Dr Miguel Franco
Profiles

Dr Miguel Franco

Associate Professor

School of Biological & Marine Sciences (Faculty of Science & Engineering)

Role

International Tutor

Qualifications

Visiting Research Fellow, The Open University (1999-2000)

Senior Researcher, National Autonomous University of Mexico (1992-2000)

Head of Department of Evolutionary Ecology, National Autonomous University of Mexico (1997-1999)

Visiting Research Fellow, University of Melbourne (1996)

Visiting Research Fellow, The Open University (1990 through 1996)

Associate Researcher, National Autonomous University of Mexico (1986-1992)

PhD, University College of North Wales (1985)

MSc, National Autonomous University of Mexico (1981)

BSc, National Autonomous University of Mexico (1979)

Professional membership

British Ecological Society

Botanical Society of the British Isles

Teaching interests

Teaching is an integral part of my wider academic interests and is linked to my research activities. At Plymouth I have taught in, among other undergraduate modules, Animal and Plant identification Skills,  Principles of Conservation Biology, Issues in Conservation Biology, Applied Conservation Biology, Conservation in Practice, Ecology Fieldcourse, Methods in Demography, and Population Ecology and Conservation. At postgraduate level, I have taught the Ecology Fieldcourse, Techniques in Botanical Conservation, Plant Taxonomy and Identification, and the statistics section of Postgraduate Research Skills and Methods. Undergraduate modules have been embedded in the programmes (BSc Hons) Animal Behaviour and Welfare, Biological Sciences, Conservation Biology, Ecology, Environmental Biology, Marine Biology, Marine Biology and Coastal Ecology, Plant Sciences, and Wildlife Conservation. Postgraduate modules have been imparted in programmes (MSc/MRes) Biological Diversity, Botanical Conservation, Marine Biology, Sustainable Aquaculture, and Zoo Conservation Biology.

Staff serving as external examiners

External examiner:
Ulian, T. 2004. The demography of Oritrophium peruvianum (Lam.) Cuatr. and the impacts of harvesting on its populations in the Venezuelan Andes. PhD thesis, University of Greenwich.
Zuidema, P. 2000. Demography of exploited tree species in the Bolivian Amazon. PhD thesis, Utrecht University.

External examiner for module "The Environmental Web" at the Open University. 2014-2017.

Research interests

I am interested in the study of the factors that determine variation in the dynamics of populations (1-6) and how this variation underpins the evolution of the wide diversity of life histories found in nature (7-10) and the evolution of senescence (11-13). Because demography deals with the currencies of survival, growth and reproduction as measures of ecological success, my interest in the study of population dynamics extends into the use of demographic tools to conserve and manage threatened species (14-18). I am also interested in understanding the mechanisms through which plants compete (19) and coexist (20-21) and how resource limitation and differential resource allocation generates particular patterns of the relationship between population mass and population density (22).

1) Golubov, J., Mandujano, M.C., FRANCO, M., Montaña, C., Eguiarte, L., & López-Portillo, J. 1999. Demography of the invasive woody perennial Prosopis glandulosa (honey mesquite). Journal of Ecology 87: 955-962.

2) Mandujano, M.C., Montaña, C., FRANCO, M., Golubov, J. & Flores-Martínez, A. 2001. Integration of demographic annual variability in a clonal desert cactus. Ecology 82: 344-359.

3) Zuidema, P.A. & FRANCO, M. 2001. Integrating vital rate variability into perturbation analysis: an evaluation for matrix population models of six plant species. Journal of Ecology 89, 995-1005.

4) Stott, I., FRANCO, M., Carslake, D., Townley, S. & Hodgson, D. 2010. Boom or Bust? A comparative analysis of transient population dynamics in plants. Journal of Ecology 98: 302-311.

5) Ferrer, M.M., Montaña, C. & & FRANCO, M. 2015 Habitat-specific demography, source-sink dynamics, and the niche of a common shrub in a heterogeneous and fluctuating environment. Ecography 38: 930-938.

6) Salguero-Gómez, R., Jones, O.R., Archer, C.R., Buckley, Y.M., Che-Castaldo, J., Caswell, H., Hodgson, D., Scheuerlein, A., Conde, D.A., Brinks, E., de Buhr, H., Farack, C., Gottschalk, F., Hartmann, A., Henning, A., Hoppe, G., Römer, G., Runge, J., Ruoff, T., Wille, J., Zeh, S., Davison, R., Vieregg, D., Baudisch, A., Altwegg, R., Colchero, F., Dong, M., de Kroon, H., Lebreton, J.-D., Metcalf, C.J.E., Neel, M.M., Parker, I.M., Takada, T., Valverde, T., Vélez-Espino, L.A., Wardle, G.M., FRANCO, M., & Vaupel, J.W. 2015. The COMPADRE Plant Matrix Database: an open online repository for plant demography. Journal of Ecology 103: 202-218.

