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Dr. Steward T.A. Pickett

Plant Ecologist | PhD, University of Illinois, Urbana

urban ecology, landscape ecology, succession

845 677-7600 x130

Steward Pickett is an expert in the ecology of plants, landscapes, and urban ecosystems. Recipient of the Ecological Society of America's 2021 Eminent Ecologist Award, a member of the National Academy of Sciences, and the founding director of the Baltimore Ecosystem Study (1997-2016), Pickett also co-directed the Urban Sustainability Research Coordination Network. This project established lasting, interdisciplinary connections between urban designers, policymakers, and managers; the National Science Foundation deemed the project a model for research coordination networks.

Pickett’s research focuses on the ecological structure of urban areas and vegetation dynamics, with national and global applications. Among his research sites: vacant lots in urban Baltimore, primary forests in western Pennsylvania, post-agricultural fields in New Jersey, China’s rapidly urbanizing Yanqi Valley, and riparian woodlands and savannas in Kruger National Park, South Africa.

By applying ecological theory to urban planning, architecture, and landscape architecture, Pickett strives to convert cities and suburbs from ecological liabilities into ecological assets. He forges partnerships between ecologists and people who design and manage cities to protect and promote ecosystem services in urban environments.

Patterns in ecologically-important factors like water retention, vegetation growth, and wildlife habitat availability change when humans develop natural areas. Using satellite data, Pickett studies urban landscape composition as it evolves and links this information to social and demographic influences.

