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Dr. Asim Zia is serving as a Professor of Public Policy and Computer Science in the Department of Community Development and Applied Economics, with a secondary appointment in the Department of Computer Science, at the University of Vermont. He is Director of the Institute for Environmental Diplomacy and Security (IEDS) and Co-Director of the Social Ecological Gaming and Simulation (SEGS) lab at the UVM.

His scholarship, research and public service activities have focused on advancing the interdisciplinary fields of complex systems modeling, computational policy analysis, governance network analysis, coupled natural and human systems and social ecological systems. He has served on scientific review committee of national socio-environmental synthesis center (SESYNC) (2014-17), acts as an academic editor for PLOS One (since 2013), and associate editor 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 (since 2011), a senior research fellow for the Earth System Governance project (since 2012) and a senior fellow for Global Change Impact Studies Center (2018-19).

In 2020, Asim Zia received Fulbright Global Scholar Award to Pakistan, Israel and Ecuador for leading a project on “Securing Clean Water in Transboundary Indus, Jordan and Amazon Basins through Science and Environmental Diplomacy”.



  • Zia, A. and Stuart Kauffman (2018) The Limits of Predictability in Predefining Phase Spaces of Dynamic Social Ecological Systems: “Command and Control” Versus “Complex Systems” Based Policy Design Approaches to Conserve Tropical Forests. Journal of Policy and Complex Systems 4(2). doi: 10.18278/jpcs.4.2.9
  • Coleman, S., Hurley, S., Rizzo, D., Koliba, C. and Zia, A. (2018) From the household to watershed: A cross-scale analysis of residential intention to adopt green stormwater infrastructure. Landscape and Urban Planning, 180, pp.195-206.
  • Beckage, Brian, Louis Gross, Katherine Lacasse, Eric Carr, Sara Metcalf, Jonathan Winter, Peter Howe, Nina Fefferman, Travis Franck, Asim Zia, Ann Kinzig, and Forrest Hoffman (2018) Linking models of human behavior and climate alters projected climate change Nature Climate Change 8: 79-84.
  • Rachel Schattman, Ernesto Mendez, Scott Merrill, Asim Zia (2017) A mixed methods approach to understanding farmer and technical service provider perceptions of climate change and adaptation in Vermont, United States. Agroecology and Sustainable Food Systems. Online first:
  • Sarah Coleman, Stephanie Hurley, Christopher Koliba, Asim Zia (2017) Crowdsourced delphis: Designing solutions to complex environmental problems with broad stakeholder participation. Global Environmental Change 45: 111-123.
  • A.R. Egan, W.S. Keeton, C.M. Danks, I. Soloviy, A. Zia (2017) Forest carbon projects in the Ukrainian Carpathians: an assessment of potential community impacts and benefits. Annals of Forest Research 60(1)
  • Zia, Asim, Arne Bomblies, Andrew W. Schroth, Christopher Koliba, Peter D.F. Isles, Yushiou Tsai, Ibrahim N. Mohammed, Gabriela Bucini, Patrick Clemins, Scott Turnbull, Morgan Rodgers, Ahmed Hamed, Brian Beckage, Jonathan Winter, Carol Adair, Gillian L. Galford, Donna Rizzo and Judith Van Houten (2016) Coupled impacts of climate and land use change across a river-lake continuum: insights from an integrated assessment model of Lake Champlain’s Missisquoi Basin, 2000-2040. Environmental Research Letters 11, Number 11. Available online at
  • Koliba, C., Zia, A., Schroth, A., Bomblies, A., Van Houten, J., and Rizzo, D. (2016) The Lake Champlain Basin as a Complex Adaptive System: Insights from the Research on Adaptation to Climate Change (“RACC”) Project. Vermont Journal of Environmental Law 17(4): 533-563
  • Conner, D., Miller, J., Zia, A., Wang, Q., and Darby, H. (2016) Conjoint Analysis of Farmers’ Response to Conservation Incentives. Sustainability 8: 684; doi 10.3390/su8070684 Koliba, C., Wiltshire, S., Scheinert, S., Turner, D., Zia, A., Campbell, E. (2016) The critical role of information sharing to the value proposition of a food systems network. Public Management Review. Online First. DOI: 10.1080/14719037.2016.1209235
  • Schulz, Anna, Asim Zia, Christopher Koliba (2017) Adapting Bridge Infrastructure to Climate Change: Institutionalizing Resilience in Intergovernmental Transportation Planning Processes in the Northeastern United States. Mitigation and Adaptation Strategies for Global Change 22(1): 175-198
  • Tsai, Yushiou, Asim Zia, Christopher Koliba, Justin Guilbert, Gabriela Bucini, Brian Beckage (2015). An Interactive Land Use Transition Agent-Based Model (ILUTABM): Endogenizing Human-Environment Interactions at Watershed Scales. Land Use Policy 49: 161-176.
  • Zia, A., Koliba, C. (2015) The Emergence of Attractors Under Multi-level Institutional Designs: Agent-Based Modeling of Intergovernmental Decision Making for Funding Transportation Projects. AI & Society: Knowledge, Culture and Communication: 30: 315-331. DOI 10.1007/s00146-013-0527-2
  • Hamed, Ahmed; Alexa Ayer; Eric Clark; Erin Irons; Grant Taylor; Asim Zia (2015) Measuring Climate Change on Twitter Using Google’s Algorithm: Perception and Events. International Journal of Web Information Systems: 11(4).
  • Zia, Asim, Courtney Hammond Wagner (2015) Mainstreaming Early Warning Systems in Development and Planning Processes: Multi-level implementation of Sendai Framework in Indus and Sahel. International Journal of Disaster Risk Science 6(2): 189-199. DOI 10.1007/s13753-015-0048-3
  • Zia, Asim, Christopher Koliba, Jack Meek, Anna Schulz (2015) Scale and Intensity of Collaboration as Determinants of Performance Management Gaps in Polycentric Governance Networks: Evidence from a National Survey of MPOs. Policy & Politics: Advancing Knowledge in Public and Social Policy 43(3): 367-390
  • Zia, A., Kauffman, S., Koliba, C., Beckage, B., Vattay, G., Bomblies, A. (2014) From the Habit of Control to Institutional Enablement: Re-envisioning the Governance of Social-Ecological Systems from the Perspective of Complexity Sciences. Complexity, Governance and Networks. 1(1): 79-88. DOI: 10.7564/14-CGN4
  • Zia, Asim, Bryan Norton, Sara Metcalf, Paul Hirsch, Bruce Hannon (2014) Spatial Discounting, Place Attachment and Environmental Concern: Toward an Ambit-Based Theory of Sense of Place. Journal of Environmental Psychology. 40: 283-295. DOI: 10.1016/j.jenvp.2014.08.001
  • Zia, A., Paul Hirsch, Alexander N. Songorwa, David R. Mutekanga, Sheila O’Connor, Thomas McShane, Pete Brosius, Bryan Norton (2011) Cross-Scale Value Trade-Offs in Managing Social-Ecological Systems: The Politics of Scale in Ruaha National Park, Tanzania. Ecology and Society 16(4):7.
  • Zia, A., Todd, A. M. (2010) Evaluating the Effects of Ideology on Public Understanding of Climate Change Science: How to Improve Communication Across Ideological Divides? Public Understanding of Science 19(6): 743-761.

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