Janet Franklin


(480) 965-9884
Coor 5600


1988 - Ph.D. (Geography) University of California, Santa Barbara
1983 - M.A. (Geography) University of California, Santa Barbara
1979 - B.A. (Environmental Biology) University of California, Santa Barbara

Research Interests

Landscape ecology, terrestrial plant ecology, vegetation science, biogeography, conservation ecology, biophysical remote sensing of terrestrial ecosystems, geographic information science

Current Research Activities

Collaborative Research: Long-Term Dynamics and Resilience of Terrestrial Plant and Animal Communities in the Bahamas. PI: J. Franklin. In collaboration with University of Florida. National Science Foundation – Geography and Spatial Sciences

Collaborative Research: Do microenvironments govern macroecology? PI: Frank Davis, UC Santa Barbara, in collaboration with UC Riverside, UC Berkeley, UC Los Angeles, Arizona State University, Conservation Biology Institute, Desert Research Institute, Conservation International. National Science Foundation – Macrosystems Biology

IPG - Developing and Testing an Integrated Paleoscape Model for the early Middle and Late Pleistocene of the South Coast of South Africa. National Science Foundation – Archaeology. PI: Professor Curtis Marean, ASU.


Janet Franklin’s research is focused on in the dynamics of terrestrial (land) plant communities at the landscape scale. Her work addresses the impacts of human-caused landscape change on the environment.  Human land use -- agriculture and urbanization -- and other large-scale human impacts such as global warming, and the introduction of exotic species, often interact with natural disturbance regimes such as fire, flooding and hurricanes, to shape plant community dynamics (succession). How resilient are ecological communities to these impacts?  Terrestrial plant communities are important elements of regional biodiversity and provide essential habitat for more charismatic animal and rare plant species.

Janet and her students are currently working on: a) methods for predicting species distributions from environmental variables to study the impacts of climate change and land use change on biodiversity; b) exploring the impacts of anthropogenically-altered fire regimes and land use change on flora and fauna in Mediterranean-Type Ecosystems in southern California and elsewhere using spatially explicit landscape simulation models and long-term datasets; and, c) understanding the long term impacts of human and natural disturbance on tropical forest island ecosystems in the Pacific and Caribbean. They use many research tools including field surveys, statistical modelling, computer simulation, remote sensing, spatial analysis and geographic information systems.

Awards and Honors

2008 - Erasmus Mundus (European Union Education and Training), Visiting Scholar Program, GEM : Geo-Information Science and Earth Observation for Environmental Modelling and Management Masters Course, International Institute for Geo-Information Science and Earth Observation (ITC), Enschede, The Netherlands

2005 - Women in Science, Distinguished Visitor Program, School of Biological, Environmental and Ecological Sciences (BEES), University of New South Wales, Sydney, Australia

2001 - Recognition of appreciation for outstanding service to the Association of American Geographers as Editor of The Professional Geographer

Selected Publications

Lippitt, C. C., Stow, D. A., O’Leary, J. F. and Franklin, J. 2013, Influence of short-interval fire occurrence on post-fire recovery of fire prone shrublands in California, USA. International Journal of Wildland Fire 22(2):184-193. http://dx.doi.org/10.1071/WF10099 

Peterson, S., Franklin, J., Roberts, D., van Wagtendonk, J., 2013, Mapping fire fuels in Yosemite National Park. Canadian Journal of Forest Research43(1):7-17 10.1139/cjfr-2012-0213. 

Conlisk, E.*, Syphard, A. D., Franklin, J., Flint, L., Flint, A., and Regan, H. M., 2013, Management implications of uncertainty in assessing impacts of multiple landscape-scale threats to species persistence using a linked modeling approach. Global Change Biology 3(3):858-869. DOI: 10.1111/gcb.12090

Potts, A. J., Hedderson, T. A., Franklin, J. and Cowling, R. M. 2013, The Last Glacial Maximum distribution of South African Subtropical Thicket,Journal of Biogeography 40(2):310-322. doi:10.1111/j.1365-2699.2012.02788.x

Franklin, J., Davis, F. W., Ikagami, M.*, Syphard, A. D., Flint, A., Flint, L. and Hannah, L. 2013, Modeling plant species distributions under future climates: how fine-scale do climate models need to be? Global Change Biology 19(2):473-483. DOI: 10.1111/gcb.12051

van der Maarel, E. and J. Franklin, editors. 2013. Vegetation Ecology, 2nd edition. Wiley.

Franklin, J., and E. V. Santos. 2011. A spatially explicit census reveals population structure and recruitment patterns for a narrowly endemic pine, Pinus torreyana.Plant Ecology, 212: 293-306.

Franklin, J.. 2009. Mapping Species Distributions. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

Franklin, J., D. W. Steadman. 2010. Forest Plant and Bird Communities in the Lau Group, Fiji. PLoS ONE, 5 (12): e15685.

