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Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) in Geography and Environmental Engineering

Offered By: Department of Environmental Health and Engineering

Onsite | Full-Time | 5 years

About the PhD in Geography and Environmental Engineering Program

A PhD student in the Geography and Environmental Engineering program will explore the current state of knowledge in his or her field. Information and ideas developed by others are critically examined and placed in proper context.

Subject areas are identified that are important to achieving the goals of the discipline, but which have not been explored or developed. The student will propose new research to improve understanding in this key area. A research proposal should then outline, in an orderly and logical manner, how key questions are addressed. While pursuing these research hypotheses, the student must take time to consider alternative explanations for experimental observations, and devise new experiments that critically test assumptions and theories.

The student will learn to state problems clearly and solve them in a reliable and efficient manner. Whatever lines of reasoning one uses, one must be as sure as possible that the conclusions are correct, particularly since there is always some uncertainty in science and engineering. The student must think through their research plans to avoid unproductive activities. Because research involves managing time and resources, the PhD student is receiving excellent preparation for future professional work.

Students have the option to focus their study: Track in Environmental Sustainability, Resilience, and Health (ESRH).

Doctoral students in the Geography and Environmental Engineering doctoral program have the opportunity to learn from and collaborate with faculty from a wide variety of disciplines, including:

  • Chemistry
  • Air pollution and greenhouse gases
  • Energy systems
  • Public health
  • Water quality
  • Economic dimensions of environmental health
  • Anthropological dimensions of environmental health

PhD in Geography and Environmental Engineering Program Highlights

Fully Funded

Students are guaranteed tuition, health insurance, and stipend coverage for 5 years. 


Opportunities to work across departments in the Schools of Public Health, Engineering, and more


Help with academic writing and grant proposals embedded into coursework, with opportunities to learn from published faculty and peers


Teaching assistantships, training, and support for learning to teach, and opportunities for paid TA positions as well

What Can You Do With a Graduate Degree in Geography and Environmental Engineering?

  • Research or Teaching Faculty
  • Research Scientist
  • Environmental Engineer (water/wastewater engineer, hydrogeologist, ecologist)
  • Data Scientist
  • Postdoctoral Research

Curriculum for the PhD in Geography and Environmental Engineering

Browse an overview of the requirements for this PhD program in the JHU Academic Catalogue and explore all course offerings in the Whiting School Course Directory.

Admissions Requirements

For general admissions requirements, please visit the Graduate Admissions page.

Faculty Spotlights

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Associate Professor
Environmental Health and Engineering

Peter studies the chemical composition of gas particles in the air to improve our understanding of climate, air quality, and health impacts of pollutants.


man smiling standing in hallway

Paul ­ is a Bloomberg Distinguished Professor with joint appointments in the Department of Environmental Health and Engineering and the Carey Business School. He is known for his research on behavioral economics and the design and estimation of impacts of environmental programs.

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Associate Professor
Environmental Health and Engineering

Ciaran, an associate professor of landscape hydrology and Russell Croft Faculty Scholar, studies how the structure of landscapes controls the movement of water from rainfall to streams, and how that structure evolves over time.

Vivien Thomas Scholars Initiative

The Vivien Thomas Scholars Initiative (VTSI) is an endowed fellowship program at Johns Hopkins for PhD students in STEM fields. It provides full tuition, stipend, and benefits while also providing targeted mentoring, networking, community, and professional development opportunities. Students who have attended a historically Black college and university (HBCU) or other minority serving institution (MSI) for undergraduate study are eligible to apply. To be considered for the VTSI, all components of the individual PhD program application, including the VTSI supplemental components must be completed by December 1, 2022. The fee waiver deadline is November 15, 2022.




Tuition and Funding

Contact Us

Questions about the program? We're happy to help.

Senior Academic Program Coordinator
Natalie Van Horn


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