Dr. Jane Southworth – Department Chair



Dr. Jane Southworth

Department Chair and Professor


(352) 294-7512

curriculum vitae

Affiliate Member, Florida Climate Institute

Focus Areas

Areas of Specialization

  • Land Change Science
  • Climate Variability & Climate Change
  • Savanna Systems
  • Coupled Human-Natural Systems Analysis
  • Remote Sensing
  • Environmental ModelingEducational Background

Educational Background

  • PhD in Public and Environmental Affairs, Indiana University, 2000
  • M.S. in Geography, Specialization in Meteorology & Climatology, 1996
  • B.S. in Geography, Leicester University, 1992

Recent Courses

  • GRAD: Climate Variability & Climate Change in Africa (Spring 2015)
  • UNDERGRAD: Physical Geography (Spring 2015)
  • GRAD: Environmental Remote Sensing (Fall 2015)
  • UNDERGRAD: Digital Image Processing (Fall 2015)
  • GRAD: Seminar on Current Climate Change
  • GRAD: Seminar on Land Change Science
  • GRAD: Advanced Environmental Remote Sensing
  • UNDERGRAD: Extreme Weather
  • UNDERGRAD: The Good Life

Current Graduate Students



Postdoctoral Researchers

Recent Graduate Students


  • Forrest Stevens – Graduating Fall 2014
  • Mehmet Ozdes – started PhD Fall 2012
  • Erin Bunting Summer 2014
  • Tim Fullman Summer 2014 Co-Chair, Dr. Brian Child
  • Jessica Steele Summer 2014
  • Likai Zhu Summer 2014
  • Jing Sun Summer 2013
  • Muhammad Almatar Fall 2012
  • HuiPing Tsai Fall 2012
  • Cerian Gibbes Spring 2011
  • Sanchayeeta Adhikari Spring 2011
  • Pinki Mondal Fall 2010
  • Claudia Stickler December 2009
  • Jaclyn Hall Summer 2009
  • Amy Daniels Summer 2009
  • Matt Marsik Fall 2008 Co-Chair, Dr. Peter Waylen
  • Joel Hartter Fall 2007 Co-Chair, Dr. Abe Goldman


  • Mariano Gonzalez Fall 2009
  • Forrest Stevens Spring 2009
    Muhammad Almatar Spring 2008
  • Cerian Gibbes Fall 2006
  • Rob Lopez Spring 2006


  • Lin Cassidy: Research scholar at the Okavango Research Institute, University of Botswana and independent consultant. Post-doc (25% time) on NASA Project 2009-2013
  • Xia Cui: Visiting Scholar to my lab, from Lanzhou University, China. Major: Cartography and Geographic Information System. Graduation Date: Summer, 2011.
  • Xanic Rondon: Visiting Scholar, Department of Geography, University of Florida, Gainesville, FL (Feb-Oct 2010), and Postdoctoral Fellow, Percy Fitz Patrick Institute, University of Cape Town, South Africa. Advisors: G. Cumming, S. Perz, and J. Southworth. Project: NSF grant: Infrastructure change, human agency, and resilience in social-ecological systems.

In My Own Words

My research interests are based on the study of human-environment interactions within the field of Land Change Science. All of my research is undertaken with highly interdisciplinary research teams, which involve both social and physical scientists. It is this interdisciplinary focus on research problems that interests me and for which I was trained. Within such interdisciplinary teams my particular strengths lie in the remote sensing of vegetation dynamics; time-series analysis, land use, land cover change and land change modeling; the implications of scale and scaling in remote sensing and modeling analyses; people and parks; and modeling of the impacts of climate variability and change on human-environment systems and vegetation dynamics. I have recently focused in savanna systems within Southern Africa (South Africa, Zambia, Botswana, Namibia, Zimbabwe, Angola), but also work/have worked recently in Brazil, Bolivia, Peru, Costa Rica, Thailand, Cambodia, Uganda, Tanzania, Puerto Rico, Honduras, Yucatan and Trinidad.

