Benedict Colombi

About Benedict Colombi

Benedict J. Colombi, Ph.D. is Faculty Director of the University of Arizona’s Graduate Interdisciplinary Programs (GIDPs) and Associate Professor of American Indian Studies and Affiliate Associate Professor of the School of Anthropology, School of Geography and Development, and School of Natural Resources and Environment. He also holds a Faculty Appointment with the Institute of Environment, a center for disciplinary and interdisciplinary environmental and climate change research at the University of Arizona. He is the Past Program Chair of the American Anthropological Association (AAA), Anthropology & Environment section, Past Faculty Fellow with The Udall Center for Studies in Public Policy, and is a Fellow with The Society for Applied Anthropology (SfAA). In 2014, he served as a U.S. Fulbright Scholar conducting ethnographic fieldwork with Indigenous communities along Russia’s Kamchatka Peninsula.           

His area of specialization lies at the interface of complex human-environmental problems (i.e. energy, water, agriculture, climate, fisheries, etc.). Recent publications include the book (Colombi and Brooks 2012), Keystone Nations: Indigenous Peoples and Salmon across the North Pacific (Advanced Seminar Series, School for Advanced Research Press) and a number of articles and chapters, including long-term and engaged research with the Nez Perce Tribe (Nimiipuu) about large dams, salmon, and the regional economy in the Columbia River basin. He also pursues interests in expanding his research to include Southwestern Indigenous people and watersheds (Colombi 2010; Colombi 2014; Pasqualetti et al. 2016); complimented with field studies of local-Indigenous resources/management in the United States, Canada, Russia (Thom, Colombi, Degai 2016), Iceland, Norway (Ween and Colombi 2013), Japan, and Mexico.

2010/10/18 - University of Kansas
Nation Building Through Salmon: The Nez Perce Tribe and Indigenous People as World Citizens
For more information please see the poster or visit the event website.

2009/10/01 - Kyoto, Japan
Water, Cultural Diversity and Global Environmental Change: Emerging Trends, Sustainable Futures?
Dr Colombi presented his research and most recent publication at the 2009 United Nations meeting in Kyoto Japan.  The poster was on display with the United Nations Educational Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), International Hydrological Programme.
For more information please see the poster or visit the conference website.

Dr Colombi's personal Web Site 
School of Anthropology 
School of Natural Resources and Environment
Institute of the Environment
School for Advanced Research

Areas of Study

Indigenous resource management, sustainability, and globalization.

Benedict Colombi's picture

Contact Information

Benedict Colombi
Telephone: (520) 621-2269
Fax: (520) 621-7952
Office: Harvill 237B
Office Hours: Monday and Thursday 1pm to 2pm and by appointment


Ph.D., 2006, Washington State University 

M.A., 2001, University of Idaho

B.A., 1992, University of Colorado

Dissertation Title

The Nez Perce Tribe vs. Elite-Directed Development in the Lower Snake River Basin: The Struggle to Breach the Dams and Save the Salmon

Courses Taught

Non-Western Cultures and Civilizations - Many Nations of Native America

Research Design and Methodology

Natural Resource Management in Native Communities

Interdisciplinary Research: Theory and Methods

Catalog Courses by Faculty

College of Social and Behavioral Sciences