Sweth tuler
Project Center 211A
+1 (508) 8315000 x6444
Affiliated Department or Office
Environmental & Sustainability Studies
PhD Environmental Science and Policy Clark University 1996
MS Technology & Policy Program Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) 1987
BA Mathematics University of Chicago 1984


Seth has been part of the Interdisciplinary and Global Studies Division since 2002, as teacher, advisor, and co-director of project centers. He is the co-Director of the Boston Project Center and was the co-Director of the Bangkok Project Center from 2011-2018. He enjoys exposing students to contemporary problems in environmental and public health policy making and challenging them to apply insights emerging from research to practical applications. He loves share his curiosity with students about the ways that people are impacted by different technological and natural systems.

A desire to link research and practice has been a central part of Seth’s work since receiving his PhD in Environmental Science and Policy from Clark University in 1996. Seth’s research interests have been concerned with risk governance, public participation, longterm stewardship of contaminated sites, and developing tools to characterize human impacts and vulnerabilities to risk events. He has conducted research, largely with colleagues at the Social and Environmental Research Institute, in a wide range of policy arenas, most recently focused on climate change adaptation planning, clean-up of sites in the US nuclear weapons complex, and nuclear waste management. A thread throughout his work has been to empower communities to participate more effectively in the management of risk.

For more information about Seth's research visit www.seri-us.org and www.vcapsforplanning.org

Seth was a member of federal Advisory Committee on Energy-Related Epidemiologic Research that provided advice to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention on health studies arising from programs of the US nuclear weapons complex and chaired its Subcommittee for Community Affairs for 2 years. The role of this subcommittee was to bring voices of community residents into deliberations about health study designs and public health responses to contamination from nuclear weapons facilities. He also served on the National Academies of Science Committee on Transportation of Spent Nuclear Fuel and High Level Radioactive Waste, Standing Committee on Chemical Demilitarization, and Committee on Alternatives for the Demilitarization of Conventional Munitions.


Scholarly Work

Moser, S., Dow, K., and Tuler, S. 2017. Out of harm’s way: Challenges in reducing current and future coastal risk exposure. In R. Kaspserson (ed), Risk conundrums: Solving unsolvable problems. NY: Earthscan. Pp. 189-206. 2017

Tuler, S., Dow, K., Webler, T., Whitehead, J. (2016). Learning through participatory modeling: Reflections on what it means and how it is measured. In: S. Grey and M. Paolisso, R. Jordan, S. Grey (eds.), Including Stakeholders in Environmental Modeling. Switzerland: Springer International Publishing. 2016

Kettle, N. P., Dow, K., Tuler, S., Webler, T., Whitehead, J., & Miller, K. M. 2014. Integrating scientific and local knowledge to inform risk-based management approaches for climate adaptation, Climate Risk Management 4-5:17-31. 2014

Tuler, S. and Kasperson, R. 2013. Social distrust and its implications for risk communication: An example from high level radioactive waste management. In: Joe Arvai and Louis Rivers (eds.), Recent advances in risk communication theory and practice. Washington: Earthscan. 2013

Tuler, S. 2012. Institutional preferences for justice, avoiding harm, and expertise in public health policy making about the health consequences of iodine-131 nuclear weapons testing fallout. In S. Quigley, A. Lowman, S. Wing (eds.),Tortured science: Health studies, ethics, and nuclear weapons in the United States. Amitysville, NY: Baywood Publishing Company. 2012

Professional Highlights & Honors
, 2017
National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine’s Committee on Alternatives for the Demilitarization of Conventional Munitions
, 2016
National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine’s Standing Committee on Chemical Demilitarization
, 2015
National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine’s Committee on Review of Criteria for Successful Treatment of Hydrolysate at PCAPP and BGCAPP
, 2003
National Academy of Sciences Committee on Transportation of High-level Radioactive Waste and Spent Nuclear Fuel
, 2008
Fulbright Scholarship in Thailand


Citizen scientists help create heat map of Worcester

WPI’s effort to help Worcester determine the city’s hottest areas was detailed in this Telegram &  Gazette article. “Excessive heat is a public health threat, especially to people we’d describe as vulnerable,” said   Associate Professor, IGSD, Seth Tuler, who is working on the project. He also noted that he hoped the project would provide “a more fine-grained understanding” of how that health threat is distributed across Worcester. WPI’s Global Lab was a project funder, the article added.