Earth Scientist
Earth Scientist


Katie Arkema is a senior Earth scientist in the Coastal Science Division. Her research focuses on the effects of global change on coupled human-natural systems. She is particularly interested in the development of innovative solutions to support the energy and resilience needs of coastal communities. Katie frequently partners with leaders of countries, communities, and a variety of organizations to explore the ways in which ecosystems benefit society and to understand how decisions made by key actors and institutions influence ecological dynamics and human well-being. 

At PNNL Katie is leveraging her experience with ecosystem services to foster integrated, participatory, and equitable approaches to designing and implementing renewable energy technology. Previously, Katie was lead scientist at the Natural Capital Project at Stanford University. There she led an interdisciplinary team of scientists in modeling the role of coastal ecosystems for protecting vulnerable communities from sea level rise and storms, while providing other benefits such as nursery habitat for fisheries, tourism opportunities, and carbon storage and sequestration. 

Katie’s research has been published in Science, Nature, and Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America (PNAS). Her work has informed coastal resilience planning, sustainable development, climate adaptation, and ecosystem restoration in the United States, Latin America, the Caribbean. In 2012 Katie was selected as a Nexus Fulbright Fellow. She holds a PhD in Ecology, Evolution and Marine Biology from the University of California, Santa Barbara and a BA in ecology with a minor in Latin American studies from Princeton University.


  • BA in Ecology and Evolution of Biology, Princeton University
  • PhD in Ecology, Evolution and Marine Biology, University of California – Santa Barbara



  • Arkema, K., J. Delevaux, J. Silver, S. Winder, L. Schile-Beers, N. Bood, S. Crooks, K. Douthwaite, C. Durham, P. Hawthorne, T. Hickey, C. Mattis, A. Rosado, M. Ruckelshaus, M. von Unger, A. Young. 2023. Evidence-based target setting informs blue carbon strategies for Nationally Determined Contributions. Nature Ecology and Evolution. 7, 1045–1059
  • Madden, I. A., A. Mariwala, M. Lindhart, S. Narayan, K. Arkema, M. W. Beck, J. W. Baker, J. Suckale. 2023. Quantifying the fragility of coral reefs to hurricane impacts: a case study of the Florida Keys and Puerto Rico. Environmental Research Letters. 18 024034.


  • Guerry, A., K., J. Silver, J. Beagle, K. Wyatt, K. Arkema, J. Lowe, P. Hamel, R. Griffin, S. Wolny, E. Plane, M. Griswold, H. Papendick, J. Sharma. 2022.  Protection and restoration of coastal habitats yield multiple benefits for urban residents as sea levels rise. npj Urban Sustainability 2:13
  • Bridges, T., J. M. Smith1, J. King, J. Simm, M. Dillard, J. de Vries, D. Reed, C. Piercy, B. van Zanten, K. Arkema et al. 2022. Coastal Natural and Nature-Based Features: International Guidelines for Flood Risk Management. Frontiers in Built Environment.


  • Wyatt, K., K. Arkema, S. Wells-Moultrie, J. Silver, B. Lashley, A. Thomas, J. Kuiper, A. Guerry, M. Ruckelshaus. 2021. Integrated and innovative scenario approaches for sustainable development planning in The Bahamas. Ecology and Society. 26(4):23.
  • Wyatt K, K Arkema, S Wells-Moultrie, J Silver, B Lashley, A Thomas, J Kuiper, A Guerry, and M Ruckelshaus. “Integrated and innovative scenario approaches for sustainable development planning in The Bahamas.” Ecology and Society, In press
  • Hammel M, R Griffin, K Arkema, and A Guerry. 2021. Economic evaluation of sea-level rise adaptation strongly influenced by hydrodynamic feedbacks. In Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 118(29):e2025961118,
  • Hammel P, M Hamann, JJ Kuiper, E Andersson, KK Arkema, JM Silver, GC Daily, and AD Guerry. 2021. “Blending ecosystem service and resilience perspectives in planning of natural infrastructure: Lessons from the San Francisco Bay Area.” Frontiers in Environmental Science,
  • Wedding L, M Moritsch, G Verutes, K Arkema, E Hartge, J Reiblich, J Douglass, and A Strong. 2021. “Incorporating blue carbon sequestration benefits into sub-national climate policies.” Global Environmental Change, 69:102206,
  • Arkema K, D Fisher, K Wyatt, S Wood, and H Payne. 2021. “Advancing sustainable development and protected area management with social media-based tourism data.” Sustainability, 13(5):2427,


