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Monitoring fire effects: Lessons learned through long-term observations

Guest Editors:

J. Kevin Hiers, The Strategic Environmental Research and Development Program (SERDP) and the Environmental Security Technology Certification Program (ESTCP), Washington, DC, USA
Morgan Varner, Tall Timbers, Tallahassee, FL, USA
Sharon M. Hood, USDA Forest Service, Missoula, MT, USA
C. Alina Cansler, University of Montana, Missoula, MT, USA

CALL FOR PAPERS | Submission deadline: January 31, 2025 

Our understanding of fire effects is often based on observations taken immediately after the fire is out. However, the full measure of impacts and recovery trajectories are often not clear until years or decades following fire. There is a need to capitalize on long-term observations of fire effects where the data are available. This Fire Ecology collection will improve our understanding of fire-caused changes and enable models of fire effects and vegetation recovery to better provide realistic outputs.

Students and Early Career Researchers (especially SAFE members) are encouraged to submit their research to this collection, and take advantage of the SERC incentive. Details about the SERC incentive can be found in the descriptive text of each article type.

Pre-submission enquiries are welcome.

Image caption: Redwood Mtn., Kings Canyon NP., Image credits: © Bruce Kilgore and Tony Caprio, NPS  

Meet the Guest Editors

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J. Kevin Hiers, PhD, The Strategic Environmental Research and Development Program (SERDP) and the Environmental Security Technology Certification Program (ESTCP), Washington, DC, USA

Dr. Hiers is the Department of Defense (DoD) Program Manager for Resource Conservation and Resilience that oversees SERDP and ESTCP. He identifies research needs for conservation, climate adaptation, and wildland fire management on DoD installations, managing over 75 projects across the U.S. and Pacific Islands. With nearly 30 years of experience, Dr. Hiers has specialized in fire ecology and endangered species conservation. He previously held roles at Eglin AFB, The Nature Conservancy, and the U.S. Geological Survey. Dr. Hiers earned his undergraduate degree from Sewanee: The University of the South, Sewanee, and a Master’s in conservation ecology from the University of Georgia, Athens. He recently joined the editorial board of Fire Ecology.

Morgan Varner, PhD, Tall Timbers, Tallahassee, FL, USA

Director of Fire Research at Tall Timbers, tasked with enhancing global understanding of fire behavior and its impacts on ecosystems, Dr. Varner has a PhD in interdisciplinary ecology from the University of Florida, Gainesville, a MS in forestry from Auburn University, Auburn, and a BS in forest resources from the University of Idaho, Moscow. He served as Chair of the Coalition of Prescribed Fire Councils, Inc. and held a leadership role at the USDA Forest Service Pacific Northwest Research Station, Corvallis. Dr. Varner's appointment underscores Tall Timbers' commitment to advancing fire science and promoting the responsible use of prescribed fire, aligning with his research and collaborative efforts on both local and international scales. He is a long-standing Fire Ecology editorial board member.

Sharon M. Hood, PhD, USDA Forest Service, Missoula, MT, USA

A research ecologist at the USDA Forest Service, Dr. Hood earned her PhD in organismal biology and ecology from the University of Montana, Missoula. Her research focuses on fire-induced tree mortality, fuel and silvicultural treatment effects, tree defenses, and ecosystem resilience. Dr. Hood's work seeks to understand the causes and mechanisms of postfire tree mortality, how changes in fire regimes affect forest succession and resilience, and the impact of fire on tree susceptibility to bark beetle attacks. Her research aims to enhance predictive models of tree mortality and inform management practices to foster resilient forests amidst climate change and disturbances. Dr. Hood is a long-standing Fire Ecology editorial board member.

C. Alina Cansler, PhD, University of Montana, Missoula, MT, USA

An Assistant Professor specializing in applied fire and landscape ecology, Dr. Cansler's research at western North America examines the impacts of disturbance and climate change on ecosystems, leveraging field data and remote sensing techniques. Certified as a Fire Ecologist by the Association for Fire Ecology, fire ecology remains a central focus of her work. Dr. Cansler's research spans plant functional traits, community ecology, plant conservation biology, ecosystem biomass and fuel structure, reanalysis of large datasets, and active remote sensing applications for research and management purposes. She earned her PhD and MS in environmental and forest resources from the University of Washington, Seattle. Dr. Cansler recently joined the editorial board of Fire Ecology.

Submission Guidelines

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Open Access Funding Opportunities 

Fire Ecology is an open access journal in which an article processing charge applies. Please see our Journal Pricing FAQs for general APC information and our APC Funding & Support Services for assistance.

Members of the Association for Fire Ecology are entitled to a 20% discount off the APC of their accepted paper in Fire Ecology, and should send their APC token request immediately after acceptance to the AFE Administrative Director. The member discount cannot be applied retrospectively.

Contact Information

J. Kevin Hiers
The Strategic Environmental Research and Development Program (SERDP) and the Environmental Security Technology Certification Program (ESTCP)
Washington, DC

Morgan Varner
Tall Timbers
Tallahassee, FL

Sharon M. Hood
USDA Forest Service
Missoula, MT

C. Alina Cansler
University of Montana
Missoula, MT

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Annual Journal Metrics

  • Citation Impact 2023
    Journal Impact Factor: 3.6
    5-year Journal Impact Factor: 4.6
    Source Normalized Impact per Paper (SNIP): 1.352
    SCImago Journal Rank (SJR): 1.028

    Speed 2023
    Submission to first editorial decision (median days): 14
    Submission to acceptance (median days): 156

    Usage 2023
    Downloads: 514,573
    Altmetric mentions: 687