Berry has been a staff scientist at Carnegie since 1972. Over the years he has pioneered laboratory and field techniques for understanding the exchange carbon dioxide and water between plants and the atmosphere. His models and methods are widely used for understanding local, regional, and global matter and energy fluxes, with important applications to crop yields, water resources, and climate change.
“Joe Berry has been a driving force in establishing the field of global ecology,” remarked Chris Field, director of the Department of Global Ecology. “His work is recognized as foundational for the field, and few important papers don’t cite one or more of Joe’s papers. Three of his papers have been cited over 1,000 times each, and the collection of his papers have more than 10,000 citations.”
Berry’s seminal papers include studies on modeling photosynthesis and water loss and a method for inferring water-use efficiency based on the composition of a leaf.
“Joe has made many contributions to science and to Carnegie, including playing a key role in the founding of our Department of Global Ecology,” remarked Carnegie president Richard Meserve. “It is great to see him recognized and even better to have him be a part of Carnegie.”
Berry received his B.S in Chemistry from the University of California at Davis in 1963 and then his masters in soil science from Davis in 1966. He was awarded a Ph.D. in botany from the University of British Columbia in 1970.