Faculty Associates

Bubbosh, Paul
Adjunct Professor, Department of Environmental Science and Policy, College of Science
Adjunct Professor, Schar School of Policy and Government

Paul Bubbosh has 25 years of experience working in the environmental sector. He was the former Director of the Energy Security Division in the U.S. Department of Energy where he spent 8 years leading foreign intelligence analysis on global energy and environmental issues. Prior to his service in DOE, he spent 13 years in the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, where he worked in the Offices of Transportation and Air Quality, Radiation and Indoor Air, Enforcement and Compliance Assurance, and in the Office of the Assistant Administrator for Air and Radiation. At DOE, he published several Presidential Daily Briefs, and at EPA he published air quality guidance on State Implementation Plan credits for voluntary programs. He served as an environmental legal advisor in the U.S. Peace Corps serving in Costa Rica for 2 years. He also worked in The Nature Conservancy conducting legal analysis of Central American environmental laws. Locally, he spent 5 years as Chair of the Montgomery County Energy and Air Quality Advisory Committee and he clerked for the Honorable F. Bruce Bach of the 19th Judicial Circuit in Virginia (Fairfax Circuit Court).

Areas of Expertise/Interest:

  • Environmental Law
  • International Environmental Law
  • Energy Law & Policy
  • Environmental Policy
  • Environmental Security
  • Environmental Politics
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Curtis, Michael, Ph.D.
Adjunct Professor, Schar School of Policy and Government

Dr. Curtis is an energy and development expert and has led its energy and environmental programs in several U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) missions. Most recently, he led a large energy program in Central Asia that encompassed market liberalization policy reforms, private investments in clean energy projects, and establishing a regional power market.  He also served as the Director of the Energy Office at USAID’s mission in Pakistan where he led a large energy program that was aimed at increasing Pakistan’s energy resources and helping power sector institutions more effectively meet the country’s electricity needs. He has also served as an Acting Deputy Assistant Administrator in USAID’s Africa Bureau, where he worked closely with the White House’s National Security Council in formulating President Obama’s  U.S. Strategy for Sub-saharan Africa and the Power Africa Initiative.  In addition, he worked for the U.S. Department of Energy, where he was the Director of the Office of Technology Analysis, in the Office of Policy and International Affairs.  He was the lead author on a number of publications for the International Energy Agency, the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, and the U.S. Climate Change Technology Program, and served as the Department’s lead on technology transfer programs and policies.  He has a Ph.D. in Public Policy from George Mason University, and MS and BS degrees in Engineering from the University of Texas.

Areas of Expertise/Interest:

  • International Energy Development
  • Energy and International Development
  • Technological Innovation and Clean Energy Technologies
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Guess, George, Ph.D.
Adjunct Professor, Schar School of Policy and Government

Dr. Guess is a former Scholar in Residence in Public Administration and Policy at American University (2007-11). He was a recipient of the Jesse Burkhead Award for best article published in Public Budgeting and Finance in 2006 (with Christine Martell). From 2004-2007, he was Director of Research at the Open Society Institute’s Local Government and Public Services Reform Initiative in Budapest, Hungary.  From 1993-2004, he was a Senior Public Administration Specialist at Development Alternatives, Inc. (DAI).  Before that, he served two years with the Fiscal Affairs Department of the IMF, providing public expenditure management assistance in the former Soviet Union and Eastern Europe. For the World Bank, he led and served on public expenditure review missions in several countries of the former Soviet Union, West Africa and Central America.  He was an OAS Fellow to Costa Rica and a Fulbright Professor twice—once to Uruguay and later in the Central American Research Program to Honduras, Belize and Costa Rica. His PhD is in political science from the University of California, Riverside, and he is a graduate of the University of California, Berkeley.

He is the author or co-author of ten books, including:  Comparative Public Budgeting: Global Perspectives on Taxing and Spending2nd Edition (New York: Cambridge University Press, 2021), with James D. Savage; Building Democracy and International Governance (New York: Routledge/ Taylor & Francis, 2019); International Public Policy Analysis with Thomas Husted (New York: Routledge/ Taylor & Francis, 2016); Cases in Public Policy Analysis, 3nd edition with Paul G. Farnham (Georgetown University Press, 2011), and Comparative Public Budgeting: Global Perspectives on Taxing and Spending, with Lance T. LeLoup (Albany: SUNY Press, 2010).

