Richard C. Rockwell

Richard Rockwell

Professor of Sociology 

Office: 119 Manchester Hall
Telephone: 860 486-0086

PhD., 1970, University of Texas – Austin
M.A., 1966 University of Texas – Austin
B.A., 1964, Zoology, University of Texas – Austin



I have pursued two tracks in my professional life: data archivist and sociologist. My career was punctuated by a thirteen-year stint as a program officer for the Social Science Research Council (New York).

As a data archivist, I directed the Louis Harris Data Center of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill (1969-1976), the Inter-university Consortium for Political and Social Research at the University of Michigan (1991-2000), and the Roper Center for Public Opinion Research of the University of Connecticut (2000-2004).

My sociological training was in social demography and quantitative methodology. While at SSRC, I developed a research interest in global-scale environmental changes that occur over time spans of decades to centuries. Many of these changes are caused by human actions, and some are having or will have significant effects on human societies.

I have worked on the environment since 1985, serving on a number of international interdisciplinary scientific committees and directing conferences, workshops, and institutes in this area. My current focus is on whether and how cities might be engineered or retro-engineered to reduce the impact on the environment of our production and consumption patterns while also improving the quality of life for us all, especially in the developing world.


Richard C. Rockwell, “From a Fictional Globe to POETic Ecosystems: Modelling Human Interactions with the Environment,” pp. 461-487 in H.-J. Schnellnhuber and V. Wnezel (eds.),Earth System Analysis: Integrating Science for Sustainability . Berlin: Springer- Verlag , 1998.
Richard C. Rockwell, “From a Carbon Economy to a Mixed Economy,” pp. 2-13 inConsequences: The Nature and Implications of Environmental Change , Volume 4, 1998.

Richard C. Rockwell, “Culture and Cultural Change,” pp. 357-382 in William B. Meyer and B. L. Turner II (eds.), Changes in Land Use and Land Cover: A Global Perspective (Cambridge, England: Cambridge University Press, 1994)