John Paul Jones III was named Dean of UA’s College of Social and Behavioral Sciences in January 2010. Under his leadership, the College of SBS – “The People College” – has raised more than 13 million dollars, initiated new undergraduate and graduate degrees, and expanded community outreach.
Jones is a champion of interdisciplinary education and has helped support several new undergraduate and graduate programs – in areas such as International Security; Criminal Justice Studies; Environmental Studies; Geographical information systems Technology; eSociety; Global Studies; development Practice; Care, Health and Society; and Sports and Society – to better prepare students for the changing futures that await them, and to better serve the communities in which they will work and live.
Jones believes that public, land-grant institutions such as the UA have a responsibility to share their discoveries and expertise with the community through public education and outreach. To that end, Jones initiated “SBS Week,” a series of community presentations, panel discussions, film viewings, book readings, and other activities. In this series, SBS has focused on immigration, the 10-year anniversary of 9/11, and the 2012 election. Last spring, SBS inaugurated a speaker series with the visit of world-renowned linguist and activist noam Chomsky. His two lectures were attended by more than 5,000 people.
Jones also led SBS to a new presence in downtown Tucson as part the UA’s collaborative renovation of the historic Roy Place Building at Stone and Pennington. Meanwhile, the People College’s new community partners include The Loft Cinema, the Downtown Tucson Partnership, the Tucson Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, and the Sandra Day O’Connor House in Phoenix. SBS also initiated the Desert Oasis Initiative, a program aimed at bringing greater awareness of the unique culture and natural history of the southern Arizona region.
Jones holds key service roles at the University of Arizona, including Chair of the Provost Search Advisory Committee, Chair of the Dean’s + development Committee, and member of the UA-UAF Relations Committee. Jones also served on the recent UA Presidential Search Committee.
Before being named Dean, Jones was Director of SBS’ School of Geography and development. His research centers on geographic methodology and the integration of spatial theory and social theory. Recently, he has studied the globalization of the civil society sector in Oaxaca, Mexico; the socio-political foundations of mosquito management in southern Arizona; and the co-productions of scientists and artists in areas of climate change, geovisualization, and bioart.
Jones has written more than 100 articles and book chapters, edited seven books, and received numerous research grants from the National Science Foundation. He is the past editor of his field’s flagship journal, the Annals of the Association of American Geographers.
Jones earned his doctorate in Geography from The Ohio State University in 1984. Before coming to the UA in 2003, he taught at the University of Kentucky, San Diego State University, and the University College Dublin as a visiting Fulbright Professor. He has held visiting appointments at the University of Nimegen in the Netherlands, the Universitat de Girona in Spain, and the London School of Economics.
To learn more, please visit my geography page here.