Robert Boyer is an assistant professor in the Department of Geography and Earth Sciences at UNC Charlotte, and a faculty affiliate with both UNC Charlotte’s program in Public Policy and the Infrastructure and Environmental Systems (INES) program. He earned his PhD in Regional Planning from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign in 2013. His research focuses on experimentation in the built environment, specifically how grassroots environmental movements influence long-term plans for urban and regional development. He is interested in alternative residential development models like cohousing and ecovillages, and how these community spaces nurture innovation in construction, transportation, and other material practices. A seasoned performer of improvisational comedy, Boyer has published research on the usefulness of improvisational comedy as a metaphor for how plans work as signals in complex, multi-actor urban regions. He is a co-principle investigator with the NSF-funded Integrated Network for Social Sustainability (INSS) and teaches courses in urban planning and urban sustainability.
His work has been published in Environment & Planning A; the Journal of Planning Education and Research; Planning Theory; Sustainability; Sustainability: Science, Policy, & Practice; the International Journal of Sustainable Transportation; and Housing Policy Debate.
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Ph.D. in Regional Planning, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, 2013
M.U.P. in Urban Planning, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, 2009
B.A. in Anthropology, Washington University in St. Louis, 2006