Board of Directors

Gordon H. Orians

National Academy of Sciences
Professor Emeritus of Biology
University of Washington College of Arts & Sciences

Gordon H. Orians

Professor Emeritus of Biology, University of Washington, Seattle, WA 98195, USA, received a BS in Zoology from the University of Wisconsin, Madison in June 1954, and a PhD in Zoology from the University of California, Berkeley, in August 1960. He was a professor at the University of Washington from 1960 to 1995, and Director of the UW's Institute for Environmental Studies from 1976 to 1986. He was elected to the National Academy of Sciences in 1989 and to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences in 1990. His most intensive research has focused on behavioral ecology of birds, dealing primarily with problems of habitat selection, mate selection and mating systems, selection of prey and foraging patches (foraging theory), and the relationships between ecology and social organization. He has also carried out research that explored the consequences for population dynamics and structure of ecological communities of rules developed in the field of behavioral ecology, particularly those relating to foraging behavior and habitat selection. Recently his research has focused on environmental aesthetics, the evolutionary roots of our strong emotion responses to components of the environment, such as landscapes, flowers, sunsets, and sounds. During much of his career he has been active in the science-policy interface. He served on the Science Advisory Board, of the U. S. Environmental Protection Agency. He chaired the Board on Environmental Studies and Toxicology of the National Research Council from 1997 to 2003 and served on many NRC study committees. He has served on boards of environmental organizations such as World Wildlife Fund-US and The Nature Conservancy.

Modified: 10/15/14