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Johanna Schmitt


Evolution and Ecology

5328 Storer Hall


1981 Ph.D. Stanford University Biological Sciences
1974 B.A. Swarthmore College with distinction in Biology

Research Contribution to Society:

Our goal is to understand the genetic basis of ecologically important plant traits and use this understanding to predict plant responses to environmental change. For example, how will the timing of seasonal events such as flowering respond to rapid warming? Can plant populations adapt fast enough to keep up with climate change? Answering such questions is important for managing crop and forest yields, weeds, and rare plant populations on a rapidly changing planet.

Research Interests:

Plant ecological genomics and evolutionary ecology; mechanisms of phenotypic plasticity, local adaptation and response to environmental change


2010 - American Academy of Arts and Sciences
2008 - National Academy of Sciences
2007 - Alexander von Humboldt Research Award
2003 - Fellow, American Association for the Advancement of Science
1992-1993 NSF Midcareer Fellowship in Environmental Biology
1991-1996 NSF Faculty Award for Women in Science and Engineering

Department and Center Affiliations:

Center for Population Biology

Professional Societies:

Past President, Society for the Study of Evolution and American Society of Naturalists

CBS Graduate Group Affiliations:

Plant Biology  
Population Biology  

Specialties / Focus:

Plant Biology
Environmental and Integrative Biology
Systematics and Evolutionary Biology


Last updated 6/11/2013
Fournier-Level, A. Korte, M.D. Cooper, M. Nordborg, J. Schmitt and A.M. Wilczek. 2011. A map of local adaptation in Arabidopsis thaliana. Science 334: 86-89.

Huang, X., J. Schmitt, L. Dorn, C. Griffith, S. Effgen, S. Takao, M. Koornneef, K. Donohue. 2010. The earliest stages of adaptation in an experimental plant population: strong selection on QTLs for seed dormancy. Molecular Ecology 19: 1335-1351

Wilzcek, A.M., L.T. Burghardt, A.R. Cobb, M.D. Cooper, S.M.Welch, J. Schmitt. 2010 Genetic and physiological bases for phenological responses to current and predicted climates. Phil. Trans. Roy. Soc. B., 365:3129-3147.

Wilczek, J. Roe, M. Knapp, M. Cooper, C.M. Lopez-Gallego, L. Martin, C. Muir, S. Sim, A. Walker, J. Anderson, J.F. Egan, B. Moyers, R. Petipas, A. Giakountis, E. Charbit, G. Coupland, S.M. Welch, and J. Schmitt. 2009. Effects of genetic perturbation on seasonal life history plasticity. Science, 323:930-934.

Stinchcombe, J.R., C.Weinig, K.D. Heath, M.T. Brock, and J. Schmitt. 2009. Polymorphic genes of major effect: consequences for variation, selection, and evolution. Genetics 182: 911-922.

Fournier-Level, A., A.M.Wilczek, M.D. Cooper, J.L. Roe, J. Anderson, D. Eaton, B.T. Moyers, R.H. Petipas, R.N.Schaeffer, B. Pieper, M.Reymond, M. Koornneef, S.M. Welch, D.L.Remington, and J. Schmitt. 2013. Paths to selection on life history loci in different natural environments across the native range of Arabidopsis thaliana. Molecular Ecology doi: 10.1111/mec.12285