Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History

Robert Soreng

Research Associate

I am principally interested in grasses (fam. Poaceae), and specialize in the taxonomy of cool season grasses (Pooideae), particularly the genus Poa (ca. 500 species world-wide).  Having spent 8 years conducting molecular research on relationships among grasses at family, subfamily, tribal and genus levels, I now am able to devote my time to the study these plants in the herbarium and the field, while continuing to collaborate with colleagues on molecular studies. Poa possibly has the most variation in breeding systems of any genus of plants, and I study this variation to better assess the nature of species in this genus.  I also specialize in grass nomenclature and help to maintain and update the grass data in TROPICOS (Missouri Bot. Gards. taxonomic database).

Department / Division
Education
  • BS, Oregon State University, 1978
  • MS, New Mexico State Universtity, 1980
  • PhD, New Mexico State University, 1986