Alan Townsend

Dean, Nicholas School of the Environment

Townsend's research focuses on how ecosystems interact with a changing global environment, especially in tropical regions, and why this matters to human health and welfare. He is the author of more than 100 peer-reviewed publications and served as a lead author on the recently released U.S. National Climate Assessment.  He has held leadership positions at university, national and international levels, including recent terms as a professor of ecology and evolutionary biology and a fellow of the Institute of Arctic and Alpine Research at the University of Colorado at Boulder, director of the University of Colorado at Boulder’s Environmental Studies Program, and director of the Division of Environmental Biology at the National Science Foundation. He also has been active in engaging the public about environmental challenges. He was named a Google Science Communication Fellow in 2011 and an Aldo Leopold Leadership Fellow in 2001, both of which are programs that encourage and train scientists to communicate with wider audiences. He currently serves as the co-chair of the Leopold Leadership Program and blogs on a personal site called State Factors. Townsend received his bachelor’s degree from Amherst College in 1988, and his Ph.D. in biological sciences from Stanford University in 1994.

Academic Leadership

Dean, School of Medicine
Dean, Fuqua School of Business
Dean of the Graduate School/Vice Provost for Graduate Education
Dean, Nicholas School of the Environment
Dean, School of Nursing & Vice Chancellor for Nursing Affairs
Dean, Divinity School
Dean, Pratt School of Engineering
Dean, Sanford School of Public Policy
Dean, School of Law
Dean of Arts and Sciences
Dean and Vice Provost, Undergraduate Education
Vice Provost, Faculty Diversity and Faculty Development
Vice Provost for Library Affairs
Vice Provost for the Arts
Executive Vice Provost for Finance and Administration
Vice President and Vice Provost, Global Strategy and Programs
Vice Provost for Interdisciplinary Studies
Vice Provost for Duke Kunshan University and China Initiatives
Vice Provost and Director, Innovation & Entrepreneurship Initiative
Vice Provost for Research
Vice Provost for Academic Affairs

University Administration

Vice President and General Counsel
Vice President, Administration
Vice President, Information Technology and Chief Information Officer
Vice President, Student Affairs
Vice President, Facilities
Vice President, Office for Institutional Equity
Vice President and University Secretary
Vice President, Public Affairs and Government Relations
Vice President, Alumni Affairs and Development
Vice President, Finance
Vice President and Director of Athletics
Vice President, Durham and Regional Affairs
President, DUMAC