Matthew R. Auer (PhD 1996, Forestry & Environmental Studies), an expert in environmental and energy policy, sustainable development, and foreign aid, became dean of the faculty and vice president for academic affairs at Bates College in Lewiston, Maine, in July. At Bates, Auer is the chief academic officer, with responsibilities for faculty recruitment, review, tenure and promotion, and faculty career development in the arenas of instruction, scholarship, and community engagement. His portfolio includes all academic departments and programs, the Bates College Museum of Art, the Career Development Center, the Harward Center for Community Partnerships, The Learning Commons, the Mathematics and Statistics Workshop, the Office for External Grants, the Office of the Registrar and Academic Systems, Writing at Bates, and Athletics.
Auer came to Bates from Indiana University, where he served as dean of the Hutton Honors College and professor of public and environmental affairs. He earned numerous teaching awards, including the President’s Award for Excellence in Teaching, IU’s highest honor for instruction.
He has written or co-written more than 50 peer-reviewed articles and book chapters on environmental policy. His paper, “Communication and Competition in Environmental Studies,” published in Policy Sciences in 2010, earned the journal’s Harold D. Lasswell award for best article. His edited 2004 volume, Restoring Cursed Earth: Appraising Environmental Policy Reforms in Eastern Europe and Russia, was nominated for the International Studies Association’s Sprout Award for best book in global environmental studies. Former editor-in-chief of the public policy journal, Policy Sciences, he currently serves on the Executive Council of the Society of Policy Scientists.
In addition to his scholarship and academic positions, Auer has served in a variety of public policy roles. He was senior adviser to the U.S. Forest Service from 2001 to 2006, and during that time was a member of the U.S. delegation to the United Nations Forum on Forests and to the International Tropical Timber Council. For more than 20 years he has developed, implemented, and evaluated energy and environmental aid programs for the U.S. Agency for International Development and for foreign aid agencies in Mexico, Ecuador, Bolivia, Chile, the Dominican Republic, Estonia, Poland, Azerbaijan, Georgia, Laos, Vietnam, and Thailand.
Before coming to Yale, Auer earned a master’s degree from the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy at Tufts and an AB in anthropology from Harvard.