Joe Arvai

Max McGraw Professor of Sustainable Enterprise; Director, Erb Institute for Global Sustainable Enterprise

Education: 

PhD, University of British Columbia (risk and decision sciences)

MS, University of British Columbia (oceanography)

BS, University of British Columbia (ecology) 

Phone: 
(734) 647-3891

About: 

Joe Arvai, PhD, is the Max McGraw Professor of Sustainable Enterprise at the School for Environment and Sustainability, and the Ross School of Business. He is also the Director of the Erb Institute for Global Sustainable Enterprise.  Joe is an internationally recognized expert in the risk and decisions sciences; his research has two main areas of emphasis: First,  Joe and his research group conduct experiments focused on advancing our understanding of how people process information and make decisions, with a specific emphasis on how people make tradeoffs. Second, Joe and his team conduct research focused on developing and testing decision-aiding tools and approaches that can be used by people to improve decision quality across a wide range of environmental, social, and economic contexts.  Joe's research is applied, and accounts for decision-making by a broad spectrum of public and stakeholder groups, as well as by technical experts, business leaders, and policy makers.  His work also focuses on choices made by people individually, and when working in groups.  Likewise, he conducts his research across a wide range of contexts, ranging from environmental risk management, to consumer choice and policy-making.  In addition to Joe's academic work, he is a member of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's Chartered Science Advisory Board, and is a member of the U.S. National Academy of Sciences' Board on Environmental Change and Society.

Research: 
  • Decision aiding for improved energy planning: The case of the Northwest Territories. 

  • How elicitation methods influence preferences and preference orders: Implications for personal and policy decisions.   

  • Aligning objectives and incentives: Testing alternative PES design and implementation processes in rural Vietnam.

  • Emergency management in rural America: Decision-makers’ use of climate science in flood planning and management.

  • Resource management in developing countries: Improving decisions by uncovering hidden objectives and confronting difficult tradeoffs

Select publications: 
Read more publications here

Service: 

Member, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's Chartered Science Advisory Board

Member, U.S. National Academy of Sciences' Board on Environmental Change and Society