Areas of Expertise/Interest:

  • Public Administration
  • International Finance
  • Technological Innovation and Clean Energy Technologies
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Hicks, Joel, Ph.D.
CDR, USN (Ret)
Adjunct Professor, Schar School of Policy and Government

Mr. Hicks received his Ph.D. (Public Policy) from George Mason University’s Schar School of Policy and Government. He is a former U.S. Naval Officer who served in the nuclear submarine community as well as completing multiple assignments in DoD space acquisition and operational communities. He obtained his Nuclear Engineer credentials through Naval Reactors, and his last active-duty assignment was as Deputy Director, Joint Space Operations Center (JSpOC), Vandenberg AFB, CA. Mr. Hicks has also taught two graduate courses, “International Issues in Energy Policy” and “Science, Technology, and Energy Policy” at The George Washington University’s Elliott School of International Affairs (ESIA).

His dissertation “Behavioral Interventions in Energy Consumption” examines aspects of prospect theory applied to energy consumption behavior. He frequently writes about demand side management (DSM) of energy systems with a focus on energy efficiency, behavioral economics, and public sector energy governance/institutions. In 2019, he successfully ran for a seat on the Carlisle Borough Council for a four-year term and was selected as Chair, Climate Action Commission for Carlisle Borough.

He lives with his partner, Megan, and dog (Ginger) in Carlisle, PA.
He currently teaches two undergraduate classes at the Schar School, “GOVT 366 – Public Policy Analysis” and “GOVT 464 – Governance and Energy Policy”.

Areas of Expertise/Interest:

  • Energy Governance and Policy
  • Behavioral Economics
  • Public Policy Analysis
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Kim, Younsung
Assistant Professor of Public Policy and Management. Department of Environmental Science and Policy
703-993-5165 (P)

Dr. Younsung Kim is an Associate Professor in the Department of Environmental Science and Policy. Her research lies in collaborative governance and self-regulatory policy tools designed to address today’s complex environmental and sustainability challenges. Focusing on the private sector’s role in environmental governance, she has investigated topics such as whether Environmental Management Systems (EMSs) are effective, why some companies are more receptive to regulatory environmental policy, and which type of firms would be most likely to form cross-sector partnerships for sustainability solutions. In 2016, her research article “Business as a Collaborative Partner: Understanding Firms’ Sociopolitical Support for Policy Formation” received the Best Article Award from the Public and Nonprofit Management Division of the Academy of Management. Her works have been published in Public Administration Review, Handbook of Public-Private Partnerships in Developing and Emerging Economies, and London School of Economics Business Review and others. Dr. Kim teaches Environmental Policy and Corporate Environmental Management and Policy. She also teaches and coordinates EVPP 337: Environmental Policymaking in Developing Countries, a Mason Core writing-intensive course. She is a recipient of a 2017 Curriculum Impact Grant Award, a 2018 George Mason University Teaching Excellence Award, and a 2018 Mason Career Connection Award. Prior to her career in academia, she worked for the Ministry of Environment in South Korea and for the World Bank’s Carbon Finance Assist Team. She recently served as an external reviewer of the US EPA’s Pathfinder Innovation Projects.

Areas of Expertise/Interest:

  • Climate change and energy policy as well as the role of private sector for the development of renewable energy projects in developing countries
  • Public and private partnerships for renewable energy projects by the local governments in developing countries: Opportunities and challenges, to Energy Policy.
  • The current state and trends of renewable energy projects in Africa and policy implications. Preparation for submission to Renewable Energy. Can business be a collaborative partner for climate governance? An empirical analysis of S&P 500 firms’ support of mandatory climate regulation, to Journal of Policy Analysis and Management.
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Kinter, Jim
Director, Center for Ocean-Land-Atmosphere Studies
Chair, Department of Atmospheric, Oceanic & Earth Sciences
Professor, Climate Dynamics
(703) 993-5700  (P)

Dr. James L. Kinter III is Director of the Center for Ocean-Land-Atmosphere Studies (COLA) whose research includes studies of climate variability and predictability on sub-seasonal and longer time scales, focusing on phenomena such as monsoons, El Niño and the Southern Oscillation, and modes of extratropical variability. Dr. Kinter is also Professor and Chair in the department of Atmospheric, Oceanic, and Earth Sciences of the College of Science. He is affiliated with the Climate Dynamics Ph.D. Program, having responsibilities for curriculum development and teaching undergraduate and graduate courses on climate change, as well as advising Ph.D. students. After earning his doctorate in geophysical fluid dynamics at Princeton University in 1984, Dr. Kinter served as a National Research Council Associate at NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, and as a faculty member of the University of Maryland prior to helping to create COLA. Dr. Kinter has served on many national review panels for both scientific research programs and supercomputing programs for computational climate modeling.

