soil systems at both the broad ecological scale and the complex microbial scale to assess change and resilience in response to climate change. Microbes play a large role in the carbon cycle, emitting greenhouse gasses and working alongside plants to cycle nutrients. Studying their responses to change and expanding those insights across an ecosystem can help us better manage soil for climate change.
Dr. RoyChowdhury continues to advance the field of soil science through primary research and is the author of over 25 published papers that focus on soil microbial processes, greenhouse gas dynamics, carbon sequestration and nutrient cycling. Her topics of study have varied from the impacts of seasonal and tidal wetland drawdowns on methane production, to the impact of drought on prairie grasslands, to the connection between land-use change to microbial processes.
Dr. RoyChowdhury earned her Ph.D. in soil science from the Ohio State University and went on to two postdoctoral fellowships with the U.S. Department of Energy where she worked on Arctic permafrost systems, identifying the importance of diverse microbial processes in controlling the loss of carbon from vulnerable ecosystems as well as conducted experiments that helped predict physiological responses to change from microbial communities. She has also worked as research faculty in the Department of Environmental Science and Technology at the University of Maryland, leading wetland restoration and carbon sequestration research, and with the USDA as a research soil scientist. Dr. RoyChowdhury also participates in proposal review panels for various granting agencies.
Dr. RoyChowdhury draws her inspiration and motivation to keep working towards a sustainable future from her young toddler and hopes a better fundamental understanding of soil systems will help us accomplish that.