Diane Le Bouille

Currently, I am a PhD student working with Dr. Paul Armsworth, in the Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, University of Tennessee.

My research focuses on conservation planning and optimization. I use mathematical modeling to better understand and predict costs associated with protected areas, then spatial optimization approaches to inform reserve design and selection. I work directly with conservation organizations and practitioners to help guide conservation practices.

PhD Thesis

  • The Costs of Protected Areas in the U.S.

Research Interests

  • Conservation Ecology
  • Modeling, Mathematical Optimization
  • Quantitative Ecology
  • Conservation Planning
  • Spatial Analysis
  • Applied Conservation

Current Research Projects

Faced with rapid loss of species and habitats on which they depend, governments and NGOs worldwide invest billions of dollars every year to set aside lands for conservation. Optimal decision making and resource allocation tools have been developed to help organizations develop efficient conservation strategies. Provided with spatially explicit estimates of both conservation costs and ecological benefits, those tools can help decision makers identify areas offering the best return on investment (ROI). However, limited data regarding actual conservation costs has meant that most of those studies have relied on readily available proxies instead of actual cost data, and there is a risk that such estimates do not preserve the spatial pattern of variation in actual protected area acquisition costs.

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Management Costs

The time path of investments for the management of protected areas.

Reserve Selection and Cost Proxies

What is the effect of using potentially flawed cost proxies when identifying spatial priorities, and how much better could we do with actual cost data?


A couple ways to contact me...

  • Email and Phone

    +1 (865) 974 2820

  • Address

  • Office
    437C Hesler Biology Building
    1404 Circle Drive
    University of Tennessee
    Knoxville, TN 37996

    Departmental Address
    569 Dabney Hall
    1416 Circle Drive
    University of Tennessee
    Knoxville, TN 37996