7) Silvertown, J., FRANCO, M., Pisanty, I. & Mendoza, A. 1993. Comparative plant demography - relative importance of life cycle components to the finite rate of increase in woody and herbaceous perennials. Journal of Ecology 81: 465-476.

8) FRANCO, M. & Silvertown, J. 1996. Life history variation in plants: an exploration of the fast-slow continuum hypothesis. Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society, London, B, 351: 1341-1348.

9)  FRANCO, M. & Silvertown, J.. 2004. A comparative demography of plants based upon elasticities of vital rates. Ecology 85, 531-538.

10) Adler, P.B., Salguero-Gómez, R., Compagnoni, A., Hsu, J.S., Ray-Mukherjee, J., Mbeaus-Ache, C. & FRANCO, M. 2014. Functional traits explain variation in plant life-history strategies. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (USA) 111: 740-745.

11) Silvertown, J., FRANCO, M. & Pérez-Ishiwara. 2001. Evolution of senescence in iteroparous perennial plants. Evolutionary Ecology Research 3, 393-412.

12) Baudisch, A., Salguero-Gómez, R., Jones, O.R., Wrycza, T., Mbeau-Ache, C., FRANCO, M. & Colchero, F. 2013. The pace and shape of senescence in angiosperms. Journal of Ecology 101: 596–606.

13) Mbeau-Ache, C. & FRANCO, M. 2013. The time distribution of reproductive value measures the pace of life. Journal of Ecology 101: 1293-1280.

14) Silvertown, J. FRANCO, M. & Menges, E. 1996. Interpretation of elasticity matrices as an aid to the management of plant populations for conservation. Conservation Biology 10: 591-597.

15) Chediack, S.E. & FRANCO, M. 2003. Harvesting and conservation of heart palm. In: C. Galindo-Leal & I. de Gusmao Camara (eds.), The Atlantic Forests of South America: biodiversity status, threats and outlook, pp 406-412. Center for Applied Biodiversity Science, Conservation International. Island Press, Washington D.C., USA.

16) Keiman, A.F. & FRANCO, M. 2004. Can't see the forest for the butterflies: the need for understanding forest dynamics at the monarch's overwintering sites. In: K. Oberhauser & M. Solensky (ed.), The monarch butterfly: biology & conservation, pp 135-140. Cornell University Press, Ithaca, New York, USA.

17) Rodríguez-Ortega, C., FRANCO, M. & Mandujano, M.C. 2006. Serotiny and seed germination in three threatened species of Mammillaria (Cactaceae). Basic and Applied Ecology 7: 533-544.

18) Juarez, L., Montaña, C. & FRANCO, M. 2014. The viability of two populations of the terrestrial orchid Cyclopogon luteoalbus in a fragmented tropical mountain cloud forest: dormancy delays extinction. Biological Conservation 170: 162-168.

19) García-Barrios, L., Mayer-Foulkes, D., FRANCO, M., Urquijo-Vásquez, G. & Franco-Pérez, J. (2001). Development and validation of a spatially explicit individual-based mixed crop growth model. Bulletin of Mathematical Biology 63, 507-526.

20) Verhulst, J., Montana, C., Mandujano, M.C. & FRANCO, M. 2008. Demographic mechanisms in the coexistence of two closely related perennials in a fluctuating environment. Oecologia 156: 95-105.

21) Cázarez-Martínez, J., Montaña, C. & FRANCO, M. 2010. The role of pollen limitation on the coexistence of two dioecious, wind-pollinated, closely-related shrubs in a fluctuating environment. (submitted).

22) FRANCO, M. & Kelly, C.K. (1998). The interspecific mass-density relationship and plant geometry. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (USA) 95: 7830-7835.

Research degrees awarded to supervised students

Mbeau-Ache, C. 2014. Comparative demography and life history evolution of plants. University of Plymouth.

Chediack, S.E. 2013. Demografia del palmito (Euterpe edulis Mart. Palmae) en Misiones, Argentina [The demography of palmheart (Euterpe edulis Mart. Palmae) in Misiones, Argentina]. PhD thesis (in Spanish), National University of Mexico.

