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Craig Thomas

Craig Thomas

Instructor, School of Sustainability

School of Sustainability
Arizona State University
PO Box 875502
Tempe, AZ 85287-5502


  • Instructor, School of Sustainability


At Harvard and Arizona State University, Craig Thomas assisted teaching undergraduate and graduate Global Climate Change, Environmental Ethics and Land Management, Sustainable Ecosystems, Renewable Energy Systems, and Sustainable Cities courses. He was elected Secretary and then President of the Harvard Extension Environmental Club. His master’s thesis compared the sustainability and climate-change plans of two very different cities—Boston and Phoenix—to determine if plans were primarily shaped by their regional contexts, or by best practices. His dissertation explored the role of naturalists from the American environmental tradition in solving socio-ecological challenges, an adaptation of which is published as a chapter entitled “An Intellectual History of Sustainability” in Sustainability for the 21st Century: Pathways, Programs, and Policies.

Thomas has researched interdisciplinary literature—especially the intersection of environmental sciences and writing in the humanities—continuously since early in his academic career. Thomas studied civil engineering for two years at West Point before transferring to Ohio State to study English literature. He later studied creative writing with Beat Generation and Bioregionalist writers like Allen Ginsburg, and helped publish them as co-editor of Bombay Gin. Thomas has taught university-level modern and postmodern, English and American literature and writing workshops in Toko University, Taiwan, and published short stories in Jumbo Shrimp, The Murray Meaning, and as a finalist for the Scribner’s Best of the Fiction Workshops: 1997. He has also worked as the Director of Angkor Wat Research for Alexandria Cousteau’s non-profit group, Blue Legacy: Telling the Story of Our Water Planet, and presented the findings in a paper called “Angkor Wat: An Ancient Example of Water Resource Mismanagement,” at the 2nd Annual Arizona State University Graduate Conference on Asian Studies. Thomas recently published climate-change and regional-policy related articles in the Sierra Sun and Tahoe Daily Tribune, helped represent the School of Sustainability by presenting at AASHE and Biophilic Cities conferences, and is now a board member of the Salem, Massachusetts Renewable Energy Task Force.


  • PhD, Sustainability, Arizona State University, 2015
  • MLA, Sustainability and Environmental Management, Harvard University, 2012
  • MFA, Writing and Poetics, Naropa Institute, 1998
  • BA (cum laude), English Literature, The Ohio State University, 1991


Journal Articles


Khagram, S. and C. W. Thomas. 2010. Toward a platinum standard for evidence-based assessment by 2020. Public Administration Review 70(s1):S100-S106. DOI: 10.1111/j.1540-6210.2010.02251.x. (link )


Khagram, S., C. Thomas, C. Lucero and S. Mathes. 2009. Evidence for development effectiveness. Journal of Development Effectiveness 1(3):247-270. DOI: 10.1080/19439340903141415. (link )