Areas of Expertise/Interest:

  • Atmospheric Processes
  • Atmospheric Science
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Langevin, Mark S., Ph.D.
Senior Fellow and Adjunct Professor
Schar School of Policy and Government
Tel. 202-744-0072

Dr. Langevin is a political scientist and specializes in energy policy formation studies. He teaches in the International Commerce and Policy program at the Schar School.

In addition to his scholarship, he is a senior advisor to Horizon Client Access and provides policy analysis and political risk assessments to some of the largest private sector energy companies in the world with a focus on Brazil and Latin America. Currently, Dr. Langevin is investigating energy shifts and transitions in comparative perspective. He is also a former international advisor to the Brazilian Cotton Producers Association (ABRAPA) and Public Services International (PSI). He publishes on a regular basis for the Journal of Environmental Politics, the London School of Economics and Politics blog, the Inter-American Dialogue’s Latin America Energy Advisor, Journal of Energy Security, the Labor Studies Journal, and the Review of Renewable Energy Law and Policy. Dr. Langevin received his Ph.D. in Political Science, a M.A. in Latin American Studies from the University of Arizona and a B.A. from The Evergreen State College in Olympia, Washington.

Areas of Expertise/Interest:

  • Oil and Gas Value Chains and Public Policy
  • Biofuel Policy
  • General and Transmission Policies
  • Solar and Wind Power Policies
  • Environmental Licensing Policy
  • Energy Shifts and Transition
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LaPorte, Todd
Associate Professor

Dr. LaPorte’s current research interests include climate change adaptation policy and governance, organizational and social resiliency.  He has also worked on governance and the use and impacts of networked information technologies, for which he has received NSF and Pew Foundation support, public attitudes to technology and homeland security, with DHS funding, critical infrastructure protection, and organizational responses to extreme events, such as 9/11 and Hurricane Katrina. His most recent major publication in this area is as contributor to and co-editor of Seeds of Disaster, Roots of Response:  How Private Action Can Reduce Public Vulnerability, with Philip Auerswald, Lewis M. Branscomb, and Erwann Michel-Kerjan, Cambridge University Press, 2006.

Before coming to George Mason, La Porte was a member of the Faculty of Technology, Policy and Management at the Delft University of Technology in the Netherlands, where he was associate professor. From 1989 to 1995 La Porte was an analyst at the Office of Technology Assessment, a research office of the U.S. Congress where he worked on the role of wireless telecommunications and the National Information Infrastructure, international trade in telecommunications services and U.S. policy, and international defense industrial cooperation and the arms trade.

Areas of Expertise/Interest:

  • Energy Policy
  • Environmental Policy
  • Public Administration
  • Science and Technology Policy
  • Climate Change Adaptation
  • Energy and Climate Policy
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Tonya E. Thornton, Ph.D., MPPA

Principal and Owner Delta Point Solutions, LLC

tonya.e.thornton@gmail.com | (662) 341.8827 (p)

Dr. Tonya E. Thornton is a Principal and Founder of Delta Point Solutions, LLC, an interdisciplinary, social, policy, and administrative sciences consulting firm that utilizes innovative research rooted in performance management and operational modeling. Her firm offers subject matter expertise in community resiliency, critical infrastructure, emergency management, and grid security. Prior to establishing her firm, Dr. Thornton was the Director of Grants at George Mason University’s Schar School of Policy and Government, where she was also a Research Assistant Professor in the Master of Public Administration program and Coordinator for its Emergency Management and Homeland Security graduate certificate.

As a scholar, Dr. Thornton’s research portfolio has included securing contracts from the Sandia National Laboratories, Virginia Department of Emergency Management, DOD, NHTSA, NOAA, DHS, and FEMA with to date funding approximating $6 million. Dr. Thornton has also published her efforts in the Review of Policy Research, Journal of Emergency Management, and the American Journal of Public Health. She has co-authored edited volumes Managing Challenges for the Flint Water Crisis (2021) and The Role of Law Enforcement in Emergency Management and Homeland Security (2021) and has a book chapter in The Future of Disaster Management in the U.S.: Rethinking Legislation, Policy, and Finance (2016). She was also an editor for the National Academy of Public Administration and American Society for Public Administration’s Memos to National Leaders (2016). As an active member of her field, Dr. Thornton serves as a Co-Chair for the American Society for Public Administration’s Pandemic Task Forces and a Viewpoint Associate Editor for Public Administration Review, the premiere journal for public administration, which focuses on connecting scholars with communities of practice.

