Skip to Content
Steward Pickett

Steward Pickett

Distinguished Senior Scientist, Plant Ecology, Cary Institute of Ecosystem Studies

Cary Institute of Ecosystem Services
Baltimore, MD

Titles

  • Distinguished Senior Scientist, Plant Ecology, Cary Institute of Ecosystem Studies

Biography

Steward Pickett’s research focuses on spatial heterogeneity and temporal dynamics in ecological systems. He has investigated succession and natural disturbance in plant communities, experimentally examined the function of forest-field edges, and discovered structure-nutrient relationships in riparian landscapes in Kruger National Park, South Africa. Currently, his focus is on urban regions as socio-ecological systems.

Pickett was the founding director of the Baltimore Ecosystem Study urban Long-Term Ecological Research program and co-director of the Urban Sustainability Research Coordination Network. He has contributed seven books and more than 200 scientific papers, and is coauthoring a new book on the linked social and ecological patchiness in urban ecosystems, and the role of resilience as a link between ecology and urban design. He is a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science and the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. He has been awarded the Conservation Innovator Award by Columbia University, and the Centennial Award by the Botanical Society of America. He has been active in the Ecological Society of America, serving as President from 2011-2012. In addition, he is a member of the Council of the International Association for Vegetation Science, the Science Advisory Board of the National Center for Ecological Synthesis and Analysis, the Biology Advisory Committee of the National Science Foundation, the National Design Committee for the National Ecological Observatory Network. He was a board member of Defenders of Wildlife from 1996-2005, a member of the National Research Council’s Board on Environmental Sciences and Toxicology, and was elected to two terms as Board Member-at-Large of the American Institute of Biological Sciences. Editorial service includes membership on the boards of the Journal of Vegetation Science, Ecosphere, and of Community Ecology, and membership on the advisory committee for Urban Ecosystems and Journal of Urban Ecology.

Journal Articles

2018

McHale, M. R., S. M. Beck, S. T. Pickett, D. L. Childers, M. L. Cadenasso, L. Rivers III, L. Swemmer, L. Ebersohn, W. Twine and D. N. Bunn. 2018. Democratization of ecosystem services—a radical approach for assessing nature’s benefits in the face of urbanization. Ecosystem Health and Sustainability 4(5):114-131. DOI: 10.1080/20964129.2018.1480905. (link )

2017

Grimm, N. B., S. T. Pickett, R. L. Hale and M. L. Cadenasso. 2017. Does the ecological concept of disturbance have utility in urban social-ecological-technological systems?. Ecosystem Health and Sustainability 3(1):e01255. DOI: 10.1002/ehs2.1255. DOI: 10.1002/ehs2.1255. (link )

Groffman, P. M., M. L. Cadenasso, J. Cavender-Bares, D. L. Childers, N. B. Grimm, J. M. Grove, S. E. Hobbie, L. R. Hutyra, G. D. Jenerette, P. T. McPhearson, D. E. Pataki, S. T. Pickett, R. V. Pouyat, E. Rosi-Marshall and B. L. Ruddell. 2017. Moving towards a new urban systems science. Ecosystems 20(1):38-43. DOI: 10.1007/s10021-016-0053-4. (link )

2016

McPhearson, P. T., S. T. Pickett, N. B. Grimm, J. Niemala, M. Alberti, T. Elmqvist, C. Weber, D. Haase, J. Breuste and S. Qureshi. 2016. Advancing urban ecology toward a science of cities. BioScience 66(3):198-212. DOI: 10.1093/biosci/biw002. (link )

Munoz-Erickson, T. A., L. Campbell, D. L. Childers, J. M. Grove, D. M. Iwaniec, S. T. Pickett, M. Romolini and E. Svendsen. 2016. Demystifying governance and its role for transitions in urban social-ecological systems. Ecosphere 7(11):e01564. DOI: 10.1002/ecs2.1564. (link )

Pickett, S. T., M. L. Cadenasso, D. L. Childers, M. J. McDowell and W. Zhou. 2016. Evolution and future of urban ecological science: Ecology in, of, and for the city. Ecosystem Health and Sustainability 2(7):e01229. DOI: 10.1002/ehs2.1229. (link )

2015

Childers, D. L., M. L. Cadenasso, J. M. Grove, V. Marshall, B. McGrath and S. T. Pickett. 2015. An ecology for cities: A transformational nexus of design and ecology to advance climate change resilience and urban sustainability. Sustainability 7(4):3774-3791. DOI: 10.3390/su7043774. (link )

