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David Yu

David Yu

Assistant Professor // Political Science

Office and Contact

Room: BRNG 2216B


Phone: (765) 494-4174

Assistant Professor of Political Science and Civil Engineering

Ph.D., Sustainability, Arizona State University, 2015
M.P.P., Public Policy, National University of Singapore
B.A.S. Engineering Science, Simon Fraser University


Current CV



Public Policy
Environmental Politics


Research Summary

David’s field of study is institutions and the environment, collective action and the commons, and resilience of norms or institutions. Specifically, he focuses on the resilience of highly-engineered social-ecological systems (SES) or coupled natural and human systems (CNH) to unexpected, emergent shocks, and how biophysical and institutional factors interact to shape the dynamics of such coupled systems. He examines these interactions to understand the conditions for building sustainable communities from local to global scales in the face of global change.

David brings diverse knowledge sets together to engage in this research: systems thinking and modeling, collective action and the commons, and human behavior, among others. His research methods include mathematical and computational modeling, case study analysis, and behavioral experiments.

David's recent and on-going research projects include exploring the effects of infrastructure design on commons dilemmas and the dynamics of irrigated agriculture SES, investigating the design of learning process that leads to successful resilience-based management of irrigation SES, and tracing how social connectedness influences transformative capacity of community forestry SES under global change.