Joan Iverson Nassauer



MLA, Iowa State University (landscape architecture)

BLA, University of Minnesota (landscape architecture)



Joan Iverson Nassauer is Professor of Landscape Architecture at the School for Environment and Sustainability. She was named Fellow by the American Society of Landscape Architects (1992), Fellow of the Council of Educators in Landscape Architecture (2007), and Distinguished Practitioner of Landscape Ecology in the US (1998) and Distinguished Scholar (2007) by the International Association of Landscape Ecology. She focuses on the cultural sustainability of ecological design in human-dominated landscapes.  Her research offers knowledge and strategies for basing ecological design on cultural insight, strong science, and creative engagement with policy. Her teaching and recent projects apply this approach to brownfields, vacant property, exurban sprawl, and agricultural landscapes.

  • 2016-2019: University of MI Water Center: Erb Family Foundation. $1,116,999. Improving water quality and well-being in Detroit: A multidisciplinary partnership to design and assess socio-environmental performance of green infrastructureon vacant land.

  • 2014-2016: University of MI Water Center. $284,993. Improving water quality and well-being in Great Lakes post-industrial cities: A multidisciplinary partnership to assess Detroit’s green infrastructure (with sponsor-PI Natalie Sampson). 

  • 2014: University of MI Office of Research. $15,000. Investigating Residents’ Perceptions of Cues to Care in the Physical Environment of Post-Industrial Cities: Improving Measurement of Care. (with Amy Schulz). 

  • 2014: Argonne National Laboratory. $66,671. Socio-economic sustainability of biofuel production in Central Illinois.

  • 2013-2015: University of MI MCubed award. $60,000. The physical environment of post-industrial cities & well-being of their inhabitants (with Amy Schulz and Alicia Alvarez).

  • Distinguished Faculty Fellow in Sustainability, University of Michigan (2013-2015).
  • Rackham Distinguished Faculty Achievement Award, University of Michigan. (2012).
  • Distinguished Landscape Ecologist, US-International Association for Landscape Ecolog (2010). 
  • Best landscape ecology paper of the year: Honorable mention. For Nassauer, J. I., and Opdam, P. Design in science: Extending the landscape ecology paradigm. Landscape Ecology 23: 633-644 (2008).
  • Best landscape ecology paper of the year: Honorable mention. For: Gobster, P. H., Nassauer, J.I., Daniel, T. C., Fry, G. The shared landscape: what does aesthetics have to do with ecology? Landscape Ecology 22:959-972 (2007).

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  • Co-Editor-in-Chief, Landscape and Urban Planning
  • Chandler Park Promise Advisory Panel, Detroit, MI (2013).
  • Chair, US- IALE Taskforce on Public Policy (2010-2013).
  • Secretary, National Academy of Environmental Design (2009-2012).