Faith R. Kearns

Academic Coordinator II
California Institute for Water Resources
1111 Franklin Street
Franklin 10106D
Oakland, CA 94607
(510) 987-9124 Create VCard



Faith coordinates research and outreach programs for the Institute. Her research interests lie at the intersection of science communication, community engagement, and relationship-building, particularly as these topics relate to the environment and water resources. She previously served as Officer with the science division of the environment program at the Pew Charitable Trusts where she collaborated with policy and advocacy staff to develop research projects and integrate scientific information into campaigns. Faith has also managed a wildfire research and outreach center at the University of California, Berkeley, served as a AAAS Science and Policy Fellow at the U.S. Department of State, and developed science communication projects at the Ecological Society of America. She received degrees in freshwater ecology and policy from the University of California, Berkeley (Ph.D.) and environmental science from Northern Arizona University (B.S.).


Ph.D. Environmental Science, UC Berkeley. 2003
B.S. Environmental Science, Geology, Political Science, Northern Arizona University. 1996


water and drought, fire, climate change,science communication

Areas of Expertise (click to see all ANR academics with this expertise)


Peer Reviewed

  • Koundinya, V.; Chiarella, C.; Kocher, S.; Kearns, F. (2020). Disasters Happen: Supporting Cooperative Extension Personnel for Disaster Management in California Communities. Journal of Extension. 58(5): v58-5a2.
  • Pathak, T.B.; Maskey, M.L.; Dahlberg, J.A.; Kearns, F.R.; Bali, K.M.; D., Zaccaria. (2018). Climate change trends and impacts on California agriculture: A detailed review. Agronomy. 8:3.
  • Kearns, F. (2012). "From science communication to relationship-building: Contemplative practice and community engagement in the environmental sciences." Journal of Environmental Studies and Sciences 2(3): 257-277.
  • Stephens, S.L.; Adams, M.A.; Handmer, J.; Kearns, F.R.; Leicester, B.; Leonard, J.; Moritz, M.A. (2009). "Urban-wildland fires: How California and other regions of the U.S. can learn from Australia." Environmental Research Letters: 014010.
  • Cleve, C.; Kelly, M.; Kearns, F.R.; Moritz, M. (2008). "Classification of the wildland–urban interface: A comparison of pixel- and object-based classifications using high-resolution aerial photography." Computers, Environment, and Urban Systems 32: 317–326.
  • Pedersen, B.; Kearns, F.; Kelly, M. (2007). "Methods for facilitating web-based participatory research informatics." Ecological Informatics 2(1): 33-42.
  • Kearns, F.R.; Goldstein, N.C.; Pedersen, B.; Moritz, M.A. (2007). "The Fire Information Engine: A Web-Based Toolkit for Wildfire-Related Needs." Journal of Map and Geography Libraries 4: 195-207.
  • Kearns, F.R.; Kelly, M.; Carter, J.L.; Resh, V.H. (2005). "The use of landscape pattern metrics to quantify spatial configuration in a watershed context." Landscape Ecology 20: 113–125.
  • Kelly, M.; Kearns, F.; Tuxen, K. (2004). "Geospatial informatics for management of a new forest disease: Sudden Oak Death." Photogrammetric Engineering and Remote Sensing 70(9): 1001-1004.
  • Kearns, F.; Kelly, M.; Tuxen, K. (2003). "Everything happens somewhere: Using webGIS as a tool for sustainable natural resource management." Frontiers in Ecology and the Environment 1(10): 541-548.

