Cooperative Institute for Research in Environmental Sciences

Lisa Dilling

CIRES Research Affiliate, EDF Associate Chief Scientist

Headshot of Lisa Dilling
  • Ph.D., University of California, Santa Barbara, 1997
Office Location
SEEC - S106C

Research Interests

I am a Professor in the Department of Environmental Studies and former Director of the Western Water Assessment at the University of Colorado Boulder. My research focuses on understanding how to build climate resilience and accelerate the transition to carbon-free energy. I use interdisciplinary, empirical methods to study the tradeoffs involved in implementing new policies at the local and regional scale and understanding how science can best support robust decision making in deeply uncertain contexts.  Topics of research include energy, climate adaptation, drought and urban water management, policy for usable science, climate change and public lands, carbon management, geoengineering, and municipal policies regarding natural hazards. I have served on numerous national and research advisory boards, three journal editorial boards, a National Academy of Sciences, Engineering and Medicine Committee, and was a Leverhulme Visiting Professor at the University of Oxford in 2016-2017. I teach classes on climate and energy policy, science and technology policy, resilience analysis, usable science, research methods, and introductory environmental studies.

Research Topics

  • Accelerating the energy transition
  • Climate adaptation strategies
  • Policy analysis and tradeoffs
  • How decision maker values and perception affect policy choices

Research Images

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About CECA

CECA connects and creates a supportive environment for graduate students and postdocs who come from various academic units to do research in CIRES.