Maliwichi-Nyirenda, C.P. 2008. The conservation biology of Berberis holstii Engl. in Nyika National Park, Malawi. PhD thesis, University of Plymouth.

Rodriguez-Ortega, C.E. 2008. Consecuencias demograficas y evolutivas del secuestro de semillas en tres especies del genero Mammillaria (Cactaceae) [Demographic and evolutionary consequences of serotiny in three species of Mammillaria (Cactaceae)]. PhD thesis (in Spanish). National University of Mexico.

Aguirre-Hidalgo, V. 2008. Demography and genetic diversity of the Mexican black iguana, Ctenosaura pectinata. PhD thesis, University of Plymouth.

Mata-Zayas, E.E. 2007. The distribution oif phylogenetic diversity of mammals in Mexico and its implications for conservation. PhD thesis, University of Plymouth.

García-Barrios, L. 1998. Desarrollo y evaluación de un modelo dinámico espacial del crecimiento de cultivos asociados [Development and validation of a spatial model of intercropping]. PhD thesis (in Spanish), National University of Mexico.

Mendoza, A. 1993. Demografía de Reinhardtia gracilis una palma con crecimiento clonal (Demography of Reinhardtia gracilis, a palm with clonal growth). PhD thesis (in Spanish), National University of Mexico.

Durán, R. 1992. Variabilidad intraespecífica y dinámica poblacional de Pseudophoenix sargentii [Intraspecific variability and population dynamics of Pseudophoenix sargentii]. PhD thesis (in Spanish), National University of Mexico.

