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Faculty Profiles

Nathan Basiliko

Nathan Basiliko 

Associate Professor


Science, Engineering and Architecture


LL-112, Vale Living With Lakes Centre 

Sudbury Campus


705.675.1151 ext 4150705.675.1151 ext 4150

705.675.1151 ext


I am a faculty member at the Vale Living with Lakes Centre (where my office and lab is housed) with an academic appointment in the Department of Biology and cross-appointment in the School of the Environment. Please contact me if you are interested in finding out more about undergraduate, masters, or PhD research opportunities in my group.

Prior to joining Laurentian University in July 2013, I was a faculty member in the Department of Geography at the University of Toronto- Mississauga campus (formerly known as Erindale College) since 2006. I completed a post-doctoral fellowship in the Faculty of Forestry at the University of British Columbia and also have worked via UK Royal Society and DAAD (German Academic Exchange Service)- funded exchanges at the University of Warwick in Coventry, England (Department of Biological Sciences) and The Max Planck Institute for Terrestrial Microbiology in Marburg, Germany. 

I am an Associate Editor for the Canadian Journal of Soil Science and FEMS Microbiology Letters and a Review Editor for Frontiers in Microbiology. I am currently serving on the Canadian Society of Soil Science Council as Eastern Councillor (elected in 2015).


  • BS Cornell University (1999)
  • PhD McGill University (2005)

Academic Appointments

Department of Biology

School of the Environment (cross-appointment)

On The Web

My webpage at the Vale Living with Lakes Centre:

Publications on Google Scholar:

A TEDx talk I gave in 2014:


My work explores the microbial role in wetland and forest biogeochemistry. In particular I focus on microbial responses to human-induced environmental changes that have consequences for greenhouse gas fluxes, nutrient, pollutant, and carbon dynamics, as well as broader ecosystem sustainability. Most of my current research projects are in applied settings (e.g. in managed forests) with important private sector and governmental research partners. However I have also an interest in exploring more general controls on microbial diversity in soils, links between diversity and activity, and am interested in how different soil microbial communities transform plant tissues into soil organic matter and then subsequently decompose this organic matter to mineral products, including greenhouse gases.  Field research sites span the north temperate (Great Lakes St Lawrence Forest) and boreal forests of eastern and central Canada and peatlands (globally important carbon-accumulating wetlands with organic soils) across Canada and the USA.

Current students (at Laurentian University and the University of Toronto)

• Michael Carson (PhD candidate, Laurentian University)

• Jessica Arteaga (PhD student, Laurentian University) 

• Jesse Hoage (MSc student, Laurentian University)  

• Shanay Williams-Johnson (MSc student, Laurentian University; co-supervisor with Nadia Mykytczuk)

• Kurt Yakimovich (MSc student, Laurentian University; co-supervisor with Nadia Mykytczuk)

• Jason Shabaga (PhD candidate, University of Toronto)

• Genevieve Noyce (PhD candidate, University of Toronto; co-supervisor with R Fulthorpe)

• Bryce Robinson (undergraduate honours thesis student, Laurentian Unviersity)

Past students (and year completed)

• Carolyn Winsborough (PhD 2015)

• Galen Guo (MSc 2015)

• Adam Gorgolewski (MSc-F 2015)

• Gurpreet Aulakh (undergraduate 2015)

• Jennifer Pichette (undergraduate 2015)

• Emily Smenderovic (MSc-F 2014)

• Michael Preston (PhD 2013)

• Michael McTavish (undergraduate 2012)

• Stephanie Pugliese (undergraduate 2012)

• Darcie McNeill (undergraduate 2012)

• Tara Sackett (PDF 2012)

• Varun Gupta(MSc 2011)

• Aaron Godin (undergraduate 2010)

• Kristine Haynes (undergraduate 2010)

• Phil Rudz (undergraduate 2010)

• Cori Armés (MSc 2009)

• Britney Myers (undergraduate 2009)

• Varun Gupta (undergraduate 2009)

• Natalia Voloshchuk (undergraduate 2009)

• Carolyn Winsborough (undergraduate 2008)


In the 2015-16 academic year, I will teach

Biology 2026EL Introduction to Microbiology and Biology 4076EL Ecosystem Ecology

(Note that Ecosystem Ecology will be taught every 2 years alternating with Biology 3026EL, Applied and Environmental Microbiology)


  • Canada Research Chair in Environmental Microbiology (2013-2018)
  • Dean's Excellence Award (U of T Mississauga, 2010)


On Google Scholar:  

I also was a contributing author to the first UN-FAO Status of the World's Soil Reources Report released in December 2015