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Janet Franklin

Janet Franklin
Distinguished Sustainability Fellow, Julie Ann Wrigley Global Institute of Sustainability
Distinguished Professor of Biogeography, Department of Botany and Plant Sciences, University of California-Riverside
Adjunct Professor, School of Geographical Sciences and Urban Planning, College of Liberal Arts and Sciences

Department of Botany and Plant Sciences
University of California-Riverside
900 University Ave
Riverside, CA 92521

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.

In 2014 Dr. Franklin was elected to the National Academy of Sciences. She has published more than 120 refereed papers in a wide variety of scholarly journals. Her research has been supported by the National Science Foundation, NASA and the National Geographic Society. She has also worked closely with the U.S. Forest Service and U.S. Geological Survey.

PhD, Geography, University of California, Santa Barbara, 1988

MA, Geography, University of California, Santa Barbara, 1983

BA, Environmental Biology, University of California, Santa Barbara, 1979

Journal Articles


Andrade, R., H. L. Bateman, J. Franklin and D. Allen. 2018. Waterbird community composition, abundance, and diversity along an urban gradient. Landscape and Urban Planning 170(Feb):103-111. DOI: 10.1016/j.landurbplan.2017.11.003. (link )


Ripplinger, J., S. L. Collins, A. M. York and J. Franklin. 2017. Boom-bust economics and vegetation dynamics in a desert city: How strong is the link?. Ecosphere 8(5):e01826. DOI: 10.1002/ecs2.1826. (link )


Dong, X., N. B. Grimm, K. Ogle and J. Franklin. 2016. Temporal variability of hydrology modifies the influence of geomorphology on vegetation distribution along a desert stream. Journal of Ecology 104(1):18-30. DOI: 10.1111/1365-2745.12450. (link )

DRYFLOR, , K. Banda-R, A. Delgado-Salanis, K. G. Dexter, R. Linares-Palomino, A. Oliveira-Filho, D. Prado, M. Pullan, C. Quintana, R. Riina, G. M. Rodriguez M., J. Weintritt, P. Acevedo-Rodriguez, G. Aymard, A. Castano, N. Ceballos-Mago, A. Cogollo, H. Cuadros, F. Delgado, W. Devia, H. Duenas, L. Fajardo, A. Fernandez, M. A. Fernandez, J. Franklin, E. H. Freid, L. A. Galetti, R. Gonto, R. Gonzalez-M., R. Graveson, E. H. Helmer, A. Idarraga, R. Lopez, H. Marcona-Vega, O. G. Martinez, H. M. Maturo, M. McDonald, K. McLaren, O. Melo, F. Mijares, V. Mogni, D. Molina, N. del Pilar Moreno, J. M. Nassar, D. M. Neves, L. J. Oakley, M. Oatham, A. R. Olvera-Luna, F. F. Pezzini, O. J. Reyes Dominguez, M. E. Rios, O. Rivera, N. Rodriguez, A. Rojas, T. Sarkinen, R. Sanchez, M. Smith, C. Vargas, B. Villanueva and R. T. Pennington. 2016. Plant diversity patterns in neotropical dry forests and their conservation implications. Science 353(6306):1383-1387. DOI: 10.1126/science.aaf5080 . (link )

Ripplinger, J., J. Franklin and S. L. Collins. 2016. When the economic engine stalls – a multi-scale comparison of vegetation dynamics in pre- and post-recession Phoenix, Arizona, USA. Landscape and Urban Planning 153(Sep):140-148. DOI: 10.1016/j.landurbplan.2016.05.009. (link )



Andrade, R., K. Larson and J. Franklin. 2017. Social-spatial analyses of attitudes towards the desert in Phoenix, Arizona. Poster presented at the 19th Annual Central-Arizona Phoenix Long-Term Ecological Research All Scientists Meeting and Poster Symposium, 13 January 2017, Skysong, Scottsdale, AZ. (link )


Ripplinger, J. and J. Franklin. 2012. CAP LTER plant species diversity responds to land use and landscape aesthetics. Poster presented at 13 January 2012 CAP LTER 14th Annual Poster Symposium and All Scientist Meeting, Global Institute of Sustainability, Arizona State University, Tempe, AZ. (link )


Ripplinger, J. and J. Franklin. 2011. Assessing spatiotemporal dynamics of plant communities in urban landscapes: Phoenix, Arizona, USA. Poster presented at the 3-7 April 2011 US-IALE Annual Symposium, Sustainability in Dynamic Landscapes, Portland, OR.

Ripplinger, J. and J. Franklin. 2011. Spatiotemporal patterns of dominantplant species in CAP LTER. Tempe, AZ. Poster presented at the 12-13 January 2011 CAP LTER 13th Annual Poster Symposium and All Scientist Meeting, Global Institute of Sustainability, Arizona State University. (link )



Ripplinger, J. and J. Franklin. 2015. Links between the Great Recession and urban plant diversity. Presentation at the US International Association for Landscape Ecology, 19-22 May 2015, Anchorage, Alaska. (link )

Ripplinger, J. and J. Franklin. 2015. The ecology of foreclosure: Zooming in on urban plant biodiversity and its drivers under an economic disturbance. Presentation at the International Association for Landscape Ecology (IALE) World Congress, 5-9 July 2015, Portland, Oregon. (link )


Ripplinger, J., J. Franklin and S. L. Collins. 2014. When the economic engine stalls: An examination of plant communities in post-recession urban landscapes. Presentation at the From Oceans to Mountains, 99th Ecological Society of America Annual Meeting, 10-15 August 2014, Sacramento, California. (link )


Ripplinger, J. and J. Franklin. 2013. Modeling human-vegetation feedbacks across scales in arid urban landscapes. Presentation at the 14-18 April 2013 Landscape Dynamics Along Environmental Gradients, American Society of Landscape Architects Annual Meeting and Expo, Austin, TX.


Ripplinger, J. and J. Franklin. 2012. Plant species diversity in arid urban landscapes responds to land use at multiple scales. Presented at 8-12 April 2012 US-IALE 2012 Annual Symposium, Newport, RI.