Erin Upton, Ph.D.

Social Science Researcher & Writer
Portland, Oregon

About Me

I love to dig deep in the exploration and storytelling of relationships between people and place. 

I am passionate about understanding the human dimensions of complex environmental challenges.

I am committed to applied interdisciplinary approaches, the co-production of knowledge, and elevating diverse community voices.


My research interests include larger themes about resilience, transformation, community, and connection. More specifically I am curious about climate change resiliency, social-ecological systems dynamics,

decision-making about water and land, and sustainable futures in working landscapes.

I have a Ph.D. from Portland State University's School of the Environment and Department of Environmental Science & Management in Portland, Oregon. My research examined water and climate change resilience in agricultural wine regions. I have conducted environmental and social science research in North America, South Africa, and Australia, interviewing over 100 community members. I've presented my research in Australia, the U.S., Canada, and Brazil. 


I hold a Master’s degree in Landscape Architecture from the University of British Columbia. I have worked as a landscape architect in New York City and in the wine industry in Oregon. I am a Fellow of the National Science Foundation Integrative Graduate Education and Research Trainee (IGERT) program, and a Fellow of the Sasakawa Young Leaders Fellowship Fund (SYLFF) for International Research. 



Associate Consultant, Research & Evaluation

Dialogues in Action

Portland, Oregon



4 Revolutions Co-Creative Ecosystem Group

Food/Water/Resources/Energy & Climate Change

Global Project- North American Team

2019- 2020

Social Science Researcher

Clackamas County Soil & Water Conservation District




Social Science Research Assistant

Portland State University

Institute for Sustainable Solutions

Clackamas River Water Providers

Clackamas County Water Environment Services




Direct Sales/Operations Manager

Anne Amie Vineyards




Landscape Architect

Dirtworks PC

New York City



Programs Administrator

American Academy in Rome

New York City


Parks and Nature Bond Oversight Committee Member 2021

Metro Regional Government


Technical Advisory Committee Member 2020-2021

Clackamas County Soil and Water Conservation District 


2020- Ph.D. Earth, Environment, & Society

Portland State University, Oregon


2007- Master of Landscape Architecture

University of British Columbia, Canada


2006- Landscape Architecture (exchange)

Wageningen University, Netherlands


2001- Bachelor of Arts

University of Oregon, Oregon


2000- Political Science (exchange)

University of Lyon, France


National Science Foundation (NSF) Integrated Graduate Education Research Trainee (IGERT) Fellow

Portland State University

Ecosystem Services for Urbanizing Regions

Ryoichi Sasakawa Young Leaders Fellowship Fund (SYLFF) Fellow & Sylff Research Abroad Grant Recipient

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