Center and Affiliations on Campus

I am affiliated with the following research institutses and centers across the campus here at UF:

Recent Awards

  • University of Florida Climate Institute Faculty Fellow for 2014-2017.
  • 2011 Association of American Geographers E. Willard and Ruby S. Miller Award. This annual award recognizes members of the Association who have made truly outstanding contributions to the geographic field due to their special competence in teaching and research. (http://www.aag.org/cs/awards/miller)
  • Awarded a University of Florida Research Foundation Professorship 2007-2010
  • Received a CLAS Faculty Teaching Award for 2004-05


Recent Publications [last 5 years]       

Herrero, H.V., Southworth, J., Bunting, E., and B. Child. 2017. Using Repeat Photography to Observe Vegetation Change Over Time in Gorongosa National Park. African Studies Quarterly, 17(2). 65-82.

Sancahayeeta Adhikari, Jane Southworth and Harini Nagendra. 2014. Understanding forest loss and recovery: a spatio-temporal analysis of land change in and around Bannerghatta National Park, India. Journal of Land Use Science, DOI: 10.1080/1747423X.2014.920425

Baraloto, C., P. Alverga, S. Baéz Quispe, G. Barnes, N. Bejar Chura, I. Brasil da Silva, W. Castro, H. Da Souza, I. De Souza Moll, J. Del Alcazar Chilo, H. Duenas Linares, J. Garate Quispe, D. Kenji, H. Medeiros, C. A. Rockwell, A. Shenkin, M. Silveira, J. Southworth, G. Vasquez, and S. Perz. 2014. Trade-offs among forest value components in community forests of southwestern Amazonia. Ecology and Society XX(YY): ZZ. [online] URL: http://www.ecologyandsociety.org/volXX/issYY/artZZ/Research

Waylen, P.R., Southworth, J., Gibbes C. and H. Tsai. 2014. Time series analysis of land cover change: Developing statistical tools to determine significance of land cover changes in persistence analyses. Remote Sensing, 6, 4473-4497.

Sun, J., Z. Huang, Q. Zhen, J. Southworth and S. Perz. 2014. Fractally deforested landscape: Pattern and process in a tri-national Amazon frontier. Applied Geography, 52: 204-211.

Gibbes, C., Southworth, J., Waylen, P. and B. Child. 2014. Climate variability as a dominant driver of post-disturbance savanna degradation or recovery. Applied Geography, 53: 389-401.

Tsai, H., Southworth, J. and P. Waylen. 2014. Spatial persistence and temporal patterns in vegetation cover across Florida, 1982-2006. Physical Geography, 35(2): 151-180.

Sun, J., J. Southworth. And Y. Qiu. 2014. Mapping multiscale impacts of deforestation in the Amazonian rainforest from 1986 to 2010, Journal of Land Use Science. DOI: 10.1080/1747423X.2013.858785

Miguel A. Campo-Bescos , Rafael Muñoz-Carpena, Jane Southworth, Likai Zhu, Peter R. Waylen and Erin Bunting. 2013. Combined spatial and temporal effects of environmental controls on monthly NDVI in southern Africa savannas. Remote Sensing, 5, 6513-6538.

Southworth, J., Rigg, L., Gibbes C., Waylen, P., Zhu, L., McCarragher, S., Cassidy, L. 2013. Integrating dendrochronology, climate and satellite remote sensing to better understand savanna landscape dynamics in the Okavango Delta, Botswana. LAND, 2: 637-655.

Campo-Bescos, M.A., R. Munoz-Carpena, D.A. Kaplan, J. Southworth, L. Zhu and P.R. Waylen. 2013. Beyond precipitation: physiographic thresholds dictate the relative importance of environmental drivers on savanna vegetation. PLoS ONE, 8(8): e72348. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0072348

J. Sun, J. Southworth. 2013. Retrospective analysis of landscape dynamics using normalized spectral entropy. Remote Sensing Letters, Vol. 4, No. 11, 1049–1056, http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/2150704X.2013.836286 .