Key publications are highlighted

Journals
Articles
McDonald JL, Franco M, Townley S, Ezard THG, Jelbert K & Hodgson DJ 2017 'Divergent demographic strategies of plants in variable environments' Nature Ecology & Evolution 1, 0029-0029 , DOI PEARL
Ferrer MM, Montana C & Franco M 2015 'Habitat-specific demography, source-sink dynamics, and the niche of a common shrub in a heterogeneous and fluctuating environment' ECOGRAPHY 38, (9) 930-938 Author Site , DOI
Salguero-Gomez R, Jones OR, Archer CR, Buckley YM, Che-Castaldo J, Caswell H, Hodgson D, Scheuerlein A, Conde DA & Brinks E 2015 'The COMPADRE Plant Matrix Database: an open online repository for plant demography' JOURNAL OF ECOLOGY 103, (1) 202-218 Author Site , DOI
2014 'Correction for Adler et al., Functional traits explain variation in plant life history strategies' Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 111, (27) 10019-10019 , DOI
Hanley ME, Awbi AJ & Franco M 2014 'Going native? Flower use by bumblebees in English urban gardens' Ann Bot 113, (5) 799-806 Author Site , DOI PEARL
Juárez L, Montaña C & Franco M 2014 'The viability of two populations of the terrestrial orchid Cyclopogon luteoalbus in a fragmented tropical mountain cloud forest: Dormancy delays extinction' Biological Conservation 170, (0) 162-168 Author Site , DOI
Adler PB, Salguero-Gomez R, Compagnoni A, Hsu JS, Ray-Mukherjee J, Mbeau-Ache C & Franco M 2014 'Functional traits explain variation in plant life history strategies' PROCEEDINGS OF THE NATIONAL ACADEMY OF SCIENCES OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA 111, (2) 740-745 Author Site , DOI
Mbeau-Ache C & Franco M 2013 'The time distribution of reproductive value measures the pace of life' Journal of Ecology 101, , DOI
Baudisch A, Salguero-Gomez R, Jones OR, Wrycza T, Mbeau-Ache C, Franco M & Colchero F 2013 'The pace and shape of senescence in angiosperms' JOURNAL OF ECOLOGY 101, (3) 596-606 Author Site , DOI
Hanley ME, Franco M, Dean CE, Franklin EL, Harris HR, Hayes AG, Rapson SR, Rowse G, Thomas KC & Waterhouse BR 2011 'Increased bumblebee abundance along the margins of a mass flowering crop: evidence for pollination spillover' Oikos 120, (11) 1618-1624 , DOI
Cazares-Martinez J, Montana C & Franco M 2011 'The role of pollen limitation on the coexistence of two dioecious, wind-pollinated, closely related shrubs in a fluctuating environment' Oecologia 164, (3) 679-687 , DOI
Maliwichi-Nyirenda CP, Maliwichi LL & Franco M 2011 'Medicinal uses of Berberis holstii Engl. (Berberidaceae) in Malawi, the only African endemic barberry' Journal of Medicinal Plants Research 5, 1367-1373
Stott I, Franco M, Carslake D, Townley S & Hodgson D 2010 'Boom or bust? A comparative analysis of transient population dynamics in plants' Journal of Ecology 98, (2) 302-311 , DOI
Stott I, Franco M, Carslake D, Townley S & Hodgson D 2010 'Boom or bust? A comparative analysis of transient population dynamics in plants' 98, (2) 302-311
Montellano M, Pinero D, Franco M & Mendoza A 2009 'LAURA ARRIAGA CABRERA scientist had works published' BOLETIN DE LA SOCIEDAD BOTANICA DE MEXICO 85, 127-128 Author Site
Hanley ME, Franco M, Pichon S, Darvill B & Goulson D 2008 'Breeding system, pollinator choice and variation in pollen quality in British herbaceous plants' FUNCTIONAL ECOLOGY 22, (4) 592-598 Author Site , DOI
Verhulst J, Montana C, Mandujano MC & Franco M 2008 'Demographic mechanisms in the coexistence of two closely related perennials in a fluctuating environment' Oecologia 156, (1) 95-105 , DOI
Hanley ME, Franco M, Pichon S, Darvill B & Goulson D 2008 'Breeding system, pollinator choice and variation in pollen quality in British herbaceous plants' 22, (4) 592-598
Rodriguez-Ortega C, Franco M & Mandujano MC 2006 'Serotiny and seed germination in three threatened species of Mammillaria (Cactaceae)' Basic and Applied Ecology 7, (6) 533-544
Franco 2004 'A comparative demography of plants based upon elasticities of vital rates' Ecology 85 (2), 531-538 , DOI
Franco M & Silvertown J 2004 'A comparative demography of plants based upon elasticities of vital rates' Ecology 85, (2) 531-538
Suzan-Azpiri H, Sanchez-Ramos G, Martinez-Avalos JG, Villa-Melgarejo S & Franco M 2002 'Population structure of Pinus nelsoni Shaw, an endemic pinyon pine in Tamaulipas, Mexico' Forest Ecology and Management 165, (1-3) 193-203
Zuidema PA & Franco M 2001 'Integrating vital rate variability into perturbation analysis: an evaluation for matrix population models of six plant species' JOURNAL OF ECOLOGY 89, (6) 995-1005 Author Site , DOI
Garcia-Barrios L, Mayer-Foulkes D, Franco M, Urquijo-Vasquez G & Franco-Perez J 2001 'Development and validation of a spatially explicit individual-based mixed crop growth model' Bulletin of Mathematical Biology 63, (3) 507-526
Silvertown J, Franco M & Perez-Ishiwara R 2001 'Evolution of senescence in iteroparous perennial plants' Evolutionary Ecology Research 3, (4) 393-412
Zuidema PA & Franco M 2001 'Integrating vital rate variability into perturbation analysis: a simulation approach for computer matrix models' Journal of Ecology 89, 995-1005
