University of Minnesota
University of Minnesota
College of Biological Sciences

Associate Professor Jacques C. Finlay

Ph.D., University of California, Berkeley, 2000
Phone: 612-624-4672 Fax: 612-624-6777

Graduate Faculty Memberships

Conservation Biology; Ecology, Evolution and Behavior, Natural Resources Science and Mangement and Water Resources Science

Research Interests

Limnology; biogeochemistry; food web and ecosystem ecology; land-water interactions; stable isotope applications in ecological research


I am broadly interested in the ecology of aquatic ecosystems, and their interaction with surrounding natural and human altered landscapes. I pursue research questions at many scales and levels of organization, using experimental, comparative and stable isotope approaches. I am particularly excited by interdisciplinary, collaborative research that integrates across multiple spatial and temporal scales.

My current research areas include investigation of energy flow regulation in river food webs, impacts of introduced species on aquatic ecosystems, surface and groundwater interactions in stream carbon and nutrient cycles, and carbon and nitrogen biogeochemistry of boreal and arctic watersheds. A pervasive theme in much of this research is that both food webs and ecosystems interact across traditional boundaries of ecological investigation through fluxes of elements, organic matter, and organisms. I am interested in understanding the nature and controls of such interactions, and their role in regulating the productivity and structure of aquatic and terrestrial ecosystems.


Selected Publications

Finlay, J.C., G.E. Small, and R.W. Sterner. 2013. Human influences on nitrogen removal in lakes. Science.342 (6155),247-250. DOI:10.1126/science.1242575.

Baron, J.S., E.K. Hall, B.T. Nolan, J.C. Finlay, E. Bernhardt, J.A. Harrison, F. Chan, E.W. Boyer, 2012. The Interactive Effects of Human-Derived Nitrogen Loading and Climate Change on Aquatic Ecosystems of the United States. Biogeochemistry doi 10.1007/s10533-012-9788-y

Tsui M.T.K., J.D. Blum, J.C. Finlay, S.J. Balogh, S.Y. Kwon, and Y.H. Nollet. 2013. Photodegradation of Methylmercury in Stream Ecosystems. Limnology and Oceanography 58(1), 2013, 13–22 doi:10.4319/lo.2013.58.1.0013

Ishikawa, N.F., H. Doi, and J.C. Finlay. 2012. Global meta-analysis for controlling factors on carbon stable isotope ratio of lotic periphyton. Oecologia. DOI 10.1007/s00442-012-2308-x

Finlay, J.C. 2011. Stream size and human influences on ecosystem production in river networks. Ecosphere. 2(8): doi:10.1890/ES11-00071.1

Dalzell, B., J. King, D. Mulla, J.C. Finlay, and G. Sands. 2011. Subsurface drainage effects on dissolved organic carbon export from agricultural ecosystems. JGR- Biogeosciences VOL. 116, G02023, doi:10.1029/2010JG001540.

Finlay, J.C., J.M. Hood, M.P. Limm, M.E. Power, J.D. Schade, and J.R. Welter. 2011. Light-mediated thresholds in stream water nutrient composition in a river network. Ecology. 92, No. 1: 140-150. 10.1890/09-2243.1

Sabo, J.L., J.C. Finlay, T. Kennedy, and D.M. Post. 2010. The Role of Discharge Variation in Scaling of Drainage Area and Food Chain Length in Rivers. Science 330:965-967 DOI: 10.1126/science.1196005

Tsui, M.T.-K., J.C. Finlay, and E.A. Nater. 2009. Mercury Bioaccumulation in a River Network. Environmental Science & Technology. 43(18): 7016–7022. DOI: 10.1021/es901525w

Additional Links

Lab Webpage

IonE - Institute on the Environment

National Center for Earth-Surface Dynamics

St. Anthony Fall Laboratory