Bio

Bio


Terry L. Root primarily works on how wild animals and plants are changing with climate change, with a current focus on the possible mass extinction of species with warming. She actively works at making scientific information accessible to decision makers and the public. For example, she was a Lead Author for the Third (2001) and Fourth (2007) Assessment Reports of the Intergovernmental Panel for Climate Change and a Review Editor for the Fifth (2014) Assessment Report. In 2007 the IPCC was co-awarded the Nobel Peace Prize with Vice President Al Gore. In addition to other honors, Root was awarded the Spirit of Defenders Award for Science by the Defenders of Wildlife in 2010; in 1999 she was chosen as an Aldo Leopold Leadership Fellow; in 1992 as a Pew Scholar in Conservation and the Environment; and in 1990 as a Presidential Young Investigator Award from the National Science Foundation.

Academic Appointments


Honors & Awards


  • Review Editor, 5th Assessment Report, Working Group II, Intergovernmental Panel for Climate Change (2009-2014)
  • Spirit of Defenders Award for Science, Defenders of Wildlife (2010)
  • Fellow, California Academy of Science (2010 to Present)
  • Lead Author, Nobel Peace Prize Co-Awarded to the Intergovernmental Panel for Climate Change (2007)
  • Lead Author, 4th Assessment Report, Working Group II, Intergovernmental Panel for Climate Change (2003-2007)
  • Banksia International Award, Banksia Environmental Foundation. Co-Awardee with Stephen H. Schneider (2006)
  • Conservation Achievement Award, National Wildlife Federation. Co-Awardee with Stephen H. Schneider (2002)
  • Lead Author, 3rd Assessment Report, Working Group II, Intergovernmental Panel for Climate Change (1998-2001)
  • Aldo Leopold Leadership Awardee, Ecological Society of America (1999)
  • Elected Member, International Ornithological Committee (1999)
  • Outstanding Teaching Award, Students of the School of Natural Resources and Environment (1997/1998)
  • Fellow, American Ornithologists' Union (1995)
  • Elected Council Member, American Ornithologists' Union (1993)
  • Pew Scholar, Conservation and the Environment Program of the Pew Charitable Trust (1992)
  • Presidential Young Investigator Award, National Science Foundation (1990)
  • Elective Member, American Ornithologists' Union (1989)

Boards, Advisory Committees, Professional Organizations


  • Board Member, National Audubon Society (2011 - Present)
  • Science Advisory Committee Member, Climate Communication (2011 - Present)
  • Board Member, Defenders of Wildlife (2010 - Present)
  • Science Advisory Committee Member, Defenders of Wildlife (2010 - Present)
  • Science Advisory Board Member, Alliance for Climate Education (2009 - Present)
  • Board of Directors Member, Center for Conservation Biology (1994 - 2005)
  • Science Advisory Committee Member, Great Lakes Integrated Sciences and Assessments Center (2011 - Present)
  • Jury Member, The Heinz Awards (2006 - 2007)
  • Science Panel Member, International Boreal Conservation Campaign (2009 - Present)
  • Board on Atmospheric Science and Climate Member, National Academy of Sciences (2004 - 2004)
  • Climate Change Scenarios Committee Member, National Research Council (2009 - 2010)
  • Evaluate Indicators for Monitoring Aquatic and Terrestrial Environments Member, National Research Council (1997 - 1999)
  • Pierce's Disease in Vineyards of California Member, National Research Council (2003 - 2004)
  • Science Advisory Board Member, National Audubon Society (2010 - Present)
  • Science Advisory Board Member, The Nature Conservancy, Michigan Chapter (1991 - 2001)
  • Executive Board Member, Point Blue (PRBO) Conservation Science (2002 - 2012)
  • Science Advisory Board Member, Point Blue (PRBO) Conservation Science (2002 - Present)
  • Undergraduate Advisory Panel Member, Stanford University (2012 - Present)
  • Science Advisory Board Member, Tropical Ecology Assessment and Monitoring Network for Conservation International (2007 - Present)
  • Global Climate Change and Wildlife Technical Review Committee Member, The Wildlife Society (2002 - 2005)
  • Van Tyne Library Committee Chair, Wilson Ornithology Society (1999 - 2008)
  • Advisory Board Member, Wind Research Initiative (2008 - Present)
  • Science and Faculty Advisor, Endangered Species UPDATE (1989 - 2001)
  • Board of Editors Member, Ecological Applications (1992 - 1995)
  • Board of Editors Member, Ecology and Ecological Monographs (1997 - 1999)
  • Conservation Resolutions Committee Member, Cooper Ornithological Society (1995 - 2003)
  • Elected Council Member, American Ornithologists' Union (1993 - 1996)
  • Conservation Committee Member and Chair, American Ornithologists' Union (1988 - 1995)
  • Membership Committee Member, American Ornithologists' Union (1988 - 1990)