  • Ruckelshaus M, BG Reguero, K Arkema, R Guerrero-Compeán, K Wheeks, A Bailey, and J Silver. 2020. “Harnessing new data technologies for nature-based solutions in assessing and mapping risk in coastal zones.” International Journal of Disaster Risk Reduction Pages, (51):101795,
  • DeAngelis BM, A Sutton-Grier, A Colden, K Arkema, et al. 2020. “Social Factors Key to Landscape-Scale Coastal Restoration: Lessons Learned from Three U.S. Case Studies.” Sustainability, 12(3):869,
  • Zhang Y, M Ruckelshaus, KK Arkema, B Han, F Lu, H Zheng, and Z Ouyang. 2020. “Synthetic vulnerability assessment to inform climate-change adaptation along an urbanized coast of Shenzhen, China.” Journal of Environmental Management, 255: 109915. doi:10.1016/j.jenvman.2019.109915


  • Silver J, K Arkema, RM Griffin, B Lashley, M Lemay, S Maldonado, SH Moultrie, M Ruckelshaus, S Schill, A Thomas, K Wyatt, and G Verutes. 2019. “Advancing Coastal Risk Reduction Science and Implementation by Accounting for Climate, Ecosystems, and People.” Frontiers in Marine Science. doi: 10.3389/fmars.2019.00556
  • Arkema K, L Rogers, J Toft, A Mesher, K Wyatt, S Albury-Smith, S Moultrie, M Ruckelshaus, and J Samhouri. 2019. “Integrating fisheries management into sustainable development planning.” Ecology and Society, 24(2):1.
  • Arkema K, R, Bennet, A Dausman, and L Materman. 2019. “United States: Blending Finance Mechanisms for Coastal Resilience and Climate Adaptation.” Green Growth That Works: Natural Capital Policy and Finance Mechanisms Around the World. Eds. Mandle, Ouyang, Salzman, Daily. Island Press.
  • Arkema K. 2019. “Caribbean: Implementing Successful Development and Investment Strategies.” Green Growth That Works: Natural Capital Policy and Finance Mechanisms Around the World. Eds. Mandle, Ouyang, Salzman, Daily. Island Press.
  • Ruckelshaus M, G Daily, S Anstee, K Arkema, et al. 2019. “Scaling Pathways for Inclusive Green Growth.” Green Growth That Works: Natural Capital Policy and Finance Mechanisms Around the World. Eds. Mandle, Ouyang, Salzman, Daily. Island Press.
  • Gittman RK, CJ Baillie, K Arkema, et al. 2019. “Voluntary restoration: mitigations silent partner in the quest to reverse coastal wetland loss in the USA. Policy and Practice Reviews.” Frontiers in Marine Science.
  • Rodolfo S, Chávez, TJ Bouma, BI van Tussenbroek, K Arkema, et al. 2019. “The Incorporation of Biophysical and Social Components in Coastal Management.” Estuaries and Coasts, 42, 1695-1708.
  • Chaplin-Kramer R, RP Sharp, C Weil, EM Bennett, U Pascual, AL Vogl, K Arkema, et al. 2019. “Global modeling of nature’s contributions to people.” Science 366(6462): 255-258. DOI:10.1126/science.aaw3372
  • Keeler B, P Hamel, T McPhearson, MH Hamann, ML Donahue, K Meza Prado, K Arkema, G Bratman, K Brauman, JC Finlay, AD Guerry, SE Hobbie, JA Johnson, GK MacDonald, RI McDonald, N Neverisky, SA Wood, et al. 2019. “The value of urban ecosystem services: A review of social, ecological, and technical moderators.” Nature Sustainability, 2, 29–38.
  • Littlefield C, E Nelson, B Dittbrenner, J Withey, K Arkema, and J Lawler. 2019. Ecosystem-based Adaptation in Climate Change and Biodiversity (eds T Lovejoy and L Hannah). New Haven & London. Yale University Press.
  • Arkema K and J Samhouri. 2019. Living on the edge: demography and abundance of a kelp forest epiphyte. Diversity, 11(8):120.


