ARCHIVED CONTENT: In December 2020, the CZO program was succeeded by the Critical Zone Collaborative Network (CZ Net) ×

Dawson E. Fairbanks


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Environmental Microbiology

PhD Student, Soil, Water and Environmental Science
Univ. of Arizona - University of Arizona

My research focuses on bridging microbiology and CZ biogeochemistry in the context of water and soil processes, including decomposition, weathering, carbon stabilization, carbon flow and water purification. To do this we are examining fungal, bacterial, and archaeal communities targeting changes in relative abundance of specific taxa and functional groups following fire disturbance at the Jemez River Basin site. Our approach spans –omics techniques (-genomic, -transcriptomic, and –proteomic), enzyme assays and paired biogeochemical analysis to gain an overall understanding into microbial community functional response to environmental perturbations. Targeted sampling incorporates depth and topography to identify spatial differentiation of soil microbial activity and observed biogeochemical measurements. These measurements will be used to build a predictive framework in informing evolution of CZ ‘hot spots’ of biogeochemical activity with respect to depth and topography.

CZO Publications