Erik has been teaching, designing and consulting in the field of sustainability of food systems and ecological planning since 2006, providing education and consultation on sustainable agriculture and permaculture systems for both homesteading and large scale farming operations in a number of states across the US. Erik’s primary focus in this area has been developing diversified agriculturally productive systems based on site-specific ecological context to enhance site productivity and conservation value.
Erik relocated to State College in January 2015 to obtain a PhD in Ecology, researching and designing agroforestry and sustainable agricultural strategies for social (economic and cultural) and ecological resilience. Concurrently, he is coordinating an agroforestry professional development training program for the Northeast/Mid-Atlantic region to promote tree/shrub cropping systems for enhanced economic and environmental sustainability for the eastern United States. Erik sees the production of food and resources as not to be isolated on a heavily managed farms, but integrated into the place and social context of the community for which the managed systems provides. Thus, leading to a cultural perspective on honoring the resource, labor and experience for how it produced, processed and consumed.