The ESA Panel on Vegetation Classification was constituted in 1994 by the Ecological Society of America to support and facilitate the creation of standardized, scientifically credible North American vegetation classification. In 2009, the Panel was officially granted standing committee status by the governing board.

Throughout the years, many vegetation ecologists have served on the Panel.  A list of past and present members is available at the link below:

ESA Panel Member History


U.S. National Vegetation Classification System Partnership

In April 1999, the Panel formalized a Memorandum of Understanding with The Nature Conservancy/NatureServe and the U.S. Geological Survey, on behalf of the National Biological Information Infrastructure and the U.S. Federal Geographic Data Committee, for the purpose of forming a partnership to develop, implement, and maintain the National Vegetation Classification (NVC) system. Currently we are working on a new Memorandum to reflect the progress made and the evolution in the partnership centered on the National Vegetation Classification.


The ESA Vegetation Classification Panel’s activities have been funded by the U.S. Forest Service, the former National Biological Service (now the Biological Resources Division of the U.S. Geological Survey), the Gap Analysis Program, the Federal Geographic Data Committee, the Bureau of Land Management, the Environmental Protection Agency, the National Science Foundation, and the Army Environmental Policy Institute. The ESA Science Office provides support to the ESA Panel on Vegetation Classification.