Zhou, Weiqi, Wenjuan Yu, Yuguo Qian, Lijian Han, Steward T. A. Pickett, Jing Wang, Weifeng Li, and Zhiyun Ouyang. 2021. “Beyond City Expansion: Multi-Scale Environmental Impacts Of Urban Megaregion Formation In China”. National Science Review. Oxford University Press (OUP). doi:10.1093/nsr/nwab107.
Zhou, Weiqi, Steward T. A. Pickett, and Timon McPhearson. 2021. “Conceptual Frameworks Facilitate Integration For Transdisciplinary Urban Science”. Npj Urban Sustainability 1 (1). Springer Science and Business Media LLC. doi:10.1038/s42949-020-00011-9.
Pickett, Steward T. A., Morgan Grove, Shannon L. LaDeau, Emma J. Rosi, and Mary L. Cadenasso. 2020. “Urban Ecology As An Integrative Science And Practice.”. In Urban Ecology: Its Nature And Challenges, 122-143. CABI. doi:10.1079/9781789242607.0122.
Qian, Y. G., W. Q. Zhou, Steward T. A. Pickett, W. J. Yu, D. P. Xiong, W. M. Wang, and C. B. Jing. 2020. “Integrating Structure And Function: Mapping The Hierarchical Spatial Heterogeneity Of Urban Landscapes”. Ecological Processes 9 (1).
Pickett, Steward T. A., and J. M. Grove. 2020. “An Ecology Of Segregation”. Frontiers In Ecology And The Environment 18 (10): 535-535+.
Pickett, Steward T. A., M. L. Cadenasso, M. E. Baker, L. E. Band, C. G. Boone, G. L. Buckley, Peter M. Groffman, et al. 2020. “Theoretical Perspectives Of The Baltimore Ecosystem Study: Conceptual Evolution In A Social-Ecological Research Project”. Bioscience 70 (4): 297-314+.
Hu, X. F., Y. G. Qian, Steward T. A. Pickett, and W. Q. Zhou. 2020. “Urban Mapping Needs Up-To-Date Approaches To Provide Diverse Perspectives Of Current Urbanization: A Novel Attempt To Map Urban Areas With Nighttime Light Data”. Landscape And Urban Planning 195.
Boone, C. G., Steward T. A. Pickett, G. Bammer, K. Bawa, J. A. Dunne, I. J. Gordon, D. Hart, et al. 2020. “Preparing Interdisciplinary Leadership For A Sustainable Future”. Sustainability Science 15 (6): 1723-1733+.
Marshall, Victoria, Mary L. Cadenasso, Brian McGrath, and Steward T. A. Pickett. 2020. Patch Atlas: Integrating Design Practices And Ecological Knowledge For Cities As Complex Systems. Yale University Press.
Grove, Morgan, and Steward T. A. Pickett. 2019. “From Transdisciplinary Projects To Platforms: Expanding Capacity And Impact Of Land Systems Knowledge And Decision Making”. Current Opinion In Environmental Sustainability 38. Elsevier BV: 7-13. doi:10.1016/j.cosust.2019.04.001.
Ogden, Laura A., Carissa Aoki, Morgan Grove, Nancy Falxa Sonti, William Hall, Dexter Locke, Steward T. A. Pickett, Miriam Avins, Katie Lautar, and John Lagrosa. 2019. “Forest Ethnography: An Approach To Study The Environmental History And Political Ecology Of Urban Forests”. Urban Ecosystems 22 (1): 49 - 63. doi:10.1007/s11252-018-0744-z.
Rademacher, Anne, Mary L. Cadenasso, and Steward T. A. Pickett. 2019. “From Feedbacks To Coproduction: Toward An Integrated Conceptual Framework For Urban Ecosystems”. Urban Ecosystems 22 (1): 65 - 76. doi:10.1007/s11252-018-0751-0.
Wang, Jiali, Weiqi Zhou, Steward T. A. Pickett, Wenjuan Yu, and Weifeng Li. 2019. “A Multiscale Analysis Of Urbanization Effects On Ecosystem Services Supply In An Urban Megaregion”. Science Of The Total Environment 662: 824 - 833. doi:10.1016/j.scitotenv.2019.01.260.
Zhu, Zhe, Yuyu Zhou, K. Seto, Eleanor C. Stokes, Chengbin Deng, Steward T. A. Pickett, and Hannes Taubenbock. 2019. “Understanding An Urbanizing Planet: Strategic Directions For Remote Sensing”. Remote Sensing Of Environment 228: 164 - 182. doi:10.1016/j.rse.2019.04.020.
Han, Lijian, Weiqi Zhou, Steward T. A. Pickett, Weifeng Li, and Yuguo Qian. 2019. “Risks And Causes Of Population Exposure To Cumulative Fine Particulate (Pm2.5) Pollution In China”. Earth's Future 7 (6). American Geophysical Union (AGU): 615-622. doi:10.1029/2019ef001182.
Pickett, Steward T. A., Mary L. Cadenasso, Morgan Grove, E. Irwin, Emma J. Rosi, and C.M. Swan. 2019. Science For A Sustainable City. Yale University Press.
Wentz, Elizabeth A., Abigail M. York, Marina Alberti, Lindsey Conrow, Heather Fischer, Luis Inostroza, Claire Jantz, Steward T. A. Pickett, K. Seto, and H. Taubenbock. 2018. “Six Fundamental Aspects For Conceptualizing Multidimensional Urban Form: A Spatial Mapping Perspective”. Landscape And Urban Planning 179: 55 - 62. doi:10.1016/j.landurbplan.2018.07.007.
Li, Weifeng, Weiqi Zhou, Yang Bai, Steward T. A. Pickett, and Lijian Han. 2018. “The Smart Growth Of Chinese Cities: Opportunities Offered By Vacant Land”. Land Degradation & Development 29 (10): 3512 - 3520. doi:10.1002/ldr.3125.
Han, Lijian, Weiqi Zhou, Steward T. A. Pickett, Weifeng Li, and Yuguo Qian. 2018. “Multicontaminant Air Pollution In Chinese Cities”. Bulletin Of The World Health Organization 96 (4): 233 - 242E. doi:10.2471/BLT.17.195560.
Zhou, Weiqi, Jing Wang, Yuguo Qian, Steward T. A. Pickett, Weifeng Li, and Lijian Han. 2018. “The Rapid But “Invisible” Changes In Urban Greenspace: A Comparative Study Of Nine Chinese Cities”. Science Of The Total Environment 627: 1572 - 1584. doi:10.1016/j.scitotenv.2018.01.335.

Current Projects