Dr Walsh is the Lyle V. Jones Distinguished Professor, Department of Geography; Director, Center for Galapagos Studies, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill; and Co-Director of the UNC-USFQ Galapagos Science Center, Galapagos Archipelago of Ecuador
Together, Walsh & Mena co-founded the Galapagos Initiative and formed a strategic partnership between their two institutions. The central achievement of the Galapagos Initiative is the 2011 construction of the 20,000-square-foot Galapagos Science Center that emphasizes research, education, and community outreach, achieved through interdisciplinary and integrative studies conducted in the GSC labs – genetics and microbiology, marine ecology, terrestrial ecology, and spatial analysis and modelling. In addition to informing conservation efforts for the Galapagos Islands, their research provides a global template for the study of other conflicted and challenged island ecosystems around the globe. Their research interests include human-environment interactions, coupled human-natural systems, resource conservation, and cutting-edge geographic methods, including, remote sensing, geographic information systems, and spatial analysis and modeling.