Faculty Overview

Howard N. Apsan

Adjunct Professor of International and Public Affairs
University Director, Environmental Health Safety and Risk Management, The City University of New York

BA, MA, Brooklyn College, 1979; M.Phil., Columbia University, 1981; PhD, 1985.

Adjunct Professor of Public Affairs at SIPA since 1986; University Director, Environmental Health Safety and Risk Management, at CUNY since 2003; environmental and management consulting for commercial, industrial, and government clients, since 1986; policy and management positions at New York City’s Department of Sanitation, Board of Education, and Mayor’s Office, prior to 1986. His research and consulting interests include Environmental Health and Safety, Risk Management and Business Continuity, Sustainability and LEED, and Management and Organizational leadership. He is a LEED Accredited Professional, a member of the Editorial Board of Environmental Quality Management, and writes and lectures regularly.

Summer – ENVP U9229 Workshop in Applied Earth Systems Management I
Fall – ENVP U6234 Sustainability Management


Benjamin C. Bostick

Adjunct Associate Professor of International and Public Affairs    Lamont Associate Research Professor in the Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory

BA, MA, University of Idaho, 1995; M.S. University of Idaho, 1997; Ph.D. Stanford University, 2002.

Adjunct Associate Professor of Public Affairs at SIPA since 2013; Lamont Associate Research Professor at LDEO since 2009, Assistant Professor of Earth Sciences and Chemistry at Dartmouth College prior to 2009. Representative to National User Facility Organization (NUFO) for Synchrotron-Related Research since 2012. His research and consulting interests include Soil and Aqueous Geochemistry, Mineralogy, Tropical Soils and Soil Fertility, Environmental Health, and Environmental Remediation.

Summer – ENVP U6220 Environmental Chemistry


Robert A. Cook, V.M.D., M.P.A.

Adjunct Assistant Professor, School of International and Public Affairs; Lecturer, School of Professional Studies; Senior Science Advisor, The Mayday Fund

BS, Microbiology and Public Health, Michigan State University 1976; VMD, University of Pennsylvania School of Veterinary Medicine 1980, Internship in Small Animal Medicine and Surgery, Animal Medical Center 1981; Residency in Zoological Medicine, Wildlife Conservation Society 1987; MPA, School of International and Public Affairs, Columbia University 2002.

Dr. Bob Cook is a veterinarian who has spent his career in wildlife health, conservation, academia and foundation philanthropy. Presently he works as the Senior Science Advisor at the Mayday Fund, a foundation dedicated to the alleviation of human pain.  Prior to that he served as Program Director for Conservation and Basic Medical Research at the Helmsley Charitable Trust.  For a number of years, he worked for the Wildlife Conservation Society serving as the Chief Veterinarian and then as the General Director. In this role he led a team responsible for the operations of 5 New York zoological parks including the Central Park, Queens and Prospect Parks Zoos, the New York Aquarium and the Bronx Zoo. He has worked extensively in rural international settings and on global policy issues focused on the health of people, domestic animals, and wildlife. His work with Helmsley included support of community-based conservation, protected area establishment and management, biodiversity, marine conservation, food security, environmental justice and the sustainability of natural resources. Dr. Cook has served as an Adjunct Assistant Professor at SIPA from 2004 to 2007 and then from 2013 to present. He has also served as a Lecturer in the School of Professional studies in 2012 and then again beginning in 2017.  


Summer – ENVP U9229 Workshop in Applied Earth Systems Management I

Fall & Spring- SUMA PS5200 Integrative Capstone Workshop


Nancy Degnan

Adjunct Associate Professor of International and Public Affairs

MPA, Columbia University; Ph.D., Urban Planning, Columbia University.

Nancy served as Assistant Dean at SIPA and as the Associate Director at the School of Architecture, Planning and Preservation.  She is currently the Executive Director of the Center for Environmental Research and Conservation (CERC).  At CERC, Dr. Degnan spearheads initiatives and programming in education, training and applied research STEM (science, technology, engineering and math). Her research and writing has focused on community-based initiatives in education, sustainable development and redevelopment, as well as microfinance and enterprise development. She is also a member of Columbia Business School’s Deming Board, Chazen Institute.

