Cal Poly Professor Named One of the World’s Most Impactful Scientific Researchers

SAN LUIS OBISPO — The head of Cal Poly’s Natural Resources Management and Environmental Sciences Department in the College of Agriculture, Food and Environmental Sciences has been named to the 2017 list of Highly Cited Researchers. 

Professor Gregory Brown was included on the annual list produced by Clarivate Analytics, which recognizes the most frequently cited researchers spanning the globe in 21 fields of the sciences and social sciences, representing leading researchers whose papers have supported, influenced, inspired, and challenged others.

“I am honored to be named to the list recognizing some of the most forward-thinking scientists in the field,” Brown said. “Cal Poly is known for its high-quality undergraduate education across all disciplines. This international recognition confirms the university’s increasing impact in applied research and scholarship as well.”

Brown is the first Cal Poly professor to be named to the list and the only professor from the California State University system to be included. He joined Cal Poly’s Natural Resources Management and Environmental Sciences Department in 2016, after serving academic leadership positions at the University of Queensland, Central Washington University, University of South Australia, Alaska Pacific University, and Green Mountain College in Vermont.

Brown’s current research is focused on methods to enhance and expand public involvement in land use planning and management by integrating social spatial information using “Public Participation Geographic Information Systems” (PPGIS). These methods allow people to identify important places and preferences for acceptable land uses that will improve their quality of life.

In August, under Brown’s leadership, Cal Poly hosted an international panel of renowned scholars on participatory mapping for a three-day colloquium featuring topics such as land and marine planning and management, urban and regional planning, rural development, indigenous rights, and mapping technology.

The 2017 Highly Cited Researchers list honors approximately 3,300 scientists who are considered to be among the most highly influential in the world.

Researchers were selected based on the number of citations for papers published over an 11-year period from January 2005 to December 2015 in science and social sciences journals indexed in the Web of Science Core Collection. The survey defined highly cited papers as those ranking in the top 1 percent most cited for their field and year of publication. The 2017 Highly Cited Researchers list can be viewed at

Professor Gregory Brown.

About Cal Poly’s College of Agriculture, Food and Environmental Sciences
Cal Poly is a nationally ranked, comprehensive polytechnic university. The university’s College of Agriculture, Food and Environmental Sciences ( is comprised of expert faculty members who take pride in their ability to transform academically motivated students into innovative professionals ready to solve the complex challenges associated with feeding the world in sustainable ways. Students have access to state-of-the-art laboratories, including ranch land, orchards, vineyards and forests, all of which provide the basis for Cal Poly’s Learn by Doing methodology. It is the fifth-largest college of agriculture in the country, with 4,000 undergraduate students.

Contact: AnnMarie Cornejo

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