Douglas L. Bessette, Assistant Professor for Sustainable Energy Systems

I am an Assistant Professor in the Department of Community Sustainability at Michigan State University, where I research and teach courses in sustainable energy, energy transitions and community energy development. I use both an interdisciplinary coupled human-environment system and applied decision research approach to tackle multi-scale problems that often require identifying and analyzing complicated tradeoffs. In my applied work, I often develop and deploy structured decision-making frameworks that incorporate value-focused thinking and help stakeholders to identify objectives, generate alternatives, predict consequences and make explicit tradeoffs between values and strategies. My past research has spanned multiple contexts including organic and sustainable agriculture, coastal climate risk management, natural resource management in developing territories and green infrastructure.

I earned my PhD in Geography from the University of Calgary in Alberta, Canada, my MSc from the Department of Community, Agriculture, Recreation and Resource Studies at MSU and a BA in Economics from the University of Michigan. Following completion of my PhD, I worked as a postdoctoral scholar with the Network for Sustainable Climate Risk Management at Penn State University and as a Senior Research Associate in the School of Environment and Natural Resources at Ohio State University. Before completing my undergraduate degree I served four years in the U.S. Army as an M1A1 tanker

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