Likai Zhu and Jane Southworth. 2013. Disentangling the relationships between net primary production and precipitation in southern Africa savannas using satellite observations from 1982 to 2010. Remote Sensing, 5, 3803-3825; doi:10.3390/rs5083803

J. Sun, J. Southworth. 2013. Indicating landscape connectivity in Amazonian Rainforests from 1986 to 2010 using morphological image processing analysis, International Journal of Remote Sensing, 34(14): 5187-5200.

Cassidy, L., J. Southworth, C. Gibbes, & M.W. Binford. 2013. Beyond classifications: Combining continuous and discrete approaches to better understand land-cover change within the lower Mekong River region. Applied Geography, 39: 26-45.

Erin Bunting, Jessica Steele, Eric Keys, Shylock Muyengwa, Brian Child, Jane Southworth. 2013. Local Perception of Risk to Livelihoods in the Semi-Arid Landscape of Southern Africa. LAND 2(2): 225-251.

Xia Cui, Cerian Gibbes, Jane Southworth, Peter Waylen. 2013. Using Remote Sensing to Quantify Vegetation Change and Ecological Resilience in a Semi-arid System. LAND, 2(2): 108-130.

Sun, J., Z. Huang, J. Southworth. Y. Qiu. 2013. Mapping fractality during the process of deforestation in an Amazon tri-national frontier, Remote Sensing Letters, 4:6, 589 -598. DOI:10.1080/2150704X.2013.771827.

Perz, S., Y. Qiu, Y. Xia, J. Southworth, J. Sun, M. Marsik, K. Rocha, V. Passos, D. Rojas, G. Alarcon, G. Barnes, C. Baraloto. 2013. Trans-boundary Infrastructure and Land Cover Change: Highway Paving and Community-level Deforestation in a Tri-national Frontier in the Amazon Land Use Policy, Land Use Policy, 34, 27 – 41.

Sun, J., & J. Southworth. 2013. Remote sensing-based fractal analysis and scale dependence associated with forest fragmentation in an Amazon tri-national frontier. Remote Sensing, 5(2): 454-472.

Southworth, J., H. Nagendra, & L. Cassidy. 2012. Evaluating forest transition pathways in Asia : Case studies from Nepal, India, Thailand and Cambodia. Land Use Science, 7 (1): 51-65.

Adhikari, S., & J. Southworth. 2012. Simulating forest cover changes of Bannerghatta National Park on a CA-Markov model. Remote Sensing, 4(1): 3215-3243.

Gonzalez-Roglich, M., Southworth J., & Branch L.C. 2012. The role of private lands for conservation: Land cover change analysis in the Calgenal savanna ecosystem, Argnetina. Applied Geography, 34: 281-288.

Hartter, J., S.J. Ryan, J. Southworth, & C. Chapman. 2012. Landscapes as continuous entities: forest disturbance and recovery in the Albertine Rift landscape. Landscape Ecology, 26(6) 877-890

Cumming, G.S., J. Southworth, X.J. Rondon, & M. Marsik. 2012. Spatial complexity in fragmenting Amazonian rainforests: Do feedbacks from edge effects push forests towards an ecological threshold? Ecological Complexity, 11: 67-74

Gaughan, A., F. Stevens, C. Gibbes, J. Southworth & M. Binford. 2012. Linking vegetation response to seasonal precipitation in the Okavango-Kwando-Zambezi catchment of southern Africa. International Journal of Remote Sensing, 33:21, 6783-6804

Rhondon, X.J., G.S. Cumming, R.E. Cossio & J. Southworth. 2012. The effects of selective logging behaviors on forest fragmentation and recovery. International Journal of Forestry Research, Volume 2012, Article ID 170974, 10 pages doi:10.1155/2012/170974

Marsik, M.*, Stevens, F.*, and Southworth J. 2011. Patterns and Rates of Deforestation in Pando, Bolivia from 1986 to 2005. Progress in Physical Geography, 35(3): 353-374

Wyman, M. S., Stein, T. V., Southworth, J., & Horwich, R. H. 2011. Does Population Increase Equate to Conservation Success? Forest Fragmentation and Conservation of the Black Howler Monkey. Conservation & Society, 9(3).

