Dr. Gerwing has studied the impacts of logging on forest ecosystems and investigated ways those impacts might be mitigated through improved management practices. His work in the Brazilian Amazon centered on the ecology and management proliferation of lianas (i.e., woody vines).
His current research focuses on the design and implementation of adaptive management studies to improve the effectiveness of forest ecosystem restoration projects. He is currently working with the Clackamas County Stewardship Partners to develop and monitor "stewardship contract" forest ecosystem restoration projects on the Mt. Hood National Forest. The goal of this innovative approach to forest management is to develop projects that balance environmental, social, and economic goals through a collaborative process.
Dr. Gerwing teaches courses in Environmental Management and Forest Ecosystems. He also helped develop an Interdisciplinary Freshman Inquiry course in Sustainability where he draws on ecology, sociology, and the arts to help students contextualize social and environmental issues. He is currently collaborating with colleagues at PSU to develop and refine students learning outcomes for sustainability courses across PSU's four-year general education program.