Zuidema PA & Franco M 2001 'Integrating vital rate variability into perturbation analysis: an evaluation for matrix population models of six plant species' 89, (6) 995-1005
Mandujano MC, Montana C, Franco M, Golubov J & Flores-Martinez A 2001 'Integration of demographic annual variability in a clonal desert cactus' Ecology 82, (2) 344-359
Kelly CK, Smith HB, Buckley YM, Carter R, Franco M, Johnson W, Jones T, May B, Ishiwara RP & Perez-Jimenez A 2001 'Investigations in commonness and rarity: a comparative analysis of co-occurring, congeneric Mexican trees' Ecology Letters 4, (6) 618-627
Golubov J, Mandujano MD, Franco M, Montana C, Eguiarte LE & Lopez-Portillo J 1999 'Demography of the invasive woody perennial Prosopis glandulosa (honey mesquite)' 87, (6) 955-962
Mendoza A & Franco M 1998 'Sexual reproduction and clonal growth in Reinhardtia gracilis (Palmae), an understory tropical palm' 85, (4) 521-527
Franco M & Kelly CK 1998 'The interspecific mass-density relationship and plant geometry' 95, (13) 7830-7835
Harper JL, Silvertown J & Franco M 1996 'Preface' Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences 351, (1345) 1227-1231 , DOI
Silvertown J, Franco M & Menges E 1996 'Interpretation of elasticity matrices as an aid to the management of plant populations for conservation' 10, (2) 591-597
Franco M & Silvertown J 1996 'Life history variation in plants: An exploration of the fast-slow continuum hypothesis' 351, (1345) 1341-1348
Harper JL, Silvertown J & Franco M 1996 'Plant life histories: Ecological correlates and phylogenetic constraints' 351, (1345) 1227-1231
Enright NJ, Franco M & Silvertown J 1995 'COMPARING PLANT LIFE-HISTORIES USING ELASTICITY ANALYSIS - THE IMPORTANCE OF LIFE-SPAN AND THE NUMBER OF LIFE-CYCLE STAGES' 104, (1) 79-84
Franco M & Silvertown J 1994 'ON TRADE-OFFS, ELASTICITIES AND THE COMPARATIVE METHOD - A REPLY TO SHEA, REES AND WOOD' 82, (4) 958-958
SILVERTOWN J & FRANCO M 1993 'Plant Demography and Habitat: A Comparative Approach' Plant Species Biology 8, (2-3) 67-73 , DOI
Silvertown J, Franco M, Pisanty I & Mendoza A 1993 'COMPARATIVE PLANT DEMOGRAPHY - RELATIVE IMPORTANCE OF LIFE-CYCLE COMPONENTS TO THE FINITE RATE OF INCREASE IN WOODY AND HERBACEOUS PERENNIALS' 81, (3) 465-476
Silvertown J, Franco M & McConway K 1993 'THE ETERNAL TRIANGLE - AN ATTEMPT AT RECONCILIATION' 7, (3) 380-381
Silvertown J, Franco M & McConway K 1992 'A demographic interpretation of Grime's triangle' 6, (2) 130-136
Duran R & Franco M 1992 'Estudio demográfico de Pseudophoenix sargentii' Bulletin de l'Institute Francais d'études Andines 21, 609-621
Mendoza A & Franco M 1992 'Integración clonal en una palma tropical' Bulletin de l'Institute Francais d'études Andines 21, 623-635
Franco M & Silvertown J 1990 'PLANT DEMOGRAPHY - WHAT DO WE KNOW' 4, (2) 74-76
Franco M & Harper JL 1988 'COMPETITION AND THE FORMATION OF SPATIAL PATTERN IN SPACING GRADIENTS - AN EXAMPLE USING KOCHIA-SCOPARIA' 76, (4) 959-974
Arriaga L, Franco M & Sarukhan J 1988 'IDENTIFICATION OF NATURAL GROUPS OF TREES IN UNEVEN-AGED FORESTS USING MULTIVARIATE METHODS' 76, (4) 1092-1100
Franco M 1986 'THE INFLUENCE OF NEIGHBORS ON THE GROWTH OF MODULAR ORGANISMS WITH AN EXAMPLE FROM TREES' 313, (1159) 209-225
Books
Silvertown JW, Franco M & Harper JL 1997 Plant life histories. Cambridge Univ Pr
Chapters
Chediak SE & Franco M 2009 'Comparación de las dinámicas poblacionales de Palmito en bosques maduros y aprovechados en Misiones' in Carpinetti B; Garciarena M; Almirón M Parque Nacional Iguazú, Conservación y Desarrollo en la Selva Paranaense de Argentina Buenos Aires, Argentina Administración de Parques Nacionales 133-146
Keiman AF & Franco MG 2004 'Can't see the forest for the butterflies: the need for understanding forest dynamics at the monarch's overwintering sites' in Oberhauser KS; Solensky MJ The monarch butterfly Ithaca, NY Cornell Univ Pr 135-140
Chediack SE & Franco M 2003 'Harvesting and conservation of heart palm' in Galindo-Leal C; de Gusmao Camara I The Atlantic Forests of South America: biodiversity status, threats and outlook, Center for Applied Biodiversity Science, Conservation International. Island Press, Washington D.C.
Durán E, Balvanera P, Lott E, Segura G, Pérez-Jiménez LA, Islas A & Franco M 2002 'Estructura, composición y dinámica de la vegetación' in Noguera FA; Vega Rivera JH; García-Aldrete AN; Quesada Avendaño M Historia Natural de Chamela Mexico Unam 443-472
Duran R & Franco M 1995 'La contribución de la ecología de poblaciones: el caso de Pseudophoenix sargentii Wendl. ex Sarg. en la Península de Yucatán' in Mazari EL; Dávila P; Chiang F; Bye R; Elias TS Conservación de plantas en peligro de extinción Mexico UNAM 77-86
Franco M 1985 'A modular approach to tree production' in White J Studies on plant demography Academic Pr 257-272
Conference Papers
Carne DJ, Lane S, Franco M & Donkin M 2009 'Photosynthetic efficiency and carbon sequestration in evergreen and deciduous oaks in relation to different environments' S216-S216 , DOI