Non-Peer Reviewed

  • Kearns, Faith (2021). Getting to the Heart of Science Communication: A Guide to Engagement (book). Washington, DC, Island Press. 200 pp.
  • Pierce, G.; Roquemore, P.; Kearns, F. (2021). Wildfire and Water Supply in California: Advancing a Research and Policy Agenda. UC Ag and Natural Resources, California Institute for Water Resources and UCLA Luskin Center for Innovation. 24 pp.
  • Kocher, S.; Kearns, F.; Koundinya, V.; Oatman, B.; Alamillo, D.; Panarella, K.; Drill, S.; Schohr, T.; Lee, D.; Thorpe, W. (2020). Disasters Happen, We Can and Will Be Prepared: Disaster Preparation and Response Guide for the UC ANR Community. University of California, Division of Agriculture and Natural Resources. 20 pp.
  • Kearns, Faith (2019). Adapting to the changing climate is mission critical for California. Bay Nature. January.
  • Pathak, T.B.; Maskey, M.L.; Dahlberg, J.A.; Kearns, F.R.; Bali, K.M.; D., Zaccaria (2019). Climate change and California agriculture. Progressive Crop Consultant. March/April, 26-32.
  • Kearns, Faith; Moritz, Max (2019). Why we need to treat wildfire as a public health issue in California. The Conversation.
  • Kearns, F.R.; Moritz, M.A. (2018). How fierce fall and winter winds help fuel California fires. The Conversation. November 16.
  • Kearns, F.R.; Parker, D.T. (2018). Supporting sustainable groundwater management. California Agriculture. 72:1, 6-7.
  • Grantham, Ted; Kocher, Susie; Kearns, Faith (2018). UC Cooperative Extension takes leading role in climate change research and extension. UC Delivers. August.
  • Grantham, T.; Kearns, F.R.; Kocher, S.; Pathak, T.; Roche, L. (2017). "Building climate change resilience in California through UC Cooperative Extension." California Agriculture 71(4): 197-200.
  • Kearns, F.R. (2017). California fire damage to homes is less ‘random’ than it seems. The Conversation. December 7.
  • Kearns, F.R. (2017). California’s massive fires reveal our illusion of control over disasters. Bay Nature. December 5.
  • Parker, D.; Kearns, F. (2016). "California's water paradox: Why enough will never be enough." The California Journal of Politics and Policy 8(3): 1-2.
  • Kearns, F. (2016) Loss for words: Art, language, and the challenges of living on a changing planet. The Conversation
  • Kearns, F. (2015). A relational approach to climate change: Working with people and conflict. Climate Change Across the Curriculum.E. Fretz. Lexington Books.
  • Parker, D.; Kearns, F. (2015) Californian drought: Challenges for farmers and city dwellers. BBC
  • Parker, D.; Kearns, F. (2015) California's water paradox: Why enough will never be enough. The Conversation
  • Kearns, F. (2015) Scientists Have Feelings Too. Hippo Reads
  • Kearns, F. (2015) Stretching science: why emotional intelligence is key to tackling climate change. The Conversation
  • Kearns, F. (2015) The Art and Science of Waiting. Hippo Reads
  • Kearns, F. (2015) The Stepping Stones of Integrating Emotions into Practicing Science. On Being
  • Kearns, F.; Parker, D. (2015) What would it take to end California’s drought? The Conversation
  • Kearns, F. (2014) 5 Key Facts about the California Drought—and 5 Ways We’re Responding to It. Hippo Reads
  • Lymn, N.; Bednarek, A.; Kearns, F. (2010). "Making information meaningful." Frontiers in Ecology and the Environment 8(10): 507.
  • Shlisky, A.; Waugh, J.; Gonzalez, P.; Gonzalez, M.; Manta, M.; Santoso, H.; Nuruddin, A.A.; Rodríguez-Trejo, D.A.; Swaty, R.; Schmidt, D.; Kaufmann, M.; Myers, R.; Alencar, A.; Kearns, F.; Johnson, D.; Smith, J.; Zollne, D. (2007). Fire, Ecosystems, and People: Threats and Strategies for Global Biodiversity Conservation. Arlington, VA, The Nature Conservancy. GFI Technical Report 2007-2.
  • Fend, S.V.; Carter, J.L.; Kearns, F.R. (2005). Relationships of field habitat measurements, visual habitat indices, and land cover to benthic macroinvertebrates in urbanized streams of the Santa Clara Valley, California. American Fisheries Society, Symposium 47.
  • Kearns, F. (2003). The Relationship Between Physical Habitat and Biology in Freshwater Ecosystems. ProQuest, UMI Dissertations Publishing.
  • Kearns, F. (1998). "Fisheries as experimental systems in ecology." Bulletin of the Ecological Society of America 79(2): 165-166.
  • Kearns, F. (1997). "Human population and consumption: What are the ecological limits?" Bulletin of the Ecological Society of America 78(2): 161-163.
  • Kearns, F. (1997). "Scientific opportunities created by the newly consolidated U.S. Geological Survey and National Biological Service." Bulletin of the Ecological Society of America 78(2): 157-158.

ANR Workgroup Associations

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