  • Selig E, DG Hole, EH Allison, K Arkema, et al. 2018. “Mapping global human dependence on marine ecosystems.” Conservation Letters, 12:e12617. DOI: 10.1111/conl.12617
  • Sutton-Grier A, R Gittman, K Arkema, et al. 2018. Investing in natural and nature-based infrastructure: building better along our coasts. Sustainability. Volume 10 doi:10.3390/su10020523


  • Arkema K and M Ruckelshaus. 2017. “Transdisciplinary research for conservation and sustainable development planning in the Caribbean.” Conservation in the Anthropocene Ocean: Interdisciplinary Science in Support of Nature and People. Levin, P&M. Poe, Eds.:pp. San Diego, CA: Elsevier.
  • Arkema K, S Scychers, and C Shephard. 2017. “Living Shorelines for nature and people.” Shorelines: Living, enhanced, restored in the modern era (eds. DM Bilkovic, M Mitchell, J Toft, M La Peyre) Taylor & Francis Group and CRC Press; CRC Press Marine Science Series.
  • Wyatt K, R Griffin, A Guerry, M Ruckelshaus, M Fogarty, and K Arkema. 2017. “Habitat risk assessment for regional ocean planning in the U.S. Northeast and Mid-Atlantic.” PLOS ONE.
  • Arkema K, R Griffin, S Maldonado, J Silver, J Suckale, and A Guerry. 2017. “Linking social, ecological and physical science to advance natural and nature-based protection for coastal communities.” Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences. The Year in Ecology and Conservation Biology. DOI: 10.1111/nyas.13322
  • Verutes G, K Akema, C Clarke-Samuels, S Wood, A Rosenthal, S Rosado, M Canto, N Bood, and M Ruckelshaus. 2017. “Integrated Planning that Safeguards Ecosystems and Balances Multiple Objectives in Coastal Belize.” International Journal of Biodiversity Science, Ecosystem Services & Management, 13(3):1-17.


  • Guannel G, K Arkema, P Ruggiero, and G Verutes. 2016. “The Power of Three: Coral Reefs, Seagrasses and Mangroves Protect Coastal Regions and Increase their Resilience.” PLOS ONE. 11: e0158094.
  • Ruckelshaus M, G Guannel, K Arkema, G Verutes, R Griffin, A Guerry, J Silver, J Ferries, J Brenner, and A Rosenthal. 2016. “Evaluating the benefits of green infrastructure for coastal areas: Location, location, location.” Coastal Management, 44: 504–516.


  • Arkema K, G Verutes, S Wood, C Clarke, M Canto, S Rosado, A Rosenthal, M Ruckelshaus, G Guannel, J Toft, J Faries, JM Silver, R Griffin, and A D Guerry. 2015. “Embedding ecosystem services in coastal planning leads to better outcomes for people and nature.” Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 112(24):7390–7395, doi: 10.1073/pnas.1406483112
  • Guannel G, P Ruggiero, K Arkema, J Faries, M Pinsky, A Guerry, and G Gelfenbaum. 2015. “Integrated modeling framework to quantify coastal protection services provided by vegetation.” Journal of Geophysical Research-Oceans, 120(1):324-345. doi: 10.1002/2014JC009821


  • Arkema K, G Verutes, J Bernhardt, C Clarke, M Canto, S Rosado, S Wood, M Ruckelshaus, A Rosenthal, and M McField. 2014. “Assessing habitat risk from human activities to inform coastal and marine spatial planning in Belize.” Environmental Research Letters 9:114016.
  • Tallis H, J Lubencho, and 238 signatories. 2014. “Working together: a call for inclusive conservation.” Nature 515(7525):27-28 doi:10.1038/515027a
  • Rosenthal A, G Verutes, E McKenzie, K Arkema, N Bhagabati, L Bremer, N Olwero, and A Vogl. 2014. “Ecosystem Service Assessments: Process Matters.” International Journal of Biodiversity Science, Ecosystem Services, and Management, doi/pdf/10.1080/21513732.2014.966149
  • Langridge S, E Hartge, R Clark, K Arkema, G Verutes, E Prahler, S Stoner-Duncan, D Revell, M Caldwell, A Guerry, M Ruckelshaus, A Abeles, C Coburn, and K O’Connor. 2014. “Key lessons for incorporating natural capital into regional climate adaptation planning and implementation.” Ocean and Coastal Management, 95:189–197.


