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Associate Professor of Sociology and Environmental Studies
Chair, Department of Sociology
Sage 4611
SIRT Affiliate

Research Interests: Community, Land Use, Access

Van Auken has been involved in a variety of sustainability related efforts since coming to UWO in 2007. He has served on the planning committees for Earth Charter Community Summit and Earth Week, and helped organize particular events for these events. He has taught classes every year for and participated in the programmatic activities of the Environmental Studies program throughout his tenure and led numerous sustainability-related field trips to places such as Rosendale Dairy, Cattleana Ranch, Growing Power, Walnut Way Conservation Corp., Urban Ecology Center, the Aldo Leopold Foundation (ALF) and the Aldo Leopold Shack.

Van Auken helped to secure ALF’s partnership in the 2019 International Symposium for Science and Natural Resources, for which he wrote the proposal and which was awarded to UWO. He co-founded the Creating a Stronger Community Contest, which help provide seed funding for several sustainability-oriented programs/organizations, such as Growing Oshkosh, Cycling Without Age, and Oshkosh Food Cooperative, for which he remains a founding board member. Much of Van Auken’s research is sustainability-oriented and has been published in journals such as Human Ecology, Local Environment, Landscape Research, and Practicing Planner.