Joshua Newell, Ph.D.

Assistant Professor

2008 Ph.D., Geography, Urban Ecology Certificate  University of Washington
2003 M.A., Geography, University of Washington
1991 B.A., History, Brown University

Joshua Newell is an assistant professor in the School of Natural Resources and Environment at the University of Michigan. He is a broadly trained human-environment geographer, whose research focuses on questions related to urban sustainability, resource consumption, and environmental and social justice. Newell’s current research can be divided into two primary areas of interest. The first, Urban Infrastructure and Form, focuses on structural features of the urban form (e.g. built environment, transport, energy, and water infrastructure). The second research area, Urban Consumption and Commodities, focuses on the interrelationships between the consumption of consumer products, our responsibilities as global ‘green’ urban citizens, and the role of governance mechanisms and frameworks (including local institutions) in regulating product consumption. His research approach is often multi-scalar and integrative and, in addition to theory and method found in geography and urban planning, he draws upon principles and tools of industrial ecology, and spatial analysis.   Joshua teaches Sustainability and Society, a large undergraduate course, and Urban Sustainability, which is designed for MS and PhD students. He also leads a year-long interdisciplinary PhD student workshop that grapples with theories and concepts of urbanism, sustainability, and resilience.  

For more information on Newell's research and teaching, please visit

Google Scholar profile:

Recent Publications (Journal Articles)

2015. In Press.  Newell, J.P. & Cousins, J. The boundaries of urban metabolism: Towards a political-industrial ecology. Progress in Human Geography

2015. Cousins, J. & J.P. Newell. A political-industrial ecology of water supply infrastructure for Los Angeles. Geoforum, 58: 38–50.

2015. Kim, O.S., & Newell, J.P. The “geographic emission benchmark” model: A baseline approach to measuring emissions associated with deforestation and forest degradation. Journal of Land Use Science

2014. Newell, J.P & Simeone, J. Russia’s forests in a global economy: How consumption drives environmental change. Eurasian Geography & Economics, 55(1): 37–70.

2014. Lee, K., Newell, J.P., & Wolch, J.R. “Story-networks” of livestock and climate change: Actors, their artifacts, and the shaping of urban print media. Society & Natural Resources. 27(9): 948–963.

2014. Reynolds, K.D., Dahmann, N., Wolch, J.R., Joassart-Marcelli, P., Dunton, G., Rudulph, D., Newell, J.P., Thayer, J., & Jerrett, M. Factors predicting the capacity of Los Angeles-region recreation programs to promote energy expenditure. Health & Place 28: 67–72.

2014. Wolch, J.R, Byrne, J., & Newell, J.P. Urban green space, public health and environmental justice: The challenge of making cities ‘just green enough.’ Landscape and Urban Planning 125, 234–244.

2013. Newell, J. P., Seymour, M., Yee, T., Renteria, J., Longcore, T., Wolch, J. R., & Shishkovsky, A. Green alley programs: Planning for a sustainable urban infrastructure? Cities 31: 144–155.

2012. Newell, J.P., & Vos, R.O. Accounting for forest carbon pool dynamics in product carbon footprints: Challenges and opportunities. Environmental Impact Assessment Review 37: 23–36.

2012. Xu, M., Weissburg, M., Newell, J.P., & J. Crittenden. Developing a science of infrastructure ecology for sustainable urban systems. Environmental Science &Technology 46(15): 7928-9.

2012. Kim, J., Rahimi, M., & Newell, J.P. Life-cycle emissions from port electrification: A case study for the port of Los Angeles. International Journal of Sustainable Transportation6(6): 321–337.

2011. Newell, J.P., & Vos, R.O. Papering over space and place: Product carbon label modeling in the global paper industry. Annals of the Association of American Geographers 101(4): 730–741.

2010. Wolch, J., Newell, J.P., Seymour, M., Bradbury-Huang, H., Reynolds, K., Mapes, J., & Brady, K. The forgotten and the future: Reclaiming back alleys for a sustainable city. Environment and Planning A 42: 2874–2896.

2006. Jenerette, G., Marussich, W., & Newell, J.P. Linking ecological footprints with ecosystem valuation in the provisioning of urban freshwater. Ecological Economics 59: 38–47.

2005. Robinson, L., Newell, J.P., & Marzluff, J. Twenty-five years of sprawl in the Seattle region: Growth management responses and implications for conservation. Landscape and Urban Planning 71 (1): 51–72.

2003. Vandergert, P., & Newell, J.P. Illegal logging in the Russian Far East and Siberia. The International Forestry Review 5 (3): 303–6.




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