Spring –  ENVP U9232 Workshop in Applied Earth System Policy


Adela J. Gondek

Lecturer, Department of Ecology, Evolution and Environmental Biology

BA, Goucher College; PhD, Harvard University, Department of Government

Lecturer and Adjunct Professor, Columbia University, 1989-present, in the fields of public and environmental ethics in programs of the School of International and Public Affairs, the School of Professional Studies, and the Earth Institute. Previously taught American political philosophy in Columbia’s Political Science Department and at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor. Associate of the Centre for Business and Public Sector Ethics in Cambridge, England. Visiting Scholar in Ethics, Hong Kong University of Science and Technology, 2012.  Served earlier as a Legislative Aide in the Massachusetts State Senate. Research interests include environmental and sustainability ethics, public ethics, cross-sector corruption, organizational leadership and management, and transformative learning.


Fall –  ENVP U6225 Ethics, Values, and Justice


 Selcuk Eren

Adjunct Associate Professor, School of International and Public Affairs

Dr. Eren is a senior economist at New York City Comptroller’s Office. At the Comptroller’s Office, he is responsible for conducting research and providing analysis of significant New York City economic issues with particular attention to their fiscal and policy implications as well as forecasting New York City’s economic outlook. His current research focuses on variety of public policy issues affecting New York City residents including homelessness reduction initiatives, local immigration policies, aging population of the City and its challenges among others. He has published papers and reports on economic well-being, income and wealth inequality, housing markets, migration and immigration among others. Previously he worked as a supervising analyst at New York City Office of Management and Budget (OMB), research scholar at Levy Economics Institute of Bard College and a visiting assistant professor at Hamilton College.  

PhD, Economics, Stony Brook University

ENVP U8213 Microeconomics & Policy Analysis II
ENVP U6310 Quantitative Techniques and Systems Analysis in Policymaking and Management I
ENVP U6230 Economics of Sustainable Development


Adrian Hill

Lecturer, School of International and Public Affairs

Adrian Hill is Executive Director for University Research Planning and Development at Columbia, where she is responsible for early-stage planning and implementation for University-wide research initiatives. Her portfolio is focused on science, medical and engineering with projects such as the Mortimer B. Zuckerman Mind Brain Behavior Institute, the Precision Medicine Initiative and Climate Response. She manages the relationship with the University’s representatives in Washington, DC, with the goal of protecting and increasing competitive research funding for the academic community.

Adrian has structured and led strategic planning processes for the Columbia Science Initiative, the Fu Foundation School of Engineering and Applied Science, and the Earth Institute, in collaboration with respective deans. She is deeply interested in facilitating interdisciplinary faculty recruitments and interschool collaborations. Adrian serves is an adviser to the Strategic Initiative at the Bank Street School for Children and previously served as chair  of the board for the Purple Circle Early Childhood Program. She is an MPA-ESP alumna.

MPA in Environmental Science and Policy, Columbia University, 2005
BA in Political Science, Barnard College, 2004

ENVP U9230 Workshop in Applied Earth Systems Management II
ENVP U9232 Workshop in Applied Earth Systems Policy Analysis


Rebecca Myers Koike

Adjunct Associate Professor, School of International and Public Affairs

Rebecca Myers Koike, an MPA-ESP alum,  is the Senior Director of Operational Planning and Services at the American Museum of Natural History in New York City. Before joining AMNH, Koike worked as a senior budget analyst at the New York City Office of Management and Budget, overseeing portions of the capital and operating budgets of the Department of Parks and Recreation.


MPA, Environmental Sciences and Policy Program, Columbia University, 2007; 
BA, Environmental Sciences and Policy, Duke University.

ENVP U8201 Financial Management


Dong Guo

Adjunct Assistant Professor of International and Public Affairs; Associate Research Scholar in the Earth Institute

BS, Economics, University College London 2006; MPA, Columbia University 2007; Ph.D., Economics and Education, Teachers College, Columbia University, 2013

Dong is the Director of the Earth Institute China Initiative at Columbia University. Dr. Guo also serves as the Associate Director of the Research Program on Sustainability Policy and Management at Columbia University’s Earth Institute, where he is an associate research scholar. Dr. Guo’s research interests include labor economics, sustainable development, sustainability education, sustainability metrics, and environmental policy, and he has conducted significant research on China, including evaluation of sustainability capacity building programs and impact of environmental regulation on jobs. He is currently leading a research project on urban sustainability metrics with the China Center on International Economic Exchanges currently and co-writing a book on the role of finance in advancing sustainability.

