Brian Stone

Brian Stone


Professor, School of City and Regional Planning
PhD Program Director
Director, Urban Climate Lab
(404) 894-6488

View Stone's full C.V.


Brian Stone teaches in the areas of urban environmental planning, climate change, and planning history and theory. Stone's program of research is focused on the spatial drivers of urban environmental phenomena and is supported through funding from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the National Science Foundation, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. He is Director of the Urban Climate Lab at Georgia Tech. Stone's work on urbanization and climate change has been featured on CNN and National Public Radio, and in print media outlets such as Forbes and The Washington Post. He is author of the recently published book, The City and the Coming Climate: Climate Change in the Places We Live (Cambridge University Press), which received a Choice Outstanding Academic Title Award for 2012.  Stone holds degrees in environmental management and planning from Duke University and the Georgia Institute of Technology.

Educational Background

2001 - Ph.D. (City and Regional Planning), Georgia Institute of Technology

1996 - M.E.M (Environmental Management), Duke University

1993 - A.B. (English), Duke University


Environmental Planning

Climate and Health

Urban Design


Recent Publications

Stone, Brian, Vargo, Jason, Liu, Peng, Hu, Yongtao, Russell, Armistead. 2013. “Climate change adaptation through urban heat management in Atlanta, Georgia.” Environmental Science & Technology, 47: 7780-86.

Vargo, J., Habeeb, D. & Stone, B. 2013. The importance of land cover change across urban rural typologies for climate modeling. Journal of Environmental Management, 114: 243-52.

Stone, Brian. 2012. The City and the Coming Climate: Climate Change in the Places We Live.  New York: Cambridge University Press.

Vargo, Jason, Stone, Brian Jr., and Glanz, Karen. 2012. “Google Walkability: A New Tool for Local Planning and Public Health Research?" Journal of Physical Activity and Health, 9: 689-697

B. Stone, J. Vargo, and D. Habeeb. 2012. Managing Climate Change in Cities: Will Climate Action Plans Work? Landscape and Urban Planning, in 28(3): 263-271

Peng, Liu, Tsimpidi, Alexandra, Hu, Youngtao, Stone, Brian, Russell, Armistead, Nenes, Athanasios. 2012. “Differences Between Downscaling with Spectral and Grid Nudging Using WRF.” Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics, 12: 1191-1213.

Grabow, Maggie, Spak, Scott, Holloway, Tracey, Stone, Brian, Mednick, Adam, and Patz, Jonathan. 2011. “Air Quality and Health Benefits from Reduced Car Travel in the Midwestern United States.” Environmental Health Perspectives, 120: 68-76.

Stone B., Hess J. J., & Frumkin H. (2010). Urban Form and Extreme Heat Events: Are Sprawling Cities more Vulnerable to Climate Change than Compact Cities?. Environmental Health Perspectives doi:10.1289/ehp.0901879

Stone Jr, B. (2009). Land Use as Climate Change Mitigation. Environmental Science & Technology, 43, 9052-9056.doi:10.1021/es902150g

Stone Jr, B., Mednick, A., Holloway, T., & Spak, S. (2009). Mobile Source CO2 Mitigation Through Smart Growth Development and Vehicle Fleet Hybridization.Environmental Science & Technology, 43(6), 1704-1710. doi:10.1021/es8021655

Stone Jr, B. (2008). Climate Change and Place Roundtable Discussion. Places, 20(2), 68-73.

Stone Jr, B. (2008). Urban Sprawl and Air Quality in Large US Cities. Journal of Environmental Management, 86(4), 688-698. doi: 10.1016/j.jenvman.2006.12.034 

Stone Jr, B. (2007). Urban and Rural Temperature Trends in Proximity to Large U.S. Cities: 1951-2000. International Journal of Climatology 27(13), 1801-1807. doi:10.1002/joc.1555

Stone Jr, B., Mednick, A., Holloway, T., & Spak, S. (2007). Is Compact Growth Good for Air Quality? Journal of the American Planning Association, 73(4), 404-418. doi:10.1080/01944360708978521

Stone, Brian Jr. and Norman, John M. 2006. “Land Use Planning and Surface Heat Island Formation: A Parcel-Based Radiation Flux Approach”, in Atmospheric Environment, 40, p. 3561-3573.

Stone, Brian Jr. and Bullen, Jessica L. 2006. “Urban Form and Watershed Management: How Zoning Influences Stormwater Volumes”, in Environment and Planning: Part B, 33, p. 21-37.

Stone, Brian Jr. 2006. Physical Planning and Urban Heat Island Formation: How Cities Change Regional Climates, in Smart Growth and Climate Change: Regional Development, Infrastructure and Adaptation, M. Ruth (ed.), Northampton, MA: Edward Elgar, pp. 318-341.

Chi, Guangqing and Stone, Brian Jr. 2005. “Sustainable Transport Planning: Estimating the Ecological Footprint of Vehicle Travel in Future Years”, in Journal of Urban Planning and Development, 131, p. 170-180.

Stone, Brian Jr. 2005. “Urban Heat and Ozone Formation: An Emerging Role for Planners in the Climate Change Debate”, in Journal of the American Planning Association, 71, p. 13-25.

