Nost, Eric

Dr. Eric Nost
Assistant Professor
PhD, University of Wisconsin-Madison
Phone: 
519 824-4120 ext. 53279
Office: 
Hutt 344
Specialization: 

Political ecology; digital governance; environmental planning, markets, and justice; webmapping; agro-food systems; wetlands.

I am a geographer researching how data and technology inform conservation. I draw on and contribute to the fields of political ecology, science and technology studies (STS), and digital geographies. My most recent project followed the US state of Louisiana's efforts to simulate future wetlands loss along the Gulf Coast. Based on interviews, document surveys, and attendance at public meetings, I explain how bureaucrats and ecosystem scientists develop an infrastructure for modeling, build an institution and lean on technologies to learn from their simulations, and apply their findings to planning large-scale coastal restoration. The project characterizes the winners and losers that result and speaks to the opportunities and limits of applications of "big data" in (environmental) governance. Some of my previous research examined the contested role of software in ecosystem services markets in Oregon, while new projects explore digital agriculture, especially the design, maintenance, and use of decision-support tools and the governance of ag data infrastructure.

I teach classes in nature-society geography and (web) mapping, using maps to publicize hidden dimensions of environmental policy. I also participate in the Environmental Data and Governance Initiative, tracking how the US federal government portrays climate change and other issues on the web. For the past several years, I have collaborated in an effort to collate and visualize US EPA data on the North American hazardous waste trade - you can view our work here.

GEOG*2480 Mapping and GIS

For a full list, see my CV here. For webmapping and other programming projects, visit my Github page.

Moore, S. A., H. Rosenfeld, E. Nost, K. Vincent, and R. E. Roth. 2018. Undermining methodological nationalism: Cosmopolitan analysis and visualization of the North American hazardous waste trade. Environment and Planning A: Economy and Space. Link (in-press).

Vincent, K., R. E. Roth, S. A. Moore, Q. Huang, N. Lally, C. M. Sack, E. Nost, and H. Rosenfeld. 2018. Improving spatial decision making using interactive maps: An empirical study on interface complexity and decision complexity in the North American hazardous waste trade. Environment and Planning B: Urban Analytics and City Science. Link (in-press).

Rosenfeld, H., S. Moore, E. Nost, R. E. Roth, and K. Vincent. 2018. Hazardous Aesthetics: A “Merely Interesting” Toxic Tour of Waste Management Data. GeoHumanities. Link (in-press).

Nost, E. and M. Kelly. 2018. “Land Loss and Restoration in Coastal Louisiana: 1932-2009” in Water: An Atlas. Guerrilla Cartography.

Moore, S., R. Roth, H. Rosenfeld, E. Nost, K. Vincent, T. Buckingham, M.R. Arefin. 2017.Undisciplining Environmental Justice Research with Visual Storytelling. Geoforum. Link (in-press).

Nost, E., H. Rosenfeld, K. Vincent, S. Moore, and R.E. Roth. 2017. HazMatMapper: An online and interactive geographic visualization tool for exploring transnational flows of hazardous waste and environmental justice. Journal of Maps 13(1): 14-23. PDF. Map . Shortlisted for Journal of Maps’s 2017 “Best Map” award.

Nost, E. “American Coast, Imperiled Energy. 2015. A review of Jason P. Theriot’s American Energy, Imperiled Coast” Southern Spaces. Link

Nost, E. 2015. Performing nature’s value: software and the making of Oregon’s ecosystem services markets. Environment and Planning: A 47 (12): 2573-2590. PDF.

Nost, E. 2014. Scaling-up local foods: commodity practice in community supported agriculture (CSA). Journal of Rural Studies 34: 152-160. PDF

Digital Environmental Governance

I am recruiting a Master's student with interests in agri-environmental stewardship, geospatial technology, and science-policy interfaces, to start in Fall 2019. The student will complete a social science research project on ag data governance and use, conducting interviews with and surveying stakeholders including crop advisors, government agency staff, and representatives of farmers groups. The thesis will be developed alongside collaborators who are creating a soil carbon accounting and profit mapping tool (see Capmourteres et al. 2018) that will require assessing existing/best practices for farm-level data management and how users might actually employ such information in their decision-making. The research is funded by the Arrell Food Institute at the University of Guelph via the Canada First Research Excellence Fund.

The Master’s student will gain experience with semi-structured interview and Q survey methods, as well as cartographic analysis (depending on interest and qualifications). A key component of the research will involve knowledge mobilization alongside collaborators - an opportunity for the student to enhance their project management and public communication skills.

Prospective applicants should contact me via email - enost@uoguelph.ca (email address) - and forward an unofficial transcript, resume or CV, and a statement outlining their interests as they relate to the project description above. [pdf description]

Graduate Students Supervised

Name Research
Ph.D. Glaros, Alex