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Nigel Forrest

Nigel Forrest

Manager, Sustainable Local Food Economies and Enterprises Lab, School of Sustainability

School of Sustainability
Arizona State University
PO Box 875502
Tempe, AZ 85287-5502


  • Senior Sustainability Scientist, Julie Ann Wrigley Global Institute of Sustainability
  • Manager, Sustainable Local Food Economies and Enterprises Lab, School of Sustainability
  • Postdoctoral Research Fellow, School of Sustainability/School for the Future of Innovation in Society


Nigel Forrest is a post-doctoral research fellow in the School of Sustainability and School for the Future of Innovation in Society, and manager of the Sustainable Local Food Economies and Enterprises Lab at Arizona State University. He earned his PhD in Sustainability in 2015. His research is strongly solution-oriented, seeking to identify, transfer, and scale evidence-supported transformational sustainability solutions that advance sustainable local food economies. He is especially interested in cooperatives, and mission-oriented worker cooperatives in particular, as a transformational form of enterprise uniquely capable of redressing the underlying divers of unsustainability of inequality and diminished democracy. His work is generally situated in “living labs”, building networks with local food economy actors and engaging in collaborative “experiments” that build capacity to develop, implement, and learn from innovative solutions.


  • PhD, Sustainability, Arizona State University, 2015
  • MS, Sustainability, Arizona State University, 2011
  • Post Graduate Diploma, Information Technology, Stathclyde University, 1988
  • BS, Geology (Honors), University of Glasgow, 1984


Journal Articles


Forrest, N., Z. Stein and A. D. Wiek. 2019. Water-independent residential properties as a transformational solution to achieve water sustainability in desert cities?. Journal of Cleaner Production 214(Mar):1038-1049. DOI: 10.1016/j.jclepro.2018.12.309. (link )


Luederitz, C., N. Schapke, A. D. Wiek, D. J. Lang, M. Bergmann, J. J. Bos, S. Burch, A. Davies, J. Evans, A. Konig, M. A. Farrelly, N. Forrest, N. Frantzeskaki, R. B. Gibson, B. Kay, D. Loorbach, K. McCormick, O. Parodi, F. Rauschmayer, U. Schneiderwind, P. J. Vergrag, H. von Wehnden and F. R. Westley. 2017. Learning through evaluation – A tentative evaluative scheme for sustainability transition experiments. Journal of Cleaner Production 169(Dec):61-76. DOI: 10.1016/j.jclepro.2016.09.005. (link )


Culotta, D., A. D. Wiek and N. Forrest. 2016. Selecting and coordinating local and regional climate change interventions. Environment and Planning C: Politics and Space 34(7):1241-1266. DOI: 10.1177/0263774X15607475. (link )


Forrest, N. and A. D. Wiek. 2015. Success factors and strategies for sustainability transitions of small-scale communities – evidence from a cross-case analysis. Environmental Innovation and Societal Transitions 17(Dec):22-40. DOI: 10.1016/j.eist.2015.05.005. (link )


Forrest, N. and A. D. Wiek. 2014. Learning from success -- toward evidence-informed sustainability transitions in communities. Environmental Innovation and Societal Transitions 12:68-88. DOI: 10.1016/j.eist.2014.01.003. (link )


Gonzales, V., N. Forrest and N. Balos. 2013. Refugee farmers and the social enterprise model in the American Southwest. Journal of Community Positive Practices 4:32-54. (link )


Forrest, N. and E. Williams. 2010. Life cycle environmental implications of residential swimming pools. Environmental Scince & Technology 44(14):5601-5607. DOI: /10.1021/es100422s. (link )

Book Chapters


Wiek, A. D., B. Kay and N. Forrest. 2017. 14. Worth the trouble? An evaluation scheme for urban sustainability transition labs (USTL) and application to the USTL in Phoenix, Arizona. Pp. 227-256 In: Frantzeskaki, N., V. Castan Broto, L. Coenen and D. Loorbach eds., Urban Sustainability Transitions. Routledge. ISBN: 9780415784184.

Wiek, A. D., C. Kuzdas, R. W. Foley, L. Withycombe Keeler, N. Forrest and B. Kay. 2017. Sustainability assessments designed for multiple functions: Five cases about water resources, nanotechnologies and communities. Pp. 127-145 In: Gibson, R. ed., Sustainability Assessment: Applications and Opportunities. Routledge. ISBN: 978-1138802742.


Wiek, A. D., M. J. Bernstein, R. W. Foley, M. C. Cohen, N. Forrest, C. Kuzdas, B. Kay and L. Withycombe Keeler. 2016. Operationalizing competencies in higher education for sustainable development. Pp. 241-260 In: Barth, M., G. Michelsen, M. Rieckmann and I. Thomas eds., Routledge Handbook of Higher Education for Sustainable Development. Routledge. London and New York. ISBN: 9780415727303.


Forrest, N. 2014. The United Nations Commission on Sustainable Development. In: Michalos, A. C. ed., Encyclopedia of Quality of Life Research. Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht. ISBN: 978-94-007-0752-8.



Wiek, A. D. and N. Forrest. 2013. Solution-oriented transition research in small-scale communities. Presentation at the 4th International Conference on Sustainability Transitions, June 20, 2013, ETH Zurich, Switzerland.