Funded Projects

Development of an Urban Heat Management Plan for Louisville, KY, Louisville Metro Government, 2014-2015

Impact of Climate-Responsive Design on Heat-Related Morbidity and Mortality in Large U.S. Cities: 2010-2050, U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 2010-2012

Measuring the Role of the Built Environment as an Effect Modifier of Climate Change and Mortality, U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 2009

Urban Sprawl and Excessive Heat Events, U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 2008

Atlantic Station Employee Health Study: Measures of the Built Environment , U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 2008

Modeling the Effects of Land Use and Technology Change on Future Air Quality in the Upper Midwestern United States, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, 2005-2008

Modeling the Effects of Landscape Change on Regional Vehicle Travel, Ozone Formation, and Remote Forest Effects, U.S. Forest Service, 2005


Recent Courses

CP 6012 Planning Theory and History | This course seeks to examine historic and contemporary debates over the role and function of planning and the implications of these debates for planning practice and to analyze the role and effectiveness of planning in resolving contemporary urban problems.  The management of urban growth, the alleviation of poverty, and the protection of environmental values all require a response in the midst of the dynamic interactions that occur in cities and regions. This course provides a comprehensive exposure to the challenges that planners have historically faced and to the alternative views developed to help us select an appropriate planning strategy grounded in our history and theory.  This course is required of all CRP students.

CP 6213 Urban Environmental Planning and Design | This course provides an introduction to the field of environmental planning and is structured as both a seminar and a practicum.  In the seminar component of the course, assigned readings and group discussions explore the potential for ecology to provide a general theoretical basis for urban planning.  The practicum component of the course consists of GIS lab sessions and a series of site visits designed to introduce students to a range of spatial analysis and remote sensing techniques that may be utilized to develop and incorporate ecological criteria into the physical plan making process.  This course is one of two required classes for students specializing in Environmental Planning.

CP 8823: Climate Change and the City | Argued to be the most enduring of all human inventions, the city has proven remarkably resilient in the face of catastrophic weather events, severe economic disruption, devastating human epidemics, and prolonged warfare.  Yet, as the longstanding environmental stability of urban regions is altered through climate change, the structure and management of the contemporary city must adapt to these changing conditions if it is to persist in a warming world.  To this end, this course explores the fundamental challenges to the city posed by climate change and the range of policy and design-based responses available to anticipate and respond to these challenges. The objectives of the course are to understand the physical mechanisms through which climate change is modifying urban environments and, in turn, how cities amplify these changes; to consider the range of current and proposed policy strategies to manage climate change in cities; and to examine and develop design-based tools for climate change adaptation at the urban scale.   

Dissertations Supervised

Elizabeth Keysar, April 2013, Implementing Sustainability in Large Public Organizations: Impacts of Bureaucracy, School of City and Regional Planning, Georgia Institute of Technology.

Jason Vargo, October 2012, Planning for the New Urban Climate: Interactions of Local Environmental Planning and Regional Extreme Heat, School of City and Regional Planning, Georgia Institute of Technology (Chair).

Elise Barrella, June 2012, Strategic planning for a sustainable transportation system: A swot-based framework for assessment and implementation guidance for transportation agencies, School of Civil and Environmental Engineering, Georgia Institute of Technology.

Gretchen T. Goldman, May 2011, Characterization and Impact of Ambient Air Pollutant Measurement Error in Time-Series Epidemiologic Studies, School of Civil and Environmental Engineering, Georgia Institute of Technology.

Mark R. Stevens, May 2005, Effectiveness Beliefs of Planning Practitioners, Department of Urban and Regional Planning, University of Wisconsin-Madison.

Paul R. Denholm, May 2004, Environmental and Policy Analysis of Renewable Enabling Technologies, Nelson Institute for Environmental Studies, University of Wisconsin-Madison.

Paul J. Meier, May 2002, Life-Cycle Assessment of Electricity Generation Systems and Applications for Climate Change Policy Analysis, Nelson Institute for Environmental Studies, University of Wisconsin-Madison.

Recent Theses and Masters Research Papers Supervised

Rachel Cox (2013). Savannah’s Harbor Expansion Program: A Question of Related Growth.

Lauren Cardoni  (2013). The Atlanta Beltline: The Beginning of an Integrated Network.

John Rhodes  (2013). Development Potential vs. Development Regulation.

Elizabeth Ward (2013). Urban Agriculture and the Sustainable City.

Audrey Leous (2012). Respondent Beliefs on Transportation and the Environment.

Allison Buchwach (2012). Using Public Spaces Freely.

Thomas Caiafa  (2011). An Evaluation of TOD Opportunities Along MARTA’s North Line.

Matt DeVeau (2011). Strategies to Address the Climatic Barriers to Walkable, Transit-Oriented Communities in Florida. SCRP Master's Thesis Option Paper.

David Barg. (2011). Optimization of Distributed Generation Using Sustianable Energy Technologies in California. SCRP Master's Thesis Option Paper.

Joseph Staubes (2010). How Effective are Complete Streets at Increasing Bking and Walking? SCRP Master's Thesis Option Paper.

Ermis Zayas (2010). Tightening the Spigot: Water Conservation Implementation in the Atlanta Metrpolitan Area. SCRP Master's Thesis Option Paper.