The Urban & Environmental Policy Department at Occidental College invites applications for a teacher and scholar at the Assistant Professor level in Urban Data Analysis and Applied Methods. The position will begin August 2019.

We are interested in candidates who understand urban and environmental problems as deeply linked with increased inequality and how these stresses exacerbate existing social, economic, and political divisions. Policymakers at local, state, national, and international levels face the challenge of developing policies that address existing inequities while simultaneously ensuring a long-term approach to the environmental and economic sustainability that has equity and democratic governance at its core.

We seek candidates who bring experience and commitment to creative and applied methods, particularly quantitative approaches, in teaching and in research.  We invite candidates from a range of disciplines, including geography, applied economics, sociology, public policy, and urban planning. Candidates are expected to hold the Ph.D. degree or terminal degree in their field. We are also open to considering non-traditional candidates with extensive professional and community experience with demonstrated research and teaching but who may not have a Ph.D. or other terminal degree.

Our new colleague will be expected to teach our students to understand and apply quantitative and spatial approaches to understanding race, place, poverty, inequality, and policy in the context of a global political economy. We seek an effective and engaged teacher able to explain the relationships between local and global aspects of our economic and environmental problems and how, through quantitative and spatial analysis, inform practical solutions at the community, local, state, national, and global levels.  Our new hire will teach our students to understand and apply quantitative and spatial approaches to understanding race, place, poverty, and inequality in the context of a global political economy. The ideal candidate should be able to teach our existing urban data analysis course (UEP 305) that can be tailored to his/her own area of expertise. The course satisfies the major’s methods requirement as a required course for the major that also counts as a College math-science requirement. While the area of specialization is open, their teaching and research approaches should help students learn to document and analyze urban processes, problems, and policies using quantitative data to identify and communicate patterns of urban inequality. This could include understanding the size and significance of urban problems such as but not limited to housing and lending discrimination, employment or wage inequality, transportation equity, community development, water quality, green space, and air pollution. Students within the UEP major are expected to complete a year-long senior comprehensive research project, so our ideal candidate should be able to teach students to explore basic research methods using quantitative data. They should also have an existing research program with a plan to integrate undergraduate students into their research.

Additionally, they will teach our required intro course Environment and Society (UEP 101) and participate in team-teaching the Senior Policy Seminar (UEP 410/UEP 411), a year-long capstone senior research project that frequently involves students conducting research for a community-based client organization. Our new colleague will have the freedom to design and revise his/her/their own courses, but we encourage candidates to look at the course descriptions, including  UEP 101 and UEP 305, to become familiar with our approach to teaching.  A description of our department, current course offerings, and course syllabi are available on our website at:

The successful candidate will join a dynamic and growing interdisciplinary department in an urban liberal arts college located in Los Angeles. In addition to four full-time faculty members, the department includes affiliated faculty from other departments and practitioners who serve as adjunct faculty who teach a variety of applied courses.

This position expands the Department’s student learning and research opportunities through courses and research related to urban and environmental topics, including poverty, labor and labor markets, racial justice, and immigration. We are particularly interested in candidates who can help us develop programs and initiatives that contribute to applied quantitative and spatial methods as part of the College’s effort to build quantitative literacy as part of the College’s core curriculum.

Our new colleague will help us further the Department and College’s goals related to community-based learning and research and contribute to community-engaged efforts on and off-campus. Ideal candidates will be committed to community-engaged teaching and research and engage with the Urban & Environmental Policy Institute (UEPI), the Department’s applied research center that supports faculty research and community-engagement efforts campus wide.

We seek candidates who will contribute to our socioeconomically, ethnically, culturally, and intellectually diverse academic environment through their teaching, research, and/or service. US News has consistently ranked Occidental as one of the liberal arts colleges most committed to diversity. We rank near the top of very selective liberal arts colleges in terms of the proportion of students with Pell Grants.

The complete application will include the following:

  1. A cover letter of interest that demonstrates a commitment to academic excellence in a diverse urban liberal arts environment. The letter will reflect your interest in teaching at Occidental and a discussion of your teaching and research experience and interests.
  2. Curriculum Vitae
  3. A statement of your research agenda
  4. Statement of teaching philosophy and pedagogy that includes discussion of your demonstrated commitment to and future plans for teaching and mentoring students, particularly underrepresented students.
  5. List and brief descriptions of courses you would teach at Oxy
  6. Statement about how you will support and enhance the Departmental and College priorities related to quantitative literacy and community engaged teaching and research
  7. Asample of your scholarly work
  8. Three confidential letters of recommendation, with at least one attesting to experience and/or potential for teaching
  9. If selected for an interview, we will request the following:
    a. Evaluations of undergraduate teaching or other evidence of teaching effectiveness
    b. Sample syllabus for Urban Data Analysis (UEP 305)

All materials are due by 5:00 on Friday, October 19, 2018. Applicants should submit their application as an electronic file to Sylvia Chico at We will contact semi-finalists in early November for interviews in late November. Finalists will be invited in mid-December for an on campus interview during late January – early February 2019.

We strongly urge underrepresented candidates, particularly women and persons of color to apply. The College is committed to academic excellence in a diverse community and supporting interdisciplinary and multicultural academic programs that provide a gifted and diverse group of students with an educational experience that prepares them for leadership in a pluralistic world. Occidental College is an Equal Opportunity Employer and does not unlawfully discriminate against employees or applicants on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, pregnancy, breastfeeding or related medical condition, national origin, ancestry, citizenship, age, marital status, physical disability, mental disability, medical condition, genetic characteristic or information, sexual orientation, military and veteran status, or any other characteristic protected by State or Federal Law.

For information on the Urban and Environmental Policy Department, including current course offerings and course syllabi, visit our website at and the relevant links below.  Inquiries about the position or the department can be directed to Martha Matsuoka, Associate Professor, Urban and Environmental Policy Department at

Relevant Links: 

Our Program

Course Offerings and Requirements

UEP 101 Environment & Society – syllabi sample

UEP 305 Urban Data Analysis – syllabi sample

UEP Course Syllabi