Robyn Burnham

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Robyn Burnham

Associate Paleobotany Curator, Museum of Paleontology; Associate Professor, Ecology and Evolutionary Biology; Associate Professor, Earth and Environmental Sciences

Office Location(s): 1023 Ruthven
Phone: 734.647.2585
Burnham webpage
View Curriculum Vitae

  • Affiliation(s)
    • Department of Earth and Environmental Sciences
    • Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology
    • Museum of Paleontology
    • University Herbarium
  • About

    Research Interests
    Dr. Burnham is currently involved in research on climbing plants of the Amazon Basin, especially in Ecuador, Peru and Bolivia on the lower flanks of the Andes Mountains. Her interests are in the community structure and species composition of Amazonian forests, as viewed via the lianas and vines that inhabit these forests. Particular interest has recently been focused on the impacts of human intervention in Amazonian forests from oil exploration, agriculture and gold mining. Continuing work on the paleontological history of the forests of Northern South America is carried out in her lab as well, with on-going research in the intermontane basins of Ecuador and the eastern basins of Bolivia.

    Graduate Students - David Marvin and Aaron Iverson

    Academic Background
    Dr. Burnham received her Ph.D. in Botany at the University of Washington in 1987. Her dissertation was on "Inferring vegetation from plant-fossil assemblages: effects of depositional environment and heterogeneity in the source vegetation on assemblages from modern and ancient fluvial-deltaic environments". Research was carried out in southern Mexico (Tabasco) and in the state of Washington in coal mines of the Puget Group. Her Masters Degree was also received from the University of Washington in 1983 on Foliar Morphological Analysis of the Ulmoideae (Ulmaceae) from the early Tertiary of western North America. She received her Bachelor's Degree from the University of California, Berkeley in 1980.


  • Education
    • Ph.D. Botany, University of Washington, 1987