Professional Education


  • PhD, Princeton University, Biology (1987)
  • MA, University of Colorado, Boulder, Biology (1982)
  • BS, University of New Mexico, Mathematics and Statistics (1975)

Research & Scholarship

Current Research and Scholarly Interests


Impacts of climate change on wild plants and animals including extinction

Teaching

2013-14 Courses


Graduate and Fellowship Programs


  • Biology (School of Humanities and Sciences) (Phd Program)

Publications

Journal Articles


  • Movement distances enhance validity of predictive models ECOLOGICAL MODELLING Ko, C., Root, T. L., Lee, P. 2011; 222 (4): 947-954
  • Bridging the gap: linking climate-impacts research with adaptation planning and management CLIMATIC CHANGE Mastrandrea, M. D., Heller, N. E., Root, T. L., Schneider, S. H. 2010; 100 (1): 87-101
  • Sound the stressor: how Hoatzins (Opisthocomus hoazin) react to ecotourist conversation BIODIVERSITY AND CONSERVATION Karp, D. S., Root, T. L. 2009; 18 (14): 3733-3742
  • Attributing physical and biological impacts to anthropogenic climate change NATURE Rosenzweig, C., Karoly, D., Vicarelli, M., Neofotis, P., Wu, Q., Casassa, G., Menzel, A., Root, T. L., Estrella, N., Seguin, B., Tryjanowski, P., Liu, C., Rawlins, S., Imeson, A. 2008; 453 (7193): 353-U20

    Abstract

    Significant changes in physical and biological systems are occurring on all continents and in most oceans, with a concentration of available data in Europe and North America. Most of these changes are in the direction expected with warming temperature. Here we show that these changes in natural systems since at least 1970 are occurring in regions of observed temperature increases, and that these temperature increases at continental scales cannot be explained by natural climate variations alone. Given the conclusions from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) Fourth Assessment Report that most of the observed increase in global average temperatures since the mid-twentieth century is very likely to be due to the observed increase in anthropogenic greenhouse gas concentrations, and furthermore that it is likely that there has been significant anthropogenic warming over the past 50 years averaged over each continent except Antarctica, we conclude that anthropogenic climate change is having a significant impact on physical and biological systems globally and in some continents.

    View details for DOI 10.1038/nature06937

    View details for Web of Science ID 000255868400043

    View details for PubMedID 18480817

  • Changes in spring arrival of Nearctic-Neotropical migrants attributed to multiscalar climate GLOBAL CHANGE BIOLOGY MacMynowski, D. P., Root, T. L., Ballard, G., Geupel, G. R. 2007; 13 (11): 2239-2251
  • Climate and the complexity of migratory phenology: sexes, migratory distance, and arrival distributions INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF BIOMETEOROLOGY MacMynowski, D. P., Root, T. L. 2007; 51 (5): 361-373

