Ben Zuckerberg named Vilas Associate

Ben Zuckerberg, an assistant professor in the Department of Forest & Wildlife Ecology, was among 26 faculty winners of the Vilas Associates Competition. The Vilas Associates Competition recognizes new and ongoing research of the highest quality and significance. Recipients are chosen competitively by the divisional Graduate School Research Committees on the basis of a detailed proposal.

Zuckerberg (right) assists a student in a field project on wintering birds. Photo: Wolfgang Hoffmann.

Zuckerberg’s research studied the environmental context and ecological consequences of colonizing accipiter hawks to a metropolitan area. In the 20th century, the number of Cooper’s hawks present in urban areas declined, but today, their populations are rebounding in these same landscapes. Zuckerberg set out to determine how the resurgence of avian predators affects the demographics and behavior of bird communities in metropolitan areas. Learn more about Zuckerberg’s work at his lab website.

The Vilas Associate competition is open to tenure-track and tenured faculty, from the assistant professor level to professors within 20 years of their tenure date. Winners receive up to two-ninths of research salary support (including the associated fringe costs) for both summers 2017 and 2018, as well as a $12,500 flexible research fund in each of the two fiscal years. Faculty paid on an annual basis are not eligible for the summer salary support but are eligible for the flexible fund portion of this award.