  • Nelson E, P Kareiva, M Ruckelshaus, K Arkema, G Geller, E Girvetz, D Goodrich, V Matzek, M Pinsky, W Reid, M Saunders, D Semmens, and H Tallis. 2013. “Climate change's impact on key ecosystem services and the human well-being they support in the United States.” Frontiers in Ecology and the Environment 11: 483-493.
  • Pinsky ML, G Guannel, and K Arkema. 2013. “Quantifying wave attenuation to inform coastal habitat conservation.” Ecosphere 4:art95.
  • Toft JE, JL Burke, MP Carey, CK Kim, G Spiridonov, M Marsik, DA Sutherland, K Arkema, et al. 2013. “From mountains to sound: modeling the sensitivity of Dungeness crab and Pacific oyster to land-sea interactions in Hood Canal, WA.” ICES Journal of Marine Science 71(3):725-738.
  • Arkema K, G Guannel, G Verutes, S Wood, A Guerry, M Ruckelshaus, P Kareiva, M Lacayo, and J Silver. 2013. “Coastal habitats protect people and property from sea level rise and storms.” Nature Climate Change 3:913–918.
  • Carey MP, PS Levin, H Townsend, TJ Minello, GR Sutton, TB Francis, CJ Harvey, JE Toft, K Arkema, et al. 2013. “Characterizing coastal foodwebs with qualitative links to bridge the gap between the theory and the practice of ecosystem-based management.” ICES Journal of Marine Science 71(3):713-724.


  • Kim C-K, JE Toft, M Papenfus, G Verutes, AD Guerry, MH Ruckelshaus, K Arkema, et al. 2012. “Catching the Right Wave: Evaluating Wave Energy Resources and Potential Compatibility with Existing Marine and Coastal Uses.” PLoS ONE 7:e47598.
  • Guerry AD, MH Ruckelshaus, K Arkema, et al. 2012. “Balancing Benefits from Nature: Using ecosystem services as the currency for coastal and marine spatial planning.” International Journal of Biodiversity Science, Ecosystem Services & Management, 8(1-2):107-121. doi: 10.1080 /21513732.2011.64 7835
  • Arkema K and JF Samhouri. 2012. “Linking ecosystem health to ecosystem services.” American Fisheries Society Symposium Special Volume. 79:9–25.


  • Gutiérrez JC Jones, J Byers, K Arkema, et al. 2010. “Physical ecosystem engineers and the functioning of estuaries and coasts.” Chapter 5, in Volume 7: Functioning of Estuaries and Coastal Ecosystems, (eds., CHR Heip, CJM, Philippart, and JJ Middelburg) in the Treatise on Estuarine and Coastal Science (series eds., E Wolanski, and D McLusky), Elsevier.


  • Arkema K, D Reed, and S Schroeter. 2009. “Direct and indirect effects of giant kelp determine benthic community structure and dynamics.” Ecology 90:3126-3127
  • Arkema K. 2009. “Flow-mediated feeding in the field: consequences for the performance and abundance of a sessile marine invertebrate.” Marine Ecology Progress Series 388:207-220.
  • Reed D, A Rassweiler, and K Arkema. 2009. “Density derived estimates of standing crop and net primary production in the giant kelp Macrocystis pyrifera.” Marine Biology. 156:2077–2083.


  • Reed D, A Rassweiler, and K Arkema. 2008. “Biomass rather than growth rate determines variation in net primary production by giant kelp.” Ecology 89:2493-505.
  • Rassweiler A, K Arkema, and D Reed. 2008. “Net primary production, growth and standing crop of Macrocystis pyrifera in southern California.” Ecology 89:2086.


  • Gaylord B, J Rosman, D Reed, J Koseff, J Fram, S MacIntyre, K Arkema, et al. 2007. “Spatial patterns of flow and their modification within and around a giant kelp forest.” Limnology and Oceanography 52:1838-1852.


  • Arkema K, S Abramson, and B Dewsbury. 2006. “Marine ecosystem-based management: from characterization to implementation.” Frontiers in Ecology and the Environment 4:525-532.