Nico M. Franz
Associate Professor & Curator of Insects
Synopsis - My research program concentrates on the systematics and evolutionary history of weevils (Coleoptera: Curculionoidea), a megadiverse and notoriously intractable lineage of plant feeding beetles estimated to include some 220,000 species worldwide. Much of my field- and morphology-based work has focused on Neotropical radiations; including descriptions of several dozens of new taxa and a revised tribal classification of acalyptine flower weevils. I presently lead a project that will produce a phylogenetic redefinition and e-monograph of the Exophthalmus genus complex, with implications for Caribbean and Neotropical mainland biogeography.
On the more conceptual side, I am interested in improving the linkage between numerous aspects of traditional taxonomic practice and ontology-driven approaches to data integration and reasoning.
At the School of Life Sciences, I am in charge of curating the Frank Hasbrouck Insect Collection and serve as Associate Director for Revisions and Monography of the International Institute for Species Exploration.
Representative Publications (complete list)
Franz, N. M. 2012. Phylogenetic reassessment of the Exophthalmus genus complex (Curculionidae: Entiminae: Eustylini, Geonemini). Zoological Journal of the Linnean Society 164: 510-557.
Girón, J. C. & N. M. Franz. 2010. Revision, phylogeny, and historical biogeography of the genus Apodrosus Marshall, 1922 (Coleoptera: Curculionidae: Entiminae). Insect Systematics & Evolution 41: 339-414.
Franz, N. M. & M. S. Engel. 2010. Can higher-level phylogenies of weevils explain their evolutionary success? A critical review. Systematic Entomology 35: 597-606.
Franz, N. M. & D. Thau. 2010. Biological taxonomy and ontology development: scope and limitations. Biodiversity Informatics 7: 45-66.
Franz, N. M. 2010. Revision and phylogeny of the genus Apotomoderes Dejean (Coleoptera: Curculionidae: Entiminae). ZooKeys 49: 33-75.
Franz, N. M. & R. K. Peet. 2009. Towards a language for mapping relationships among taxonomic concepts. Systematics and Biodiversity 7: 5-20.
Franz, N. M. 2008. Revision, phylogeny, and natural history of Cotithene Voss (Coleoptera: Curculionidae). Zootaxa 1782: 1-33.
Franz, N. M. 2006. Towards a phylogenetic system of derelomine flower weevils (Coleoptera: Curculionidae). Systematic Entomology 31: 220-287.
Franz, N. M. 2005. Outline of an explanatory account of cladistic practice. Biology & Philosophy 20: 489-515.
Franz, N. M. 2003. Systematics of Cyclanthura, a new genus of Derelomini (Coleoptera: Curculionidae). Insect Systematics & Evolution 34: 153-198.