Robert O. Vos, Ph.D., is an Associate Professor (Teaching) of Spatial Sciences with the USC Spatial Sciences Institute.
His research focuses on industrial ecology, including projects on regional materials flow analysis, eco-industrial park planning, lifecycle assessment, and sustainability indicators. One of his specialties is using GIS tools to improve methods used to measure the carbon footprint of many consumer products to more accurately assess their true environmental impact.
Vos also has published extensively on theories and concepts of sustainability. His article “The Spatially Explicit Water Footprint of Blue Jeans: Spatial Methods in Action for Sustainable Consumer Products and Corporate Management of Water” won the 2019 Case Studies in the Environment Prize for the best environmental case study in the journal for the year.
His co-edited book, Flashpoints in Environmental Policymaking: Controversies in Achieving Sustainability, won the annual Lynton K. Caldwell Prize in 1998 from the American Political Science Association for the best book on environmental politics and policy. He also is the recipient of the 2010 Sustainability Award for the SmartPackaging Initiative from Disney Consumer Products.
He teaches SSCI 165Lgw: Sustainability Science in the City in USC Spatial’s undergraduate program, geospatial technology project management and thesis direction in USC Spatial’s M.S. in GIST program, and the research practicum and teaching in the liberal arts course in USC Spatial’s Population, Health and Place doctoral program. In addition, Vos teaches industrial ecology: technology-environment interaction for the USC Viterbi School of Engineering Epstein Department of Industrial and Systems Engineering. He serves and has served as thesis advisor to numerous M.S. in GIST students.
Vos is certified as a Geographic Information Science Professional (GISP) by the Geographic Information Science Certification Institute (GISCI). He currently serves on the GISCI Board of Directors as the representative of the University Consortium for Geographic Information Science (UCGIS).
Ph.D., Political Science, University of Southern California
M.A., Political Science, University of Southern California
B.A., Study of the City, University of Southern California
Vos, R.O., The-Spatially-Explicit-Water-Footprint-of-Blue”>The Spatially Explicit Water Footprint of Blue Jeans: Spatial Methods in Action for Sustainable Consumer Products and Corporate Management of Water. Case Studies in the Environment, 3 (1):1 – 14, 2019 .
Newell, J.P. & Vos, R.O., Accounting for forest carbon pool dynamics in product carbon footprints: Challenges and opportunities. Environmental Impact Assessment Review, 37, 23-36, 2012.
Newell, J. & Vos, R.O., Dematerialization. In N. Cohen & P. Robbins (Eds.), Encyclopedia of Green Business: An A-to- Z Guide (pp. 127-130). Thousand Oaks, CA: SAGE Publications, Inc., 2011.
Newell, J.P. & Vos, R.O., “Papering” Over Space and Place: Product Carbon Footprint Modeling in the Global Paper Industry. Annals of the Association of American Geographers, 101:4, 730-741, 2011.
Vos, R.O., Defining sustainability: a conceptual orientation. Journal of Chemical Technology and Biotechnology, 82, 334-339, 2007.
Kamieniekci, S., Gonzalez, G.A. & Vos, R.O. (Eds.), Flashpoints in Environmental Policymaking: Controversies in Achieving Sustainability. Albany, NY: State University of New York Press, 1997.