Robert Costanza

Robert Costanza

Distinguished University Professor of Sustainability - Portland State University

Dr. Robert Costanza is Distinguished University Professor of Sustainability at the Institute for Sustainable Solutions, Portland State University. Before moving to PSU in September 2010, he was the Gund Professor of Ecological Economics and founding director of the Gund Institute for Ecological Economics at the University of Vermont.

Before Vermont, he was on the faculty at Maryland University and Louisiana State University and was a visiting scientist at the Beijer Institute in Sweden and the Illinois Natural History Survey. Dr. Costanza is also currently a Distinguished Research Fellow at Ecological Economics Research Center New Zealand (EERNZ), Massey University, Palmerston North, New Zealand; a Senior Fellow at the National Council on Science and the Environment, Washington, DC; and a Senior Fellow at the Stockholm Resilience Center, Stockholm, Sweden.

Dr. Costanza received BA and MA degrees in architecture and a Ph.D. in environmental engineering sciences  from the University of Florida. His transdisciplinary research integrates the study of humans and the rest of nature to address research, policy, and management issues at multiple time and space scales, from small watersheds to the global system. Dr. Costanza is co-founder and past president of the International Society for Ecological Economics and was chief editor of the society’s journal, Ecological Economics, from its inception in 1989 until 2002. He is founding co-editor (with Karin Limburg and Ida Kubiszewski) of Reviews in Ecological Economics. He currently serves on the editorial board of ten other international academic journals and is also founding editor-in-chief of Solutions(, a new hybrid academic/popular journal. His awards include a Kellogg National Fellowship, the Society for Conservation Biology Distinguished Achievement Award, a Pew Scholarship in Conservation and the Environment, the Kenneth Boulding Memorial Award for Outstanding Contributions in Ecological Economics, and honorary doctorates from Stockholm University and the Ecole Normale Supérieure de Lyon.

Dr. Costanza is the author or co-author of over five hundred scientific papers and twenty-two books. His work has been cited in more than ten thousand scientific articles, and he has been named one of ISI’s Highly Cited Researchers since 2004. More than two hundred interviews and reports on his work have appeared in various popular media. His areas of specialty include transdisciplinary integration, systems ecology, ecological economics, landscape ecology, ecological modeling, ecological design, energy analysis, environmental policy, social traps, incentive structures, and institutions.

Contributions to Humans & Nature:

Noteworthy Links:
  • Solutions Journal
    Browse and read articles about building a more sustainable world in Solutions, a journal founded by Robert Costanza.
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