Regan, H. M., J. B. Crookston, R. Swab, J. Franklin, and D. M. Lawson. 2010. Fragmentation and altered fire regime create trade-offs for an obligate seeding shrub. Ecology, 91:267-276.

Syphard, A. D., and J. Franklin. 2010. Species traits affect the performance of species distribution models for plants in southern California. Journal of Vegetation Science, 21: 177-189.

Franklin, J. 2009. Vegetation dynamics and exotic plant invasion following high severity crown fire in a southern California conifer forest. Plant Ecology, 207(2): 281-295.

Franklin, J., K. Wejnert, S. Hathaway, C. Rochester, and R. Fisher. 2009. Effect of species rarity on the accuracy of species distribution models for reptiles and amphibians in southern California. Diversity and Distributions, 15: 167-177.

Keeley, J. E., H. Safford, C. J. Fotheringham, J. Franklin, and M. Moritz. 2009. The 2007 Southern California wildfires: Lessons in complexity. Journal of Forestry, 107:287-296.

Lewison, R. L., C. Soykan, and J. Franklin. 2009. Mapping the bycatch seascape: Multi-species and multi-scale spatial patterns of fisheries bycatch. Ecological Applications, 19(4): 920-930.

Syphard, A. D., and J. Franklin. 2009. Differences in spatial predictions among species distribution modeling methods vary with species traits and environmental predictors. Ecography, 32: 907-918.

Franklin, J. and D. W. Steadman. 2008. Prehistoric species richness of birds on oceanic islands. Oikos, 117(12): 1885-1891.

Franklin, J., G. Keppel, and W. A. Whistler. 2008. The flora and vegetation of Lakeba, Nayau and Aiwa Islands, Central Lau Group, Fiji. Micronesica, 40(1): 169-225.

Regan, H. M., L. A. Hierl, J. Franklin, D. H. Deutchman, H. Schmalbach, C. S. Winchell, and B. S. Johnson. 2008. Species prioritisation for monitoring and management in regional multiple species conservation plans. Diversity and Distributions, 14(3): 462-471.

Rogan, J., J. Franklin, D. Stow, J. Miller, D. A. Roberts, and C. Woodcock. 2008. Mapping land cover modifications over large areas: a comparison of machine learning techniques. Remote Sensing of Environment, 112(5): 2272-2283.

Fall, P.L., T. D. Drezner, and J. Franklin. 2007. Dispersal ecology of the lowland rainforest in the Vava'u Island Group, Kingdom of Tonga. New Zealand Journal of Botany, 45: 393-417.

Franklin, J.. 2007. Recovery from clearing, cyclone and fire in rain forest of Tonga, South Pacific: vegetation dynamics. Austral Ecology, 32(7): 789-797.

Franklin, J. and S. J. Rey. 2007. Spatial patterns of tropical forest trees in Western Polynesia suggest recruitment limitations during secondary succession. Jounal of Tropical Ecology, 23(1): 1-12.

Miller, J., J. Franklin, and R. Aspinall. 2007. Incorporating spatial dependence in predictive vegetation models. Ecological Modelling, 202(3): 225-242.

Franklin, J., L. Spears-Lebrun, D. Deutschman, and K. Marsden. 2006. Impact of a high-intensity fire on mixed evergreen and mixed conifer forests in the Peninsular Ranges of southern California, USA. Forest Ecology and Management, 235:18-29.

Franklin, J., S. Wiser, D. R. Drake, L. Burrows, and W. Sykes. 2006. Environment, disturbance history and rain forest composition across the islands of Tonga, Western Polynesia. Journal of Vegetation Science, 17(2): 233-244.

Miller, J., and J. Franklin. 2006. Explicitly incorporating spatial dependence in predictive vegetation models as explanatory variables: a Mojave Desert case study. Journal of Geographical Systems, 8(4): 411-435.

Franklin, J., A. D. Syphard, H. He, and D. Mladenoff. 2005. The effects of altered fire regimes on patterns of plant succession in the foothills and mountains of southern California. Ecosystems, 8(8): 885-898.

Outreach and Service

2011-present Subject Matter Editor, Board of Editors, Ecological Applications (IF 3.7)

2010-present Subject Matter Editor, Board of Editors, Ecography (IF 4.1)

2008-present Subject Matter Editor, Board of Editors, Diversity & Distributions (IF 4.2)

2006-2009 - Member, Board of Editors, Ecology and Ecological Monographs. (ESA)

2008 - Invited workshop co-organizer, The Utility of Species Distribution Models as Tools for Conservation Ecology, Riederalp, Switzerland, 11-16 Aug.

2005-2006 - Chair, Local Organizing Committee, 2006 US-IALE Annual Symposium, San Diego CA (28-31 Mar 2006)

1999-2006 - Associate Editor, Journal of Vegetation Science. (over 100 manuscript decisions)