McHale, M. R., S. T. Pickett, O. Barbosa, D. N. Bunn, M. L. Cadenasso, D. L. Childers, M. Gartin, G. R. Hess, D. M. Iwaniec, P. T. McPhearson, M. N. Peterson, A. K. Poole, L. Rivers III, S. T. Shutters and W. Zhou. 2015. The new global urban realm: Complex, connected, diffuse, and diverse social-ecological systems. Sustainability 7(5):5211-5240. DOI: 10.3390/su7055211. (link )

2014

Childers, D. L., S. T. Pickett, J. M. Grove, L. A. Ogden and A. C. Whitmer. 2014. Advancing urban sustainability theory and action: Challenges and opportunities. Landscape and Urban Planning 125(2014):320-328. DOI: 10.1016/j.landurbplan.2014.01.022. (link )

2013

Pickett, S. T., C. G. Boone, B. P. McGrath, M. L. Cadenasso, D. L. Childers, L. A. Ogden, M. R. McHale and J. M. Grove. 2013. Ecological science and transformation to the sustainable city. Cities 32(Supplement 1):510-520. DOI: 10.1016/j.cities.2013.02.008. (link )

2009

Carpenter, S. R., E. V. Armbrust, P. W. Arzberger, F. S. Chapin III, J. J. Elser, E. J. Hackett, P. M. Kareiva, M. A. Leibold, P. Lundberg, M. Mangel, N. Merchant, W. W. Murdoch, M. A. Palmer, D. P. Peters, S. T. Pickett, K. K. Smith, D. H. Wall and A. S. Zimmerman. 2009. Accelerate synthesis in ecology and environmental sciences. BioScience 59(8):699-701. (link )

2007

Clark, W. C., R. W. Kates, J. F. Richards, J. T. Mathews, W. B. Meyer, B. L. Turner II, S. T. Pickett, C. G. Boone and M. L. Cadenasso. 2007. Relationships of environmental justice to ecological theory. Bulletin for the Ecological Society of America 88:166-170. DOI: 10.1890/0012-9623(2007)88[166:ROEJTE]2.0.CO;2. (link )

2000

Grimm, N. B., J. M. Grove, C. L. Redman and S. T. Pickett. 2000. Integrated approaches to long-term studies of urban ecological systems. BioScience 50(7):571-584. DOI: 10.1641/0006-3568(2000)050[0571:IATLTO]2.0.CO;2. (link )

Zipperer, W. C., J. Wu, R. V. Pouyat and S. T. Pickett. 2000. The application of ecological principles to urban and urbanizing landscapes. Ecological Applications 10(3):685-688. DOI: 10.1890/1051-0761(2000)010[0685:TAOEPT]2.0.CO;2. (link )

1990

Kolasa, J. and S. T. Pickett. 1990. Ecological systems and the concept of biological organization. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (USA) 8837-8841.

McDonnell, M. J. and S. T. Pickett. 1990. The study of ecosystem structure and function along urban-rural gradients: an unexploited opportunity for ecology.. Ecology 1231-1237.

Book Chapters

2014

Boone, C. G., C. L. Redman, H. Blanco, D. Haase, J. Koch, S. Lwasa, H. Nagendra, S. Pauleit, S. T. Pickett, K. C. Seto and M. Yokohari. 2014. Reconceptualzing land for sustainable urbanity. Pp. 313-330 In: Seto, K. C. and A. Reenberg eds., Rethinking Global Land Use in an Urban Era. Vol 14. MIT Press. Cambridge, MA. ISBN: 9780262026901.

2013

Elmqvist, T., M. Fragkias, J. Goodness, B. Guneralp, P. J. Marcotullio, R. I. McDonald, S. Parnell, M. Schewenius, M. Sendstad, K. C. Seto, C. Wilkinson, M. Alberti, C. Folke, N. Frantzeskaki, D. Haase, M. V. Katti, H. Nagendra, J. Niemela, S. T. Pickett, C. L. Redman and K. Tidball. 2013. Stewardship of the biosphere in the urban era. Pp. 719-746 Urbanization, Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services: Challenges and Opportunities. Springer Netherlands.

