Courtney Creamer


My research is broadly focused on how the chemistry and accessibility of soil organic matter influences its turnover and stabilization, and subsequently, how this impacts the functioning of natural and managed ecosystems.  Many of the global challenges we face (climate change, biodiversity loss, food security) are dependent upon soil processes, and my work examines current controls on soil carbon and nitrogen stability with the aim of predicting and managing the response of soils to global change scenarios.  My particular expertise lies in linking the quantity, accessibility, and chemical composition of soil carbon and nitrogen to microbial activity and community composition, using a variety of methods.  Previous projects have focused plant-soil-microbe feedbacks in response along gradients of grassland and rangeleland degradation (Australia and Texas), nutrient enrichment, and edaphic properties.



Ph.D., Purdue University, Earth, Atmospheric, and Planetary Sciences, 2012
B.A., Miami University (Ohio), Microbiology, 2007

Professional Experience

2015 - present     Research Microbiologist (post-doc), USGS, Menlo Park CA
2012 - 2015         Office of the Chief Executive Postdoctoral Fellow, CSIRO, Adelaide SA, Australia
2008 - 2012         Graduate Research and Teaching Assistant, Purdue University, West Lafayette IN
2006 - 2007         Undergraduate Research Assistant, Miami University, Oxford OH
2005                      Laboratory Intern, Case Western Reserve University, Cleveland OH





Judy, J., Kirby, J.K., Creamer, C., McLaughlin, M.J., Fiebiger, C., Wright, C., Cavagnaro, T., Bertsch, P.M. (2015). Effects of silver sulfide nanomaterials on mycorrhizal colonization of tomato plants and soil microbial communities in biosolid-amended soil.  Environmental Pollution 206, 256-263.

Creamer, C., Macdonald, L., Baldock, J., Sanderman, J., Farrell, M. (2015).  Divergent responses of organic matter composition to incubation temperature.  Geoderma 259-260, 279-287.

Wang, R., Dungait, J.A.J., Creamer, C., Cai, J., Li, B., Xu, Z., Zhang, Y., Ma, Y., Jiang, Y. (2015).  Carbon and nitrogen dynamics in soil aggregates under long-term N and water addition in a temperate steppe grassland.  Soil Science Society of America Journal 79, 527-535.

Creamer, C., de Menezes, A.B., Krull, E., Newton-Walters, R.*, Sanderman, J., Farrell, M. (2015).  Microbial community structure mediates response of soil C decomposition to litter addition and warming.  Soil Biology and Biochemistry 80, 175-188.

Creamer, C., Jones, D.L, Baldock, J., Farrell, M. (2014). Stoichiometric controls upon low molecular weight carbon decomposition.  Soil Biology and Biochemistry 79, 50-56.

Creamer, C., Filley, T., Boutton, T.  (2013). Long-term incubations of size and density separated soil fractions to inform soil organic carbon decay dynamics.  Soil Biology and Biochemistry 57, 496-503.

Creamer, C., Filley, T., Olk, D., Stott, D., Boutton, T., Dooling, V*.  (2012). Changes to soil organic N dynamics with leguminous woody plant encroachment into grasslands. Biogeochemistry 113, 307-321.

Creamer, C., Filley, T., Olk D., Plante, A., Peltre, C., Top, S., Boutton T. (2012). Degree of woody encroachment into grasslands controls soil carbohydrate and amino compound changes during long term laboratory incubation. Organic Geochemistry 52, 23-31.

Creamer, C., Filley, T., Boutton, T., Oleynik, S., Kantola, I. (2011). Controls on soil carbon accumulation during woody plant encroachment into grasslands:  Evidence from physical fractionation, soil respiration, and the isotopic composition of respired CO2Soil Biology and Biochemistry 43, 1678-1687.