Simon Nicholson

Co-Executive Director

Simon Nicholson, PhD, is an assistant professor and director of the Global Environmental Politics program in the School of International Service at American University. His work focuses on global environmental governance, global food politics, and the politics of emerging technologies.

Nicholson is co-editor (with Sikina Jinnah) of New Earth Politics (MIT Press, forthcoming Spring 2016), and (with Paul Wapner) of Global Environmental Politics: From Person to Planet (Paradigm Publishers, 2015).

His work on climate engineering is informed by a deep sense of concern about the lack of effective response to climate change coming from mainstream political and social processes. At the same time, prior work on the politics of technology tells him that promising technological responses to complex social problems can too easily go awry, or can fail to fulfill expectations, or can be repurposed for ill-conceived or nefarious ends, or can entrench the very dynamics that drive the problems to which the technologies are attempting to respond. He brings, in other words, cautious optimism to the climate engineering conversation, with emphasis on “cautious.”

Some Recent and Forthcoming Publications

See also: “Climate Geoengineering: Coming Soon to a Planet Near You,” talk for TEDx American University, May 24, 2014.