Dr. André Franco is a soil ecologist who studies how changing climate and land-use regimes affect soil invertebrates and their interactions with plants in agricultural fields and native ecosystems from tropical to temperate environments.
André completed his doctorate in Soil Science at the University of São Paulo in Piracicaba, Brazil, on May 2015. His dissertation research addressed the responses of soil macroinvertebrates such as ants, termites, and earthworms to land-use change for bioenergy cropping and how those responses affect soil structure, nutrient availability, and carbon storage at a regional scale.
André moved to Colorado State University in Summer 2015. As a Research Scientist in the Department of Biology, he is working with Dr. Diana Wall and Dr. Osvaldo Sala (Arizona State University) on an NSF-funded research examining which mechanisms govern the responses of primary productivity to water availability in U.S. grassland ecosystems. His focus in this project is to study the sensitivity to water availability of root feeder nematodes and their predators and its linkages to above- and below-ground productivity from desert to humid grasslands.
Recently, André was awarded a CSU OVPR grant with Dr. Diana Wall and Dr. Bruno Sobral (CSU’s One Health Institute) to establish a collaboration between CSU and Universidade Federal do Pará, Belém, Brazil, to explore the diversity and distribution of soil organisms in Amazonian rainforests and arable lands.