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Andrew Pattison

Assistant Professor of Environmental Studies, Colgate University
Areas of Expertise:
  • Climate Change
  • Energy
  • Environment & Energy

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About Andrew

Pattison's research and teaching interests include environmental and public policy, subnational sustainability and climate action planning, climate and energy politics, policy process theories, the role of science and technical information in policymaking, and issues of urban social equity. He endeavors to integrate community-based research into his classes whenever possible. Previously, he has worked as a climate planning consultant with communities and organizations, and as a sustainability director for the state of Colorado. Pattison has also served in City Council and Governor appointed positions in local government, and multiple NGO governing boards related to sustainability and environmental policy, affordable housing and civic engagement.

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In the News

Andrew Pattison quoted on labor unions and Trump's presidential candidacy in Colleen Cason, "State of the Unions at Play in Politics" Ventura County Star, April 2, 2016.
Andrew Pattison quoted on sustainability graduate programs in Henry Fountain, "Sustainability Comes of Age" The New York Times, December 29, 2009.
Interview on the drought in CaliforniaAndrew Pattison, California Lutheran University Magazine, November 5, 2014.
"Butterflies vs. Dragons - Lessons in Leadership," Andrew Pattison, Interview with Mark Sylvester, 805 Connect, January 18, 2016.
Andrew Pattison quoted on affordable housing and sustainable communities in Amanda Covarrubias, "Ventura Affordable Housing Residents Want Walking, Biking Opportunities" Ventura County Star, June 25, 2016.
Andrew Pattison quoted on his community-based investigation into environmental issues class in Amy Neff Roth, "Colgate, Community Bring Climate Issue to Local Level" Observer-Dispatch, August 6, 2017.
"The Nexus of Climate Change and Affordable Housing," Andrew Pattison (with Nicholas Birck), Ventura County Star, December 5, 2015.
"Expand Public-Private Partnerships to Increase Affordable Housing," Andrew Pattison, Pacific Coast Business Times, January 22, 2016.


"Equitable Local Climate Action Planning: Sustainable & Affordable Housing" (with Jason Kawall). Ethics, Policy, & Environment 21, no. 1 (2018): 17-20.

Discusses how the Trump administration's choice to leave the Paris Agreement creates the possibility for promising sustainability and climate action planning efforts at the state and local level, and how these efforts could also tie into affordable housing. 

"Factors Shaping Policy Learning: A Study of Policy Actors in Subnational Climate and Energy Issues" Review of Policy Research (2018).

Aims to contribute to the theoretical and methodological understanding of individual learning in the policy process by explicitly examining belief change and belief reinforcement as products of policy learning, measuring both, as well as measuring the absence of either. Indicates that extreme beliefs are associated with belief reinforcement, relative to policy actors with more moderate beliefs, and that collaboration with individuals with differing policy views is associated with belief change.

"Scaling down the "Netherlands Fallacy": A Local-Level Quantitative Study of the Effect of Affluence on the Carbon Footprint across the United States" (with Matthew Thomas Clement and Robert Habans). Environmental Science & Policy 78 (2017): 1-8.

Explores the interactions of affluence and other socioeconomic factors, carbon emissions and public policy in the United States using spatial regression models. Draws on theories from environmental sociology and public affairs frameworks. Reviews the results and discusses implications for policy, specifically in terms of cross-boundary environmental problems.

"The Pitfalls and Promises of Climate Action Plans: Transformative Resilience Strategy in U.S. Cities" (with Chandra Russo), in Resilience, Environmental Justice, and the City, edited by Beth Schaefer Caniglia, Manuel Vallee, and Beatrice Frank (CRC Press, 2017).

Focuses on social equity aspects of local climate action planning, with a focus on transformative adaptation as a resilience strategy in U.S. cities. 

"Climate Action Planning: the Urban Equity Dilemma" (with Chandra Russo), in Systemic Crises of Global Climate Change: Intersections of Race, Class, and Gender, edited by Phoebe Godfrey and Denise Torres (Routledge, 2016).

Examines the intersections of race, gender, and class in urban climate action planning and policy in the United States.

"Ecological Modernization or Aristocratic Conservation? Exploring the Impact of Affluence on Carbon Emissions at the Local Level" (with Robert Habans and Matthew Thomas Clement). Society & Natural Resources 27, no. 8 (2014): 850-866.

Conducts an exploratory study at the subnational level to expose another dimension of the affluence-emissions debate. Hypothesizes that affluence is positively related to carbon emissions from consumption activities but negatively related to emissions from production activities. Suggests that the wealthiest counties are able to displace certain types of emissions, specifically those related to energy and industrial production.