Major Science Organizations Honor
Seto For Work on Urban Land Systems

Two major U.S. science organizations recently honored Karen C. Seto, professor of geography and urbanization science and Associate Dean for Research at the Yale School of Forestry & Environmental Studies (F&ES), for her work on understanding urban land systems.
karen seto
Karen Seto
Last week Seto received the inaugural Research Excellence Award in Human Dimensions of Global Change from the American Association of Geographers (AAG). The award, which was presented during the AAG Annual Meeting in Boston, recognizes research that advances humankind’s fundamental understanding of the human dimensions of global change.
Seto also received the Ecological Society of America’s (ESA) 2017 Sustainability Science Award for a Science paper, “Systems Integration for Global Sustainability,” which she co-authored. The award, which will be officially presented during ESA’s annual meeting in Portland, Ore. this summer, recognizes the authors of scholarly work who make the greatest contribution to the science of ecosystem and regional sustainability through the integration of ecological and social sciences.
That paper urged a systems integration approach to global sustainability rather than isolated perspectives that target specific resources or individual challenges.
A geographer by training, Seto studies the human transformation of land and the links between urbanization, global change, and sustainability. Using remote sensing, field interviews, and modeling methods, she studies urbanization and land change, forecast urban growth, and examines the environmental consequences of urban expansion. She is also Director of the F&ES Doctoral Studies program.
“The expansion of the world’s urban population presents a range of sustainability challenges that go far beyond just our cities," said F&ES Dean Indy Burke. “Karen’s work continues to provide critical insights into the urgency of these challenges — and how we think about solutions that can serve future generations.”
PUBLISHED: April 12, 2017
Note: Yale School of the Environment (YSE) was formerly known as the Yale School of Forestry & Environmental Studies (F&ES). News articles posted prior to July 1, 2020, refer to the School's name at that time.