Gund Fellow, Professor, Community Development and Applied Economics

Asim Zia has made substantive scientific and policy contributions towards advancing the Sustainability and Resilience of Human Environmental Systems. He is an internationally known leader in developing computational models of Social Ecological Systems, Complex Adaptive Systems and Governance Networks. Foresight generated from these computational models is used widely to enable early warnings of systemic risks, design early actions and anticipatory policies, configure governance systems and implement adaptive management. He has published 80 journal articles, 20 book chapters and 3 books, totaling 103 peer-reviewed publications. His articles have appeared in journals such as Nature Climate Change, Environmental Research Letters, Global Environmental Change, Ecology and Society, Public Understanding of Science, Mitigation and Adaptation Strategies for Global Change, Journal of Artificial Societies and Social Simulation, PLOS One, Energy Policy, Journal of Environmental Psychology, Journal of Environmental Management, Conservation Biology and Sustainability.

He has served as a Principal Investigator, Co-Principal Investigator, or Senior Personnel on 22 research grants worth more than $68 Million. Grant funds have been secured from National Science Foundation, McArthur Foundation, US Department of Transportation, US Department of Defense, US Department of Commerce and US Department of Agriculture.  He has recently served a 3-year term on scientific review committee of the national socio-environmental synthesis center (SESYNC), acting as an academic editor for PLOS One since 2014, and serving a 3-year term as co-editor-in-chief of Complexity, Governance and Networks . He has a Ph.D. in Public Policy from the Georgia Institute of Technology; recipient of 2004-2005 best dissertation award from the Association for Public Policy Analysis and Management, a post-doctoral fellowship from the National Center for Atmospheric Research (2004-2006), a fellow at the Gund Institute for Environment and a senior research fellow for the Earth System Governance project. He was recently appointed as a Fulbright Global Scholar (2021-2023) to lead a project on “Securing Clean Water in Transboundary Indus, Jordan and Amazon Basins through Science and Environmental Diplomacy.”



  • Zia, A., Schroth, A.W., Hecht, J.S., Isles, P., Clemins, P.J., Turnbull, S., Bitterman, P., Tsai, Y., Mohammed, I.N., Bucini, G. and Doran, E.M., 2022. Climate Change‐Legacy Phosphorus Synergy Hinders Lake Response to Aggressive Water Policy Targets. Earth's Future, 10(5), p.e2021EF002234.
  • Beckage, B., Gross, L.J., Lacasse, K., Carr, E., Metcalf, S.S., Winter, J.M., Howe, P.D., Fefferman, N., Franck, T., Zia, A. and Kinzig, A., 2018. Linking models of human behaviour and climate alters projected climate change. Nature Climate Change, 8(1), pp.79-84. Available from
  • Zia A, Wagner C. Mainstreaming Early Warning Systems in Development and Planning Processes: Multilevel Implementation of Sendai Framework in Indus and Sahel. International Journal of Disaster Risk Science. 2015; 6(2):189-199.
  • Coleman, S., Hurley, S., Koliba, C. and Zia, A., 2017. Crowdsourced Delphis: Designing solutions to complex environmental problems with broad stakeholder participation. Global Environmental Change, 45, pp.111-123. Available from
  • Tsai, Y., Zia, A., Koliba, C., Bucini, G., Guilbert, J. and Beckage, B., 2015. An interactive land use transition agent-based model (ILUTABM): Endogenizing human-environment interactions in the Western Missisquoi Watershed. Land use policy, 49, pp.161-176.  DOI: 10.1016/j.landusepol.2015.07.008
  • Zia, A., 2013. Post-Kyoto climate governance: Confronting the politics of scale, ideology and knowledge. Routledge.

Areas of Expertise and/or Research

Environmental policy, social ecological systems, coupled natural and human systems, integrated assessment models, adaptive management


  • PhD, Public Policy, Georgia Institute of Technology
  • MA, Philosophy, University of the Punjab
  • BA, Philosophy, University of the Punjab


  • 802-656-4695