Sander van der Leeuw

External Faculty Fellow

Anarcheologist and historian, Prof. Sander van der Leeuw has been specializing in the long-term interactions between humans and their environments. He is a pioneer in the application of the Complex Adaptive Systems (CAS) approach to socio-environmental challenges, technology and innovation. As coordinator of the ARCHAEOMEDES interdisciplinary research program (1991-2000) using the CAS perspective on socio-natural interactions and environmental problems in S. Europe – the first of its 
kind worldwide. Co-director of the ISCOM project on invention and innovation from a CAS perspective (2003-2007). In both projects modeling played an important role, despite the limited technical means available at the time. After teaching positions in Amsterdam, Leyden, Cambridge and Paris (Sorbonne), he became founding director of Arizona State University’s School of Human Evolution and Social Change (2003-2011) and Dean of its School of Sustainability (2010-2013). Currently he is co-director of the ASU-SFI Center for Biosocial Complex Systems. External Professor of the Santa Fe Institute (since 2001) and Corresponding Member of the Royal Dutch Academy of Arts and Sciences (since 1995) he held a Chair at the Institut Universitaire de France (2003-2008). In 2012, he was awarded the title "Champion of the Earth for Science and Innovation" by UNEP.

Research Projects