Fall – ENVP U8213 Economics for Environmental Policy I


Lloyd Kass, MPA, CEM

Adjunct Associate Professor

BS, Brandeis University 1992; MPA, Columbia University 1998.

Lloyd Kass has been working professionally at the intersection of public policy and the clean energy industry for more than 20 years, serving in New York City and State government, and nationally as a consultant and business developer in energy efficiency and providing energy services to utilities. Mr. Kass joined Lime Energy in 2015, and he serves as Vice President for Policy and Business Development, driving Lime’s efforts to expand its unique energy efficiency business directed at retrofits for small and mid-sized commercial buildings.  Mr. Kass previously worked with New York Governor Andrew M. Cuomo’s energy team at the New York Power Authority. He previously launched and led the New York regional office of Willdan Energy Solutions, and he built a $30M-per-year business over 4 years.  Throughout New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s first two terms in office, Mr. Kass worked for the New York City Housing Authority, serving in key management roles in building rehabilitation efforts. Later, he directed energy procurement and energy management at NYCHA for its 3,000 public housing buildings serving 180,000 families. Mr. Kass has served as Adjunct Associate Professor at Columbia since 2009, instructing graduate students in public administration and sustainability policy.

Fall – ENVP U9230 Workshop in Applied Earth Systems Management II


Kytt MacManus

Adjunct Professor, School of International and Public Affairs
Senior Research Associate/Geographic Information Specialist
Center for International Earth Science Information Network (CIESIN)

BA, Political Science, Northeastern University; MS in Environmental Policy, Bard Center for Environmental Policy. The Australian National Internship Program, 2005.

Kytt has substantial experience with global dataset development for the NASA Socio-economic Data and Applications Center (SEDAC). Experienced web-GIS application developer. Python programmer. His research interests include the development of data driven web applications for decision support; the use of global population and housing census; and the use of Python for Scientific Computing.

Spring – ENVP U6224 Environmental Data Analysis


Michael P. Musso

Adjunct Lecturer, School of International and Public Affairs, Columbia University
Environmental Health Sciences, Mailman School of Public Health

BS, Civil Engineering, Villanova University, 1991; M.S., Environmental Engineering Rutgers University, New Brunswick, 1996; M.P.H., Environmental Health Science, Mailman School of Public Health, Columbia University, 2007

Lecturer, Mailman School of Public Health (Risk Assessment) 2009 – present; Lecturer, for topic’s course at MSPH: Arsenic’s cost-benefit of treatment and risk reduction (2001, 2002, 2009); Licensed Professional Engineer, State of New York; Senior Project Engineer, HDR Engineering, Inc. 1999 to present. Main areas of expertise include the assessment and characterization of contaminated sites and chemical impacts; regulatory compliance; assessing chemical exposures and risks to human health and the environment; and developing approaches for risk reduction and clean-ups at contaminated, Brownfields, hazardous waste and other site settings. Previous work experience includes: Intern – NYCDOH (Lead Poisoning and Prevention, 1997; Disease Surveillance, 1998); Environmental Engineer, Dresdner Robin Environmental Management, Inc. 1994-1997; Engineering Associate, Environ Corporation, 1991 – 1994.

Summer – ENVP U6221 Risk Assessment and Environmental Toxicology


Matthew I. Palmer

Adjunct Assistant Professor, School of International and Public Affairs, Columbia University
Lecturer and Director of Undergraduate Studies, Department of Ecology, Evolution, and Environmental Biology, Columbia University

BS, Cornell University 1996; PhD Rutgers University 2005


In addition to teaching, research, and advising at Columbia, Dr. Palmer advises the US Fish and Wildlife Service, NYC Parks, NY State DEC, NJ DEP, and several NGOs on conservation, restoration, and ecological management issues. His research interests are primarily in plant community ecology, with emphases on conservation, restoration, and ecosystem function.

