Stefanie Herrmann

About Stefanie Herrmann

I am a geographer pursuing interdisciplinary research on human-environment relationships in drylands, in particular in pastoral and agricultural societies of the developing world. Most of my research has been in the semiarid Sahel of West Africa, where I have worked on land degradation and land cover dynamics at various scales and from various perspectives, ranging from regional-scale remote sensing to studying the perspectives of local populations in the field.


Special Issue on Earth Observations for Ecosystem Resilience now open:

Areas of Study

Remote sensing of land use and land cover change

Land degradation/desertification

Local environmental knowledge

Pastoral livelihoods

International development

Regional focus: West Africa 

Selected Publications

Link to my Google Scholar profile: 

Herrmann, S., Diouf, A.A. and Sall, I. (2019): Beyond Bioproductivity: Engaging Local Perspectives in Land Degradation Monitoring and Assessment. Journal of Arid Environments 

Brandt, M., Hiernaux, P., Rasmussen, K., Tucker, C.J., Wigneron, J.-P., Diouf, A.A., Herrmann, S., Zhang, W., Kergoat, L., Mbow, C, Abel, C., Auda, Y. and Fensholt, R. (2019): Changes in rainfall distribution promote woody foliage production in the Sahel. Communications Biology. doi:10.1038/s42003-019-0383-9

Brandt, M., Rasmussen, K., Hiernaux, P., Herrmann, S., Tucker, C.J., Tong, X., Tian, F., Mertz, O., Kergoat, L., Mbow, C., David, J., Melocik, K., Dendoncker, M., Vincke, C. and Fensholt, R. (2018): Reduction of tree cover in West African woodlands and promotion in semi-arid farmlands. Nature Geoscience. doi:10.1038/s41561-018-0092-x

Tong, X., Brandt, M., Hiernaux, P., Herrmann, S.M., Tian, F., Prishchepov, A. and Fensholt, R. (2017): Revisiting the coupling between NDVI trends and cropland changes in the Sahel drylands: A case study in western Niger. Remote Sensing of Environment 191, pp. 286-296.

Herrmann, S.M., Didan, K., Barreto Munoz, A., Crimmins, M. (2016): Divergent responses of vegetation productivity in Southwestern US ecosystems to dry and wet years at different elevations. Environmental Research Letters 11, doi: 10.1088/1748-9326/11/12/124005

Herrmann, S.M. and Sop, T. (2016): “The Map is not the Territory. How Satellite Remote Sensing and Ground Evidence have (Re-)Shaped the Image of Sahelian Desertification” – in: Behnke, R. and Mortimore, M. (eds.) The End of Desertification? Disputing Environmental Change in the Drylands. Berlin, Heidelberg: Springer (Earth System Science Series), pp. 117-145.

CILSS (Comité permanent Inter-Etats de Lutte contre la Sécheresse dans le Sahel) (2016): Landscapes of West Africa. A Window on a Changing World. U.S. Geological Survey EROS, 47914 252nd St, Garretson, SD57030, United States, 236 pages. [S.M. Herrmann in the production team] 

Herrmann, S.M., Sall, I., Sy, O. (2014): People and Pixels in the Sahel – a Study Linking Coarse-Resolution Remote Sensing Observations to Land Users' Perceptions of their Changing Environment in Senegal. Ecology and Society 19, doi: 10.5751/ES-06710-190329

Herrmann, S.M., Wickhorst, A.J. and Marsh, S.E. (2013): Estimation of Tree Cover in an Agricultural Parkland of Senegal Using Rule-Based Regression Tree Modeling. Remote Sensing 5, pp. 4900-4918.

Herrmann, S.M. and Tappan, G.G. (2013): Vegetation Impoverishment Despite Greening: A Case Study from Central Senegal. Journal of Arid Environments 90, pp. 55-66.

Herrmann, S.M. and Mohr, K.I. (2011): A Continental-Scale Classification of Rainfall Seasonality Regimes in Africa Based on Gridded Precipitation and Land Surface Temperature Products. Journal of Applied Meteorology and Climatology 50, pp. 2504-2513

Propastin, P., Kappas, M.W., Herrmann, S.M. and Tucker, C.J. (2011): Modified light use efficiency model for assessment of carbon sequestration in grasslands of Kazakhstan: combining ground biomass data and remote-sensing. International Journal of Remote Sensing 33, pp. 1465-1487.

Buenemann, M., Martius, C., Jones, J.W., Herrmann, S.M., Klein, D., Mulligan, M., Reed, M.S., Winslow, M., Washington-Allen, R.A., Lal, R. and Ojima, D. (2011): Integrative geospatial approaches for monitoring and assessing the sustainability of land management: rationale, potentials, and characteristics. Land Degradation and Development  22, pp. 226-239.

Hutchinson, C.F. and Herrmann, S.M. (2007): The Future of Arid Lands – Revisited. A Review of 50 Years of Drylands Research. UNESCO Publishing/Springer, 238 pages

Van Leeuwen, W.J.D., Orr, B.J., Marsh, S.E. and Herrmann, S.M. (2006): Multi-Sensor NDVI Data Continuity: Uncertainties and Implications for Vegetation Monitoring. Remote Sensing of Environment 100, pp. 67-81.

Herrmann, S.M. (lead author) et al. (2006): “Chapter 6: Desert Outlook and Options for Action” – in: E. Ezcurra (ed.): Global Environmental Outlook for World Deserts. UNEP: Earthprint, pp.111-139.

Herrmann, S.M. and Hutchinson, C.F. (2006): “The Scientific Basis: Linkages between Land Degradation, Drought and Desertification.” – in: Johnson, P.M., Mayrand, K. and Paquin, M. (eds.): Governing Global Desertification; Linking Environmental Degradation, Poverty and Participation. Aldershot: Ashgate, pp. 11-25. 

Herrmann, S.M., Anyamba, A. and Tucker, C.J. (2005): Recent Trends in Vegetation Dynamics in the African Sahel and their Relationship to Climate. Global Environmental Change 15, pp. 394-404.

Herrmann, S.M. and Hutchinson, C.F. (2005): The Changing Contexts of the Desertification Debate. Journal of Arid Environments 63, pp. 538-555.

Hutchinson, C.F., Herrmann, S.M., Maukonen, T. and Weber, J. (2005): Introduction: The “Greening” of the Sahel [Editorial]. Journal of Arid Environments 63, pp. 535-537. 

Stefanie Herrmann's picture

Contact Information

Stefanie Herrmann
Associate Research Scientist


PhD Arid Lands Resource Sciences, University of Arizona, 2006

MA Geography, Universität Würzburg, 2001

BA Geography, Université de Caen, 1998

Courses Taught

GEOG 330  Introduction to Remote Sensing   Fall 2017

RNR 696A  Remote Sensing of Coupled Human-Environment Systems   Spring 2018