Ronald Amundson is professor in the Department of Environmental Science, Policy and Management. Amundson’s research focuses on the role of soils in the Earth’s carbon and nitrogen cycles, processes controlling trace gas emissions from soils and the effect of climate on soil weathering and erosion processes. He has worked with colleagues to quantify the human footprint on soil diversity in the U.S., and is involved in efforts to link bio- and geodiversity in research and land planning. Much of his research has involved the use of stable and radioactive isotopes for tracing biological processes or for developing new substrates for dating. Currently, his work is focused on bio-geophysical processes in the Atacama Desert of Chile, and how these processes fundamentally change as rainfall declines, and how this signal can be used to better decipher the history of Mars from the chemistry of its soils.