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Geography Department > Faculty > Mark A. Ridgley

Mark A. Ridgley

mark rigley

Mark A. Ridgley, Professor
Research Interests
: resource systems analysis; water resources planning; urban environmental services in the Third World, especially Latin America; coastal & marine resource management; systems/policy analysis; multi-criterion decision support.
Phone: (808) 956-3510


B. Env. Design, Landscape Architecture, North Carolina State University, 
MS, Geography, Pennsylvania State University, 
PhD, Geography (minor in Operations Research), Pennsylvania State University, 1986. 

Professional Experience

Landscape architecture in the Netherlands; environmental planning in Venezuela and Spain; environmental policy analysis in the Netherlands and Italy; urban water-supply and sanitation systems in Latin America.

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Research and Professional interests 

My interests focus on prescriptive decision making and decision support for resource management and environmental planning, and on the methodologies supporting or aiding these endeavors. These interests include the development and application of methodologies and techniques to facilitate problem identification and structuring, formulation and design of alternative courses of action, evaluation of alternatives, resource allocation, and collaborative decision making and resource co-management. Many of these problems are characterized by uncertainty and conflict. My work usually involves formal modeling, both quantitative and qualitative, and draws extensively on frameworks and methods from the fields of operations research, multiple criteria decision making, fuzzy sets and systems, scenario modeling, risk assessment, modern systems and policy analysis, and structural (graph- theoretic and algebraic-topological) analysis.

The topical problems I deal with usually concern one or more of the following: water resources and land use (e.g., allocation, drought, water supply and sanitation in the Third World, project evaluation and selection, policy prioritization, conservation-development conflicts); environmental and ecosystem evaluation and conservation biology (e.g., setting conservation priorities, assessing risk of invasive species); .coastal, coral-reef, and marine resource management (e.g., configuring marine protected areas; modeling land-to-water material fluxes); ways to define and model fairness and develop burden-sharing arrangements.

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Recent publications representative of this research include

"“Value-Focussed Development of a Multiobjective Watershed-Management Plan in Hawaii”. In: Tadeusz Trzaskalik (Ed.), Multiple Criteria Decision Making ’08. Karol Adamiecki University of Economics Press. 2009, pp. 169-183. (with Denise Mills)

"The Bi-Polar Resource-Reallocation Problem under Uncertainty and Conflict: A General Methodology for the Public Decision Maker'" J. of Environmental Management 59 (2) (June): 89-105, 2000. (with C. Lumpkin).

" Multiple Criteria Analysis Integrates Economic, Ecological, and Social Objectives for Coral Reef Managers," Coral Reefs 18(4): 393-402, 1999. (with Fernandes & van't Hof).

" Optimization of Economic Policies and Investment Projects Using a Fuzzy-Logic-Based Cost-Effectiveness Model of Coral Reef Quality: Empirical Results for Montego Bay, Jamaica," Coral Reefs 18(4): 381-392, 1999. (with Ruitenbeek et al.).

Multi-criterion Planning of Protected-Area Buffer Zones: An Application to Mexico's Izta-Popo National Park. In: E. Beinat and P. Nijkamp (eds), Multi-criteria Evaluation in Land-Use Management. Kluwer, 1998. (with G. Heil).

" Multi-criterion Decision Support for a Conflict over Stream Diversion and Land-Water Reallocation in Hawaii," Applied Mathematics and Computation 83(2-3)(May): 153-172, 1997. (with Penn & Tran).

" Fair Sharing of Greenhouse-Gas Burdens," Energy Policy 24(6): 517-529, 1996.

" Using Multi-criterion Optimization to Classify Ecosystems from Multi-temporal Imagery," Physical Geography 17(3): 282-293, 1996. (with J. Aerts).

" Water Balance, Climate Change, and Land-Use Planning in the Pearl Harbor Basin, Hawai'i," Int. J. Water Resources Development 12(4): 515-530, 1996. (with Giambelluca & Nullet).

" Determining Rural Land-Use Goals: Methodological Primer and an Application to Agroforestry in Italy," The Environmental Professional 17(3): 209-225, 1995. (with Aquater).

Ridgley, M. and F. Rijsberman. "Multi-criteria Evaluation in a Policy Analysis of a Rhine Estuary ," Water Resources Bulletin 28(6). pp. 1095-1110, 1992.

Ridgley, M. and T. Giambelluca. "Linking Water-Balance Simulation and Multi-objective Programming: Land-Use Plan Design in Hawai`i,"; Environment and Planning B: Planning and Design 19: 317-336, 1992.

" Services in a Colombian Shantytown: Speculations on the Limits of Collective Self- Help," Yearbook, Conference of Latin American Geographers (CLAG) 15: 59-69, 1989.

"Distanced Perspectives: AIDS, Anencephaly, and AHP," Theoretical Medicine and Bioethics 19(1): 47-58, 1998. (with Tom Koch)

“ Geography as Bioethics: A Structural Analysis of Consensus in Medical Decision Making,” Ethics, Place, and Environment 2(2),1999. (with Tom Koch)

“ Measuring Potential Ethnic Conflict: The Case of Southeast Asia,” Growth and Change 31(2): 167-194, 2000. (with Fuller et al.)

" Condorcet's Jury Theorem in a Bioethical Context: The Dynamics of Group Decision Making," Group Decision and Negotiation 9: 379-392, 2000. (with Tom Koch)

" Application of Fuzzy Logic-Based Modeling to Improve the Performance of the Revised Universal Soil Loss Equation," Catena vol. 47, no. ER3, pp. 203-226, 2002. (with Tran et al.)

“ Ethnic fragmentation in South Asia.” The Arab World Geographer 5 (1): 54-71, 2002 (with Zurick et al.)

“ Potential for Ethnic Conflict in China,” Eurasian Geography and Economics, 2002. (with Fuller et al.)

Teaching and Graduate Advising

The methodological and topical interests mentioned above are also the focus of my teaching. Graduate-level courses and seminars include resource management, optimization modeling, and human- environment systems analysis. I would welcome advisees with any combination of the above interests. In addition, I am quite keen to work with students who wish to concentrate on problems of waste management, the ecological design of human settlements, and any of these topics that center on squatter/shanty environments, Hawai`i, or Latin America (e.g., urban water issues in Mexico).