Interim Associate Chair
Research: Microbial Ecology
Rima Franklin earned her Ph.D. in environmental science in 2004 from the University of Virginia, concentrating in microbial ecology. Her dissertation research focused on studying spatial patterns in microbial communities and determining the important factors that control their distribution and activity. Her current projects include: (1) extending this work via laboratory and field microcosm experiments to manipulate spatial structure and determine the impact it may have on community stability; (2) studying microbial community "assembly rules" and the role of immigration in maintaining stable microbial activity; and (3) geomicrobiology and food web structure of submerged cave systems in Florida and Bermuda. She addresses these topics using laboratory experiments and comparative field studies, often incorporating techniques from other disciplines such as molecular microbiology, multivariate statistics, and analytical chemistry.