Elmqvist, T., M. Fragkias, B. Guneralp, R. McDonald, P. J. Marcotullio, S. Parnell, K. C. Seto, M. Sendstad, C. Wilkinson, M. Alberti, C. Folke, J. Goodness, D. Haase, M. V. Katti, J. Niemela, H. Nagendra, M. Schewenius, K. Tidball, S. T. Pickett and C. L. Redman. 2013. Stewardship of the biosphere in the urban era. Pp. 719-746 In: Elmqvist, T., M. Fragkias, J. Goodness, B. Guneralp and P. J. Marcotullio eds., Urbanization, Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services: Challenges and Opportunities. Springer. ISBN: 978-94-007-7087-4.

Pickett, S. T., C. G. Boone and M. L. Cadenasso. 2013. Ecology and ecology and environmental justice: Understanding disturbance using ecological theory. Pp. 27-48 In: Boone, C. G. and M. Fragkias eds., Urbanization and Sustainability: Linking Urban Ecology, Environmental Justice and Global Environmental Change. Springer. Dordrecht, Heidelberg, New York, London. DOI: 10.1007/978-94-007-5666-3.

2011

Swan, C. M., S. T. Pickett, K. Szlavecz, P. S. Warren and K. T. Willey. 2011. Biodiversity and community composition in urban ecosystem studies: Coupled human, spatial, and metacommuunity processes. Pp. 179-186 In: Niemela, J., J. H. Breuste, T. Elmqvist, G. Gutenspergen, P. James and N. E. McIntyre eds., Urban Ecology: Patterns, Processes, and Applications. Oxford University Press.

2008

Grimm, N. B., J. M. Grove, S. T. Pickett and C. L. Redman. 2008. Integrated approaches to long-term studies of urban ecological areas. In: Marzluff, J. M., E. Shulenberger, W. Endlicher, M. Alberti, G. Bradley, C. Ryan, U. Simon and C. ZumBrunnen eds., Urban Ecology. Springer. Boston, MA.

1999

Pickett, S. T., J. Wu and M. L. Cadenasso. 1999. Patch dynamics and the ecology of disturbed ground. In: Walker, L. R. ed., Ecosystems of the World: Ecosystems of Disturbed Ground. Elsevier Science Publishers.

Presentations

2017

McHale, M. R., D. L. Childers, S. T. Pickett, M. L. Cadenasso, S. Beck, D. N. Bunn, L. Ebersohn, W. Twine and L. Swemmer. 2017. Human diversity and urbanization in South Africa: Democratizing ecosystem service assessments for sustainable development. Presentation at the Annual Meeting Portland ESA 2017, August 6-11, 2017, Portland, OR. (link )

2015

Grimm, N. B., S. T. Pickett, R. L. Hale and M. L. Cadenasso. 2015. Disturbance in urban ecosystems: New insights from comparisons of Baltimore, Phoenix, and selected world cities. Presentation at the Ecological Science at the Frontier: Celebrating the ESA Centennial 1915-2015, 9-14 August 2015, Baltimore, Maryland. (link )

Pickett, S. T., D. L. Childers, M. L. Cadenasso, M. J. McDonnell and W. Zhou. 2015. The evolution and future of urban ecological science. Presentation at the Ecological Science at the Frontier: Celebrating the ESA Centennial 1915-2015, 9-14 August 2015, Baltimore, Maryland. (link )

2014

Childers, D. L., S. T. Pickett and M. J. Davidson. 2014. Moving from the ecology of cities to ecology for cities: Integrating urban ecology, design, and decision-making for urban sustainability. Presentation at the From Oceans to Mountains, 99th Ecological Society of America Annual Meeting, 10-15 August 2014, Sacramento, California. (link )

2009

Grove, M., N. B. Grimm, P. M. Groffman, L. Band, S. Gregory, S. T. Pickett, D. L. Childers and M. Pons. 2009. Metrology for aquatic urban systems: Comparisons of the French and US approach. Estes Park, CO. Working group organizer report presented at 14-16 September 2009 LTER All Scientist Meeting, Integrating Science and Society in a World of Constant Change.

2000

Wu, J. and S. T. Pickett. 2000. New paradigms in urban ecology. Paper presented at 6-10 August 2000, Ecological Society of America 85th Annual Meeting, Snowbird, UT.

1998

Grove, J. M., C. L. Redman, S. T. Pickett and N. B. Grimm. 1998. An hierarchical, patch dynamics approach to the long term study of urban ecological systems. Presented at May 1998, Seventh International Syposium on Society and Resource Management: Culture, Environment and Society, Colombia, MO.