Meet the Experts

Find experts across Johns Hopkins involved in research and teaching related to environment, energy, sustainability and/or health. The following list is organized by the expert's last name. You can also search by area of expertise.

Learn more about the support E²SHI provides to Hopkins faculty, staff researcher or instructors.


Thomas Kempa

Assistant Professor, Dept of Chemistry
Krieger School of Arts & Sciences

tkempa@jhu.eduFaculty Website

Research Areas:
  • Synthesis of solid-state materials to help address extant challenges in environmental sustainability and in human health.
  • Development of diverse synthetic methods to make solid-state structures and devices embodying new phases, architectures, and topologies. Since these materials can exert unique control over critical physical processes (e.g. mass, charge, and energy transport), they can be used to study un-answered questions in basic science and to define advances in solar cells, catalysts, thermoelectrics, self-assembly, optics, electronics, and biological imaging.
Keywords: Energy, Air Pollution, Water, Waste/Resource Use

Naveeda Khan

E²SHI Executive Committee member
Associate Professor, Dept of Anthropology
Krieger School of Arts and Sciences

nkhan5@jhu.eduFaculty Website

Research Areas:

River-based community living on sand bars within the River Jamuna in Bangladesh, with a specific focus on how the dynamic environment informs social structures and everyday life. Understand what comprises climate change and adaptation to it in these parts.

Selected Publications

Khan, N. (2011). "Eddes in India: Town Planning, Plant Sentience, and Cooperative Evolution." Environment and Planning D: Society and Space, 29(5), pp. 840-856.

E²SHI-Supported Projects

Understanding the role and influence of civil society groups in global climate agreements.

Keywords: Agriculture/Food, Behavior change, Climate change, Ecology, Rural development/economies, Water

Christopher Overcash

Instructor, Engineering for Professionals, Whiting School of Engineering
Vice President, Environmental Discipline, KCI Technologies Inc.

covercash@jhu.eduFaculty Website

Research Areas:
  • Water and wastewater infrastructure sustainability, reliability and design
  • Infrastructure adaptation to climate change
  • Corporate environmental and social responsibility
  • Aeration of open water system to improve quality
  • Tidal pumping systems
  • Renewable energy systems
  • Atmospheric water generation system analysis
  • Marine and dredging projects and sustainable design
  • Analysis of environmental site contamination and remediation
Keywords: Infrastructure and Built Environment, Civil Engineering, Climate Change, Ecosystem/ Environmental Management, Environmental Policy, Resource Management, Transportation, Waste and Resource Use, Water

Bill Swartz

Senior Research Scientist, Space Department, Applied Physics Laboratory

Research Areas:
  • Atmospheric science modeling/analysis, satellite observation, field measurement
  • Turning climate science into actionable information

Selected Publications

Swartz, WH, LP Dyrud, W Wiscombe, SR Lorentz, SJ Papadakis, DL Wu, RA Summers and VE Wells. (2013). "Measuring Earth’s Radiation Imbalance with RAVAN: A CubeSat Mission to Measure the Driver of Global Climate Change." EarthZine

Keywords: Climate Change, Computer Engineering, Environmental Sciences, Systems Engineering, Water

Darryn Waugh

E²SHI Executive Committee member
Professor, Dept of Earth and Planetary Sciences
Krieger School of Arts and Sciences

waugh@jhu.eduFaculty Website

Research Areas:
  • Large-scale atmosphere and oceanic flow and transport, with a focus on understanding global environmental issues such as stratospheric ozone depletion and climate change. 
  • Air quality/ urban heat and public health

Selected Publications

Waugh, DW, CI Garfinkel, LM Polvani (2015). "Drivers of the recent tropical expansion in the Southern Hemisphere: Changing SSTs or ozone depletion?Journal of Climate, 28: 6581-6588.

Waugh, DW. (2014). "Changes in the ventilation of the southern oceans." Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society A, 372: 20130269. 

Keywords: Climate change, Atmospheric chemistry, Water/Oceans

Benjamin Zaitchik

Associate Professor, Dept of Earth and Planetary Sciences
Krieger School of Arts and Sciences

zaitchik@jhu.eduFaculty Website

Research Areas:

Hydrology and climate science with focus on water resource sustainability, climate-based analysis of disease risk, and renewable energy analysis.

Selected Publications

Zaitchik BF, K O’Meara, K Baja, MC McCormack, AA Scott and DW Waugh. (2016). "B’more Cool: Monitoring the Urban Heat Island at High Density for Health and Urban Design." Earthzine.

Zaitchik BF, B Simane, S Habib, MC Anderson, M Ozdogan, and JD Foltz. (2012). "Building Climate Resilience in the Blue Nile/Abay Highlands - A role for Earth System Sciences." International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, 9(2): 435-461.

E²SHI-Supported Projects

Building climate resilience in vulnerable regions

Modeling the effects of climate change on the global food system

Keywords: Agriculture/food, Climate change, Resource management, Water, Ecology

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Not only will atomic power be released, but someday we will harness the rise and fall of the tides and imprison the rays of the sun.
— Thomas Edison