Thomas Swetnam

Regents' Professor - Dendrochronology
Director - Laboratory of Tree-Ring Research
Professor (joint appointments) - School of Environment and Natural Resources; School of Geography and Development; Ecology and Evolutionary Biology

Selected adaptation programs/projects:

  • Long-term vulnerability and resilience of coupled human-natural ecosystems to fire regime and climate changes at an ancient Wildland Urban Interface, NSF Dynamics of Coupled-Human Natural Systems Program project, principal investigator
  • Center for Mediterranean Archaeology and The Environment (CMATE) at University of Arizona, founding member
  • Integrating Historic Patterns of Wildfire, Emissions, and Climate for Siberia as a Basis for Estimating the Impacts of Fire on Carbon Cycling, NOAA Terrestrial Ecosystems and US Forest Service, co-principal investigator

Selected publications:

  • Swetnam, T.W., C.H. Baisan, A.C. Caprio, P.M. Brown, R.S. Anderson, and D.W. Hallett, 2009. Multi-millennia fire history of the Giant Forest, Sequoia National Park, USA. Fire Ecology, 5(3):117-147.
  • Williams, A.P., C.D. Allen, A.K. Macalady, R.D. Griffin, C.A. Woodhouse, D.M. Meko, T.W. Swetnam, S.A. Rauscher, R. Seager, H.D. Grissino-Mayer, J.S. Dean, E.R. Cook, C. Gangodagamage, M. Cai, and N.G. McDowell. Temperature as a potent driver of regional forest drought stress and tree mortality. Nature Climate Change, 2(10): 1–6, 2012.
  • Stephens, S.L., J.K. Agee, P.Z. Fulé, M.P. North, W.H. Romme, T.W. Swetnam, and M.G. Turner. Land use, 2013 Managing forests and fire in changing climates,Science, 342(6154): 41–2.

Employment highlights:

  • 2012 to present: Regents’ Professor of Dendrochronology 2000 to present: Director, Laboratory of Tree-Ring Research
  • 1988 to 2012: Assistant/Associate/Professor of Dendrochronology, Laboratory of Tree-Ring Research 1978-1980: Forestry Technician, U. S. Forest Service, Gila Wilderness, New Mexico
  • 1976-1977: Park Technician, National Park Service, Grand Canyon National Park, Arizona


  • Ph.D., University of Arizona, Geosciences, 1987
  • M.S., University of Arizona, Watershed Management, 1983
  • B.S., University of New Mexico, General Biology, Chemistry, 1977
Geographic Area
Expertise Area
Ecology and Restoration
Fire Management
Interdisciplinary Problem-Solving
Natural Resources Management