    Abstract

    The intra- and inter-season complexity of bird migration has received limited attention in climatic change research. Our phenological analysis of 22 species collected in Chicago, USA, (1979-2002) evaluates the relationship between multi-scalar climate variables and differences (1) in arrival timing between sexes, (2) in arrival distributions among species, and (3) between spring and fall migration. The early migratory period for earliest arriving species (i.e., short-distance migrants) and earliest arriving individuals of a species (i.e., males) most frequently correlate with climate variables. Compared to long-distance migrant species, four times as many short-distance migrants correlate with spring temperature, while 8 of 11 (73%) of long-distance migrant species' arrival is correlated with the North Atlantic Oscillation (NAO). While migratory phenology has been correlated with NAO in Europe, we believe that this is the first documentation of a significant association in North America. Geographically proximate conditions apparently influence migratory timing for short-distance migrants while continental-scale climate (e.g., NAO) seemingly influences the phenology of Neotropical migrants. The preponderance of climate correlations is with the early migratory period, not the median of arrival, suggesting that early spring conditions constrain the onset or rate of migration for some species. The seasonal arrival distribution provides considerable information about migratory passage beyond what is apparent from statistical analyses of phenology. A relationship between climate and fall phenology is not detected at this location. Analysis of the within-season complexity of migration, including multiple metrics of arrival, is essential to detect species' responses to changing climate as well as evaluate the underlying biological mechanisms.

    View details for DOI 10.1007/s00484-006-0084-1

    View details for Web of Science ID 000246098300002

    View details for PubMedID 17245563

  • Conservation and climate change: The challenges ahead CONSERVATION BIOLOGY Root, T. L., Schneider, S. H. 2006; 20 (3): 706-708
  • Human-modified temperatures induce species changes: Joint attribution PROCEEDINGS OF THE NATIONAL ACADEMY OF SCIENCES OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA Root, T. L., MacMynowski, D. P., Mastrandrea, M. D., Schneider, S. H. 2005; 102 (21): 7465-7469

    Abstract

    Average global surface-air temperature is increasing. Contention exists over relative contributions by natural and anthropogenic forcings. Ecological studies attribute plant and animal changes to observed warming. Until now, temperature-species connections have not been statistically attributed directly to anthropogenic climatic change. Using modeled climatic variables and observed species data, which are independent of thermometer records and paleoclimatic proxies, we demonstrate statistically significant "joint attribution," a two-step linkage: human activities contribute significantly to temperature changes and human-changed temperatures are associated with discernible changes in plant and animal traits. Additionally, our analyses provide independent testing of grid-box-scale temperature projections from a general circulation model (HadCM3).

    View details for DOI 10.1073/pnas.0502286102

    View details for Web of Science ID 000229417500014

    View details for PubMedID 15899975

  • Fingerprints of global warming on wild animals and plants NATURE Root, T. L., Price, J. T., Hall, K. R., Schneider, S. H., Rosenzweig, C., Pounds, J. A. 2003; 421 (6918): 57-60

    Abstract

    Over the past 100 years, the global average temperature has increased by approximately 0.6 degrees C and is projected to continue to rise at a rapid rate. Although species have responded to climatic changes throughout their evolutionary history, a primary concern for wild species and their ecosystems is this rapid rate of change. We gathered information on species and global warming from 143 studies for our meta-analyses. These analyses reveal a consistent temperature-related shift, or 'fingerprint', in species ranging from molluscs to mammals and from grasses to trees. Indeed, more than 80% of the species that show changes are shifting in the direction expected on the basis of known physiological constraints of species. Consequently, the balance of evidence from these studies strongly suggests that a significant impact of global warming is already discernible in animal and plant populations. The synergism of rapid temperature rise and other stresses, in particular habitat destruction, could easily disrupt the connectedness among species and lead to a reformulation of species communities, reflecting differential changes in species, and to numerous extirpations and possibly extinctions.

    View details for DOI 10.1038/nature01333

    View details for Web of Science ID 000180165500035

    View details for PubMedID 12511952

Stanford Medicine Resources: