Dr. Thomas Homer-Dixon

Thomas Homer-Dixon holds the CIGI Chair of Global Systems at the Balsillie School of International Affairs at the University of Waterloo. At the University of Waterloo, he is a Professor in the Faculty of Environment, with a cross-appointment to the Political Science. Between 2009 and 2014, he was founding director of the Waterloo Institute for Complexity and Innovation.
 
Born in Victoria, BC, Canada, he received his Ph.D. from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in international relations, defense and arms control policy, and conflict theory in 1989.
 
Since joining the University of Waterloo in 2008, his research has focused on threats to global security in the 21st century, including economic instability, climate change, and energy scarcity. He also studies how people, organizations, and societies can better resolve their conflicts and innovate in response to complex problems. His work is highly interdisciplinary, drawing on political science, economics, environmental studies, geography, cognitive science, social psychology, and complex systems theory.
 
He teaches undergraduate and graduate courses on topics ranging from environmental security to international relations and complexity theory.  
 
Dr. Homer-Dixon’s books include: The Upside of Down - Catastrophe, Creativity, and the Renewal of Civilization , which won Canada’s 2006 National Business Book Award;  and The Ingenuity Gap , which won the 2001 Governor General’s Non-fiction Award.
 
His academic writing has appeared in leading journals, including Journal of Peace Research, and Population and Development Review . He has written for non- academic audiences in Scientific American , The New York Times , and the Financial Times . He now writes regularly for the Globe and Mail.  
 
A widely sought speaker, Dr. Homer-Dixon has delivered addresses on his research to academic and general audiences around the world. He has also consulted to senior levels of government in Canada, the United States, and the United Kingdom.

Session:  Building Resilience in a Turbulent World: Choices and Pathways for Southern Ontario