Sunny is interested in improving our understanding of the global carbon cycle by investigating the interactions and feedbacks of tropical forests and climate. For her dissertation research, she investigated the productivity, physiology, community dynamics, and ecological impacts of a grassland agro-ecosystem combining field studies and ecosystem modeling. Her current research focuses on the investigation of community dynamics and ecological cycles in tropical forests. Tropical forest carbon cycle feedbacks have been identified as one of the largest sources of uncertainty in global carbon cycle modeling, but they are inadequately represented in modeling efforts. Sunny will quantify the responses of tropical forests to climate variability including drought, warming and hurricane disturbance, leading to significant improvement in the representation of tropical ecosystems in terrestrial carbon models.