Southworth J., Marsik, M.,* Qui, Y., Perz, S., Stevens, F.*, Rocha, K*., Cumming G., Barnes, G., 2011. Roads as drivers of change: MAP region land cover change trajectories from 1986 to 2005: dominant trends and comparisons across the tri-national frontier. Remote Sensing, 3(5): 1047-1066

Southworth J. and C. Gibbes*. 2010. Remote Sensing within the field of Land Change Science: Past, present and future directions. Geography Compass. 4 (12): 1695-1712.

L. Cassidy*, M. Binford, J. Southworth and G. Barnes. 2010. Social and ecological factors and land-use land-cover diversity in two provinces in south-east Asia. Land Use Science, Vol 5(4): 277-306.

Hartter, J.*, Goldman, A.C., and J. Southworth. 2010. Responses by Households to Resource Scarcity and Crop Raiding in Communities Near a Forest Park. Journal for Nature Conservation. 19 (2): 79-86.

P. Mondal* and J. Southworth. 2010. Evaluation of conservation interventions using cellular automata-Markov model. Forest Ecology and Management. 260: 1716-1725.

Southworth, J., Hartter, J.*, Binford, M.W., Goldman, A.C., Chapman, C.A., Chapman, L.J., Omeja, P.*, and E. Binford*. 2010. Landscape effects of an East African national park on the protected tropical forest and its surrounding area. Tropical Conservation Science 3(2): 122-142.

Gibbes. C*, Adhikari. S*., Rostant. L*, Southworth. J. 2010. Application of Object Based Classification and High Resolution Satellite Imagery for Savanna Ecosystem Analysis. Remote Sensing. 2 (12): 2748-2772.

Duccio Rocchini; Niko Balkenhol; Gregory A Carter; Giles M Foody; Thomas W Gillespie; Kate S He; Salit Kark; Noam Levin; Kelly Lucas; Miska Luoto; Harini Nagendra; Jens Oldeland; Carlo Ricotta; Jane Southworth; Markus Neteler. 2010. Remotely sensed spectral heterogeneity as a proxy of species diversity: recent advances and open challenges. Ecological Informatics. 5, 318-329.

Nikhil Lele, Harini Nagendra and Jane Southworth. 2010. Accessibility, Demography and Protection: Drivers of Forest Stability and Change at Multiple Scales in the Cauvery Basin, India Remote Sens. 2010, 2, 306-332

Recent Research Funding


  • UF Informatics Institute SEED Grant. “Death, Disease and Distribution”, $36,000. PI – Southworth, Co-PIs: Blackburn, Waylen, Glass, Ryan, Munoz-Carpena, and Kiker. August 2014-July 30th 2015.
  • NSF-RCN Tropical Reforestation Network. PI- Robin Chazdon. $500,000 2014-2019.
  • NSF-CNH Program. Global Sensitivity & Uncertainty Analysis in the Evaluation of Social Ecological Resilience: Theoretical Debates over Infrastructure Impacts on Livelihoods & Forest Change. $1.6 million. PI: Dr. Stephen Perz. My role: Senior Investigator.


  • NASA – LCLUC Program. Southworth, J. (PI), G. Kiker, Y. Qiu, R. Munoz-Carpena, P.R. Waylen, M.W. Binford, E. Keys, B. Child (all Co-I’s). Understanding and predicting the impact of climate variability and climate change on land use and land cover change via socio-economic institutions in Southern Africa. $871,000.
  • NSF IGERT Competition. Title: Spatial Ecology and Evolution: Quantitative Training in Biology, Statistics, and Mathematics. 2 million. P.I. Ben Bolker. My role: Senior personnel, Advisory Board member.
  • NSF PIRE – Collaborative Research: Catalyzing New International Collaborations: Interdisciplinary workgroup on water sustainability in the Tempisque Basin, NW Costa Rica. PI: Rafa Mundoz-Carpena, My role: Participating Faculty.



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