Hugh Safford

Ph.D. UC-Davis 1999

Research Interests

  • I am the senior vegetation ecologist for the USDA-Forest Service Pacific Southwest Region, and I hold a research faculty position with the Department of Environmental Science and Policy at UC-Davis. My principal areas of professional expertise are community and landscape ecology, fire ecology, restoration ecology, and biogeography. I manage a staff of ecologists that provides expertise in vegetation and fire ecology, inventory, and monitoring to resource management on the 18 National Forests in California. I also work internationally, and I provide technical assistance on fire, forest management, and climate change issues to the US-Agency for International Development (USAID) and the International Program of the USDA-Forest Service. My most recent international projects include fire and forest management planning in National Parks in northern Mexico, management response to climate change in mountain ecosystems in Brazil, and forest restoration in the Middle East. Current research focus areas include: - Disturbance (especially fire and grazing) impacts on biodiversity - Human management effects on forest structure and fuels - Fire and forest management planning in Mediterranean-climate ecoregions - Ecology of tropical mountain ecosystems - Management response to climate change - Forest ecosystem restoration - Fire severity and frequency and their effects on forest succession and sustainability

Areas of Emphasis

  • Integrative Ecology, Restoration Ecology, Ecosystem and Landscape Ecology


  • USDA Forest Service, Pacific Southwest Region; UC-Davis: Environmental Science and Policy