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Terman, Jessica
Assistant Professor Public and International Affairs Department
775-682-7770 (P)

Dr. Jessica Terman is an Associate Professor in the Schar School of Policy and Government at George Mason University where she teaches courses in public administration and research methods. Prior to joining the Schar School, she spent two years as a faculty member at the University of Nevada. She received her PhD in Public Administration from the Florida State University and her BA in Policy from the University of California at Santa Cruz. Her research focuses on implementation issues in public management. She is particularly interested in the tools of third-party governance such as the use of intergovernmental grants and contractors. Her most recent work looks at the state and local government use of energy efficiency and conservation policy. She has also published on bureaucratic policymaking and procurement activities in the context of state government.

Areas of Expertise/Interest:

  • Energy efficiency and conservation projects at the state and local level
  • Program evaluation
  • Procurement and contract management consulting of energy project development and implementation
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Shokri, Umud, Ph.D.
Visiting Senior Fellow

Umud is a Washington-based energy strategist and foreign policy advisor and author of US Energy Diplomacy in the Caspian Sea Basin: Changing Trends Since 2001.  Umud holds a Ph.D. in International Relations. He comes with extensive expertise and professional experience in global energy market studies, energy security, the geopolitics of climate change, industrial policy for clean energy, as well as foreign policy in the context of climate change and energy transition. His primary research interests lie in energy diplomacy and energy transition, U.S. energy policy, the geopolitics of energy, Iran-Turkey relations, as well as Iran-Russia relations, the Caspian Sea region, Central Asia and the GCC.

He has written about the geopolitics of energy and natural gas, political economy of hydrocarbon states, sustainable cities and mobility, the pace and trajectory of energy transition, the geopolitics of US sanctions against Iran oil exports, and the geopolitics of energy in Europe, the Eastern Mediterranean, Middle East, Central Asia, and Caspian Sea Region. Umud has published numerous articles in various journals, including Energy & Environment, Energy Intelligence, Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, Middle East Policy, National Interest, Attaqa, Oil & Gas Journal, Atlantic Council, Gulf International Forum, Jamestown Foundation, Springer, Palgrave Macmillan Publishing, among others. A frequently sought-after expert, he has appeared in international media outlets, such as Aljazeera, Sky News Arabia, Asharq News, Alghad TV, Alhurra, and others.

Verrastro, Frank
Visiting Senior Fellow

Frank Verrastro is a visiting senior fellow with the Center for Energy Science and Policy in the Schar School of Policy and Government at George Mason University. Additionally, he is a senior adviser with the Energy Security and Climate Change Program at the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS).  From 2017 to 2020, he was senior vice president and trustee fellow with the Energy and National Security Program at CSIS. From 2012 to 2017, he held the James R. Schlesinger Chair for Energy and Geopolitics. Prior to that (2003 to 2012), he served as director of the CSIS Energy and National Security Program. His extensive energy and management experience spans over four decades in energy policy, operations, and project management positions in both the U.S. government and the private sector. Mr. Verrastro holds a B.S. in biology/chemistry from Fairfield University, a master’s degree from Harvard University, and he completed the executive management program at the Yale Graduate School of Business and Management.

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Chow, Ed
Visiting Senior Fellow

Ed Chow is a visiting senior fellow with the Center for Energy Science and Policy in the Schar School of Policy and Government at George Mason University. He is also a senior associate in the Energy Security and Climate Change Program at the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS). He spent 20 years with Chevron Corporation in headquarter and overseas assignments, including head of international external relations and country manager in China. Chow is a graduate of Ohio University with a bachelor’s degree in economics and a master’s degree in international affairs. 

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Mirtchev, Alexander 
Distinguished Visiting Professor

Dr. Alexander V. Mirtchev is a distinguished visiting professor at the Schar School of Policy and Government at George Mason University. He also serves as a vice-chair of the Atlantic Council, where he is a member of the Board of Directors, the Executive and Strategy Committees, as well as the advisory council of the Scowcroft Center for Strategy and Security. Mirtchev was a Senior Fellow and member of the Wilson National Cabinet at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars where he is a founding member of the Council to the Kissinger Institute on China and the U.S. He served as a Vice President of the Royal United Services Institute for Defense and Security, RUSI, the UK global security think tank, and was also the Executive Chairman of RUSI International. 

Photo of Alexander V. Mirtchev