Back to top


Development and integration of models simulating forest vegetation, wildfire, insect disturbance, and wildlife populations, to inform decision making for land management and species at risk.

learn more

Co-development and maintenance of the SpaDES suite of packages for R and development of other open-source tools for ecological simulation modeling and reproducible scientfic workflows.

learn more

Hands-on training for users of all skill levels, covering various topics including R programming, simulation modeling in SpaDES, reproducible research workflows, and best practices.

learn more

Ecological Modeling

Our team has extensive experience developing and integrating numerous SpaDES models simulating forest vegetation dynamics, wildfire, insect disturbance, and wildlife populations, to inform decision making for land management and species at risk.

Boreal ecosystem forecasts

We have been working with Natural Resources Canada and Environment and Climate Change Canada to implement various simulation components to inform forest, species, and land management under changing future conditions, as part of the Western Boreal Initiative (

Implemented using the SpaDES toolkit, we have been evaluating the cumulative effects of wildfire, key pests, and anthropogenic disturbances, and climate change on forest values.

Mountain pine beetle spread forecasts

Predicting the outbreak and spread dynamics of this insect in Alberta and Saskatchewan jack pine forests, to evaluate control measures to mitigate a potentially devastating loss of forest habitat and timber supply.

The core model, implemented with the SpaDES toolkit, can be integrated with other forest succession, wildfire, and other models to inform broader-scale land management.

Historic and future ranges of variability

These models integrate several forest succession and wildfire simulation components using the SpaDES toolkit. Ongoing work explores model dynamics, sensitivity, and further refinements for multiple study regions within western Canada.

back to top



A collection of R packages for implementing a variety of event-based models, with a focus on spatially explicit models. These include raster-based, event-based, and agent-based models. The core simulation components are built upon a discrete event simulation (DES) framework that facilitates modularity, and easily enables the user to include additional functionality by running user-built simulation modules. Included are numerous tools to visualize rasters and other maps, and caching methods for reproducible simulations.

SpaDES facilitates a tight coupling of simulation and data within a modular framework that allows easy updates to model components. Our development cycle follows current best practices for reproducible scientific computing workflows and, where possible, we have followed an open-access model for software platform and simulation model development.

View on CRAN; GitHub; website.


Landscape connectivity, habitat, and protected area network modeling. Given a landscape resistance surface, creates grains of connectivity and minimum planar graph models that can be used to calculate effective distances for landscape connectivity at multiple scales.

View on CRAN; GitHub; website.

back to top

Workshops & Training

We offer workshops covering a range of topics for beginner, intermediate, and advanced users, which can be tailored to your group’s needs. Learn the tools and best practices to advance your research goals and objectives.

R programming

  1. R programming;
  2. Working with spatial data;
  3. Package development.

Simulation modeling using SpaDES

  1. ecological modeling;
  2. module development;
  3. module integration;
  4. managing large projects.

Reproducible research workflows

  1. Scripting;
  2. Version control;
  3. Package management;
  4. Managing data;
  5. Communicating results (using Rmarkdown, shiny)

back to top