Summer – ENVP u6111 Principles of Ecology, ENVP u6112 Urban Ecology, ENVP u9229 Workshop in Applied Earth Systems Management I
Fall – ENVP U9230 Workshop in Applied Earth Systems Management II


Michael J. Puma

Adjunct Assistant Professor, International and Public Affairs
Associate Research Scientist, Center for Climate Systems Research, Columbia University
Technical Advisor on Climate Change Information, United Nations Development Programme

BS, Columbia University (SEAS), 1998; MIA, Columbia University (SIPA), 1999; MA, Princeton University, 2003; PhD, Princeton University, 2006

Dr. Michael Puma is Director of the Center for Climate Systems Research, part of Columbia University’s Earth Institute with over 25 scientists, staff associates, and administrators working closely with the NASA Goddard Institute for Space Studies on earth science and climate impacts research. His research efforts are focused on global food security, especially the exploration of how susceptible the global network of food trade is to natural (e.g., megadroughts, volcanic eruptions) and man-made (e.g., wars, trade restrictions) disturbances. He is particularly interested in understanding the limits to predictability for our water and food systems, as we need fundamentally different approaches for problems that are sensitive to non-predictable extremes. Dr. Puma teaches courses at Columbia University on hydrology and water governance.

Summer – ENVP U6116 Hydrology


Louise Rosen

Lecturer of International and Public Affairs
Deputy Vice President of Strategic Engagement at Columbia University

B.S. in Economic and Political Geography, the London School of Economics; M.S. in Journalism, Columbia University

Louise serves as the Deputy Vice President of Strategic Engagement at Columbia University. Working closely with the Executive Vice President of Alumni and Development she is responsible for developing campaign programming, creating partnerships with outside organizations, and developing community wide programs to foster awareness of and support for university endeavors. Prior to joining the Office of Alumni and Development, she spent eleven years at Columbia’s Earth Institute; most recently as Director of the Office of Academic and Research Programs responsible for incubating new education and research programs wherein she assisted with the development of seven new environmental and sustainable development degree programs overseeing all areas of their marketing and communications. Her background in media and journalism and she has written for several publications including Newsweek.com, Forbes magazine, Upside Today, Fortune Small Business, Vogue and The New York Times.

Summer – ENVP U9229 Workshop in Applied Earth Systems Management I
Fall – ENVP U9230 Workshop in Applied Earth Systems Management I
Spring – ENVP U9232 Workshop in Applied Earth Systems Policy Analysis


Park Williams

Lamont Assistant Research Professor, School of International and Public Affairs

Dr. Williams is a bioclimatologist whose research straddles the fields of climatology and ecology. He is especially interested in the climatological causes and the ecological consequences of drought. His research aims to improve understanding of drought and its effects on terrestrial systems, including forests, the carbon cycle, agriculture, and humanity. His ultimate goal is to advance scientific knowledge in ways that are relevant to policy makers and future scientific endeavors, and also interesting to the public and other scientists.

BS Earth & Environmental Sciences, University of California – Irvine, 2003; MA Geography, University of California – Santa Barbara, 2006; PhD Geography, University of California – Santa Barbara, 2009; Postdoctoral Researcher, University of California – Santa Barbara, 2010-2011; Postdoctoral Researcher, Los Alamos National Laboratory, Los Alamos, NM 2011-2013

ENVP U6115 Climatology


Sara Tjossem

Associate Director for Curriculum, MPA in Environmental Science and Policy
Senior Lecturer, School of International and Public Affairs, Columbia University

BA Biology, Swarthmore College, 1983; MS Ecology Cornell University, 1990; Ph.D., History of Science, Cornell University, 1994. Senior Lecturer & Researcher, Columbia University, 2003-present; Lecturer, University of Washington, 1998-2003; Assistant Director, Institute for Social, Economic, and Ecological Sustainability, University of Minnesota, 1996-1998; Lecture, University of Minnesota, 1995-1998. Tjossem’s teaching and research interests are on the intersection of science and society, the history of biology, particularly 20th century; history of ecology and agriculture; marine science, and development of environmental movements.

Spring – ENVP U9232 Workshop in Applied Earth Systems Policy Analysis