John L. Gittleman

UGA Foundation Professor in Ecology

Professional Website


Ph.D. – University of Sussex


The Zoological Society of London: Scientific Fellow, 1978-present
American Society of Mammalogists, 1979-present
Society for the Study of Evolution, 1981-present
Smithsonian Fellow, 1984-present
Society of Systematic Zoology, 1987-present
American Society of Naturalists, 1989-present
Paleontological Society, 1998-present

Research Interests

Research Interests

  • Evolutionary biology
  • Biodiversity and conservation
  • Phylogenetics

Research Projects

My research is focused on large scale ecological and evolutionary questions related to the origins, patterns and causes of species biodiversity. My work is synthetic, involving large databases, complete phylogenies (“supertrees”), and statistical comparative methods. Most recent work has looked at problems of speciation, extinction and disease.

Selected Publications

NOTE: The full list of publications and PDFs are available at:

Jones, K. E., Patel, N G., Levy, N G., Storeygard, A., Balk, D., Gittleman, J. L., and Daszak, P. (2008) Global trends in emerging infectious diseases. Nature 451: 990-993.

Cardillo, M., Mace, G. M., Gittleman, J. L., Jones, K. E., Bielby, J., and Purvis, A. (2008) The predictability of extinction: biological and external correlates of decline in mammals.  Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences. 275:1441-1448.

Cardillo, M., Gittleman, J. L., and Purvis, A. (2008) Global patterns in the phylogenetic structure of island mammal assemblages. Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences 275:1549-1556.

Davies, T.J., Fritz, S. A., Grenyer, R., Orme, C.D.L., Bielby, J., Bininda-Emonds, O.R.P., Cardillo, M., Jones, K. E., Gittleman, J. L., Mace, G. M. and Purvis, A. (2008) Phylogenetic trees and the future of mammalian biodiversity. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, USA. 105 suppl. 1 11556-11563.

Price, S. A., and Gittleman, J. L. (2007) Hunting to extinction: biology and regional economy influence extinction risk and the impact of hunting in artiodactyls. Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences. 274:1845-1851.

Bininda-Emonds, O.R.P., Cardillo, M., Jones, K.E., MacPhee, R.D.E., Beck, R.M.D., Grenyer, R. Samantha A. Price, S.A., Gittleman, J.L. Purvis, A. (2007). The delayed rise of present-day mammals. Nature 446: 507-512.

Davies, T. J., Meiri, S., Barraclough, T. G. and Gittleman, J. L. (2007) Species coexistence and character divergence across carnivores. Ecology Letters 10: 146-152.

Lindenfors, P., Nunn, C.L., Jones, K.E., Cunninghamn, A.A., Sechrest, S. and Gittleman, J.L. (2007) Parasite species richness in carnivores: effects of host body mass, latitude, geographical range and population density. Global Ecology & Biogeography 16:496-509.

Nunn, C.L., Rothschild, B. and Gittleman, J.L. (2007). Why are some species more commonly afflicted by arthritis than others? A comparative study of spondyloarthropathy in primates and carnivores. Journal of Evolutionary Biology 20:460-470.

Cardillo, M., Mace, G.M., Gittleman, J.L. & Purvis, A. (2006). Latent extinction risk and the future battlegrounds of mammal conservation. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, USA 103: 4157-4161.

Grenyer, R., Orme, C. D. L., Jackson, S. F., Thomas, G. H., Davies, R. G., Davies, T. J., Jones, K. E. Olson, V. A., Ridgely, R., Rasmussen, P., Ding, T.-S., Bennett, P. M., Blackburn, T. M., Gaston, K. J., Gittleman, J. L. and Owens, I. P. F. (2006). The global distribution and conservation of rare and threatened vertebrates. Nature 444: 93-96.