Scientists & Staff


Lauren Pile

Research Ecologist
University of Missouri
202 Anheuser Busch Natural Resources Building
Columbia, MO, 65211-7260
Phone: 573-875-5341 x233

Contact Lauren Pile

Research Interests

Lauren's research focuses on three primary areas: 1) development and improvement of control tactics and integrated management methods and strategies for non-native invasive plant infestations in central and mid-south US forests, 2) management strategies for promoting resilience or desired conditions in native plant communities and forest ecosystems degraded by invasive species or alterations to disturbance regimes, and 3) understand drivers of ecosystem and landscape change (i.e., disturbances and invasive species). Lauren's research is both the application of techniques used in silviculture and integrated vegetation management and the ecological understanding of varied plant communities including forests and other natural areas. In addition to controlling established populations, effective management may require building community resistance to invaders by simulating historically important ecological drivers. Lauren is interested in the rehabilitation of ecosystems following the removal of invaders, particularly in relation to legacy effects, secondary invasions, and predicting forest response to multiple forms of manipulation.

Why This Research is Important

This research is important because central hardwood forests are undergoing changes that threaten their long-term sustainability, diversity, and health; these changes include altered disturbance regimes (e.g., fire exclusion), inappropriate timber harvesting practices, expansion of non-native invasive species and undesirable native species, and climate change. Although forest managers are applying the best available information for restoring woodlands and savannas, the information needs by managers have outpaced scientific efforts.



  • Clemson University, Ph.D. Forest Resources Applied Forest Ecology & Invasive Species, 2015
  • Clemson University, Master Of Forest Resources Applied Forest Ecology & Invasive Species, 2011

Awards & Recognition

  • USDA Forest Service - Deputy Chief's Early Career Scientist Award, 2019 Recognized for outstanding research contributions and potential to shape future research and education in furthering the Forest Service mission.
  • Clemson University - Dwight A. Holder Award, 2018 Recognized for outstanding work and sustained achievement that fosters understanding, wise use, and conservation of natural and cultural resources.
  • Presidential Management Fellow, 2016

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Last modified: Monday, July 26, 2021