Michael Rosenzweig

Professor Emeritus

Positions and Education: 

  • Professor, Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, University of Arizona, 1975-present
  • Visiting Professor of Biology, Ben-Gurion University, 1981-82
  • Visiting Professor of Zoology, University of Wisconsin, 1990-91
  • Associate Professor of Biology, University of New Mexico, 1971-75
  • Assistant Professor of Biology, SUNY-Albany, 1969-71
  • Visitng Assistant Professor, Cranberry Lake Biological STation, SUNY-Albany, 1969
  • Assistant Professor of Biology, Bucknell University, Lewisbug, PA, 1965-9
  • Ph.D., Zoology, University of Pennsylvania, 1966

Honors and Awards: 

  • Ecological Society of America Eminent Ecologist Award for 2008
  • Faculty of Sci, Univ Arizona, Career Teaching Award, 2001
  • Ninth Lukacs Symp: Twentieth Century Distinguished Service Award, 1999
  • International Ecological Soc: Distinguished Statistical Ecologist, 1998
  • Udall Center for Studies in Public Policy, Univ Arizona: Fellow, 1997–8
  • Mountain Research Center, Montana State Univ: Distinguished Lecturer, 1997
  • Univ Umeå, Sweden: Distinguished Visiting Scholar, 1997
  • Univ Miami: Distinguished Visiting Professor, 1996–7
  • Univ British Columbia: Dennis Chitty Lecturer, 1995–6
  • Iowa State Univ: 30th Paul L. Errington Memorial Lecturer, 1994
  • Michigan State Univ, Kellogg Biological Station: Eminent Ecologist, 1992
  • Ben-Gurion Univ of the Negev, Israel: Jacob Blaustein Scholar, 1992
  • Univ Wisconsin, Madison: Brittingham Fellow, 1990 – 91
  • Monash University, Melbourne, Australia: The Jock Marshall Fellow, 1989
  • Australian Academy of Science: The Rudi Lemberg Travelling Fellow, 1988–9
  • Soc for the Study of Evolution: Vice-President, 1988 – 1989
  • Amer Soc Zoologists: Outstanding Service Award, 1986
  • Amer Soc Zoologists: Chair, Division of Ecology, 1985 – 1986
  • College of Science, Univ Arizona: Outstanding Teaching Award, 1985
  • Univ Miami: Distinguished Visiting Professor, 1983
  • Soc for the Study of Evolution: Counselor: 1981 – 1983
  • UC San Diego: Distinguished Visiting Scholar, 1977

Editorial Work: 

Rosenzweig was appointed to the editorial board of the Ecological Society of America in 1977 and has served as a scientific editor ever since. With Michael Usher, he was editor (1979–1991) of Chapman & Hall's series on population biology. He was an editor of Paleobiology (1983–1986) and has been an editor of the Israel Journal of Zoology since 1993. In 1986 he founded the journal Evolutionary Ecology. He continued as its editor-in-chief until its prices climbed too high. Then he and his wife Carole founded a publishing house, Evolutionary Ecology Ltd. and a new journal, Evolutionary Ecology Research, of which he is the publisher and editor-in-chief. They operate EER according to their belief that an academic publisher has to do more than make a profit; it has the responsibility to disseminate information as widely and inexpensively as possible.

Research Interests: 

Rosenzweig's research combines the fields of ecology, evolution, and mathematical theory. For details, link to his home page where it is described under the following headings:
Species diversity
Desert mammal ecology
Optimal density-dependent habitat selection
Predation dynamics

Rosenzweig tries to address matters of public concern by applying the results of his and other ecological research. He recently served on two committees of the National Academy of Sciences, one to develop early warning indicators of environmental health (Environmental Indicators for the Nation, National Academy Press, 2000); the second to identify the Grand Challenges in Environmental Science (National Academy Press, 2001).

Michael Rosenzweig studies environmental issues, habitat selection, and species diversity. Environmental issues are addressed with new methods for censusing and for assessing environmental health using the rules of species-area curves. Isoleg theory has been developed and exploited to study optimal density-dependent habitat selection, and has led to the linkage of behavior, population dynamics and rules of ecological community organization. His papers on species diversity integrate ecology and evolution to present a basic continent-scale mathematical theory of diversity as a process resulting from the differential equations of speciation and extinction. They identify area as a principle variable and help to explain why the tropics are so rich.

Selected Publications: 

Rosenzweig has edited two books and written three. His 1974 book identifies natural selection as the ultimate long-term threat to keeping human population size within bounds (And Replenish the Earth, Harper & Row). His 1995 book is an advanced text in species diversity (Species Diversity in Space & Time, Cambridge University). His forthcoming book, Embracing Nature (Oxford U. Press), develops a new strategy for saving the Earth's species in a world full of people. (Selections from a draft version of the latter, called The Careful Foot, are available.)

Publications are listed on his home page. Several preprints are also available there.

PubMed list of publications for Mike Rosenzweig