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Photo of Urcuqui-Bustamante, Andrés M.

Andrés M. Urcuqui-Bustamante

Bridge to Faculty Scholar

Urban Planning and Policy

Pronouns: He/Him/His


Building & Room:

CUPPA Hall, Room 236


412 S. Peoria St., Chicago IL 60607


Andrés M. Urcuqui-Bustamante is a Bridge to Faculty Postdoctoral Research Associate in the Department of Urban Planning and Policy (UPP) at the University of Illinois Chicago (UIC). His work explores the interconnections between nature, society, and policy through the lens of human dimensions of natural resources.


Current Research

Andrés' current research endeavors delve into the fascinating realm of the human dimensions of natural resources. He is actively investigating how people's perceptions, attitudes, and values regarding natural resources and landscape management influence both individual and collective responses to environmental issues, infectious diseases, and social problems. In his work, Andrés uses a diverse set of research methods, including qualitative, quantitative, and mixed method approaches. His research seeks to address both theoretical inquiries and practical needs within the context of natural resource management and conservation. Furthermore, Andrés explores the impact of participatory research methods, such as collaborative modeling, role-play simulations, and facilitated workshops, on social learning, collaboration between stakeholders, and the development of informed environmental policies and programs.


Prior Experience

Before joining UIC, Andrés gained valuable experience as a Postdoctoral Research Associate in the School of Forest Resources at the University of Maine. There, he pioneered a collaborative modeling approach to engage a diverse range of stakeholders in studying tick-borne diseases, particularly Lyme disease, and to inform land use policies in the state of Maine. He also conducted quantitative analyses on outdoor recreationists' and private woodland owners' behavior concerning Lyme disease prevention and landscape management.


Research interests

Andrés has conducted extensive environmental science research in urban, peri-urban, and rural areas in the United States, Mexico, and Colombia.  His research interests are located within the fields of environmental science and studies. These include:

  • Environmental policy and governance.
  • Public health and emerging diseases.
  • Water and environmental policy.
  • Forest conservation and land use practices.
  • Conservation of biodiversity and ecosystems services.
  • Public participation in decision-making.
  • Community-based conservation and management.
  • Environmental conflict and collaboration.

Selected Publications

Urcuqui-Bustamante, A.M., Leahy, J.E., Sponarski, C. et al. 2024. Collaborative Modeling of the Tick-Borne Disease Social-Ecological System: A Conceptual Framework. EcoHealth.

Urcuqui-Bustamante, A.M.; T.L. Selfa; C.M. Ashcraft; H. Asbjornsen; K.W. Jones; R.H. Manson & A. Mayer. 2023. Using Science-based Role-play Simulations to Inform Payment for Hydrological Services Program Design in Mexico. Environmental Science and Policy, 139, 71-82.

Urcuqui-Bustamante, A.M.; T.L. Selfa; K.W. Jones; C.M. Ashcraft; R.H. Manson; H. Asbjornsen. 2022. Learning Through a Science-Based Role-Play Negotiation Simulation: The Case of Local Mechanisms for Payment for Hydrological Services in Veracruz, Mexico. Socio-Ecological Practice Research, 4, 305-323

Selfa, T.L.; A.M. Urcuqui-Bustamante; D. Cordoba; S. Avila-Foucat; E.C. Pischke; K.W. Jones; M.Z. Nava-Lopez; D.M. Torrez. 2022. The role of situated knowledge and values in reshaping payment for hydrological services programs in Veracruz, Mexico: An actor-oriented approach. Rural Studies, 95, 268-277.

Urcuqui-Bustamante, A.M.; T. Selfa; P. Hirsch & C. Ashcraft. 2021. Uncovering Stakeholder Participation in Payment for Hydrological Services (PHS) Program Decision-Making in Mexico and Colombia. Sustainability, 13 (15), 8562.

Urcuqui-Bustamante, A.M. & C. Álvarez. 2011. Conservation and Socioenvironmental Conflicts in Cali River Watershed, Valle Del Cauca, Colombia. Memorias del VII Seminario Internacional de Desarrollo Rural: Mundos rurales y transformaciones globales, desafíos y estrategias de respuesta. Bogotá, Colombia. 20p. ISBN 978-958-716-447-3.


PhD in Environmental Science, SUNY College of Environmental Science and Forestry (Syracuse NY, USA)
MS in Rural Development, Pontificia Universidad Javeriana (Bogota, Colombia)
MS in Management and Conservation of Tropical Biodiversity, CEU San Pablo (Madrid, Spain)
BS in Environmental Management, Universidad Autónoma de Occidente (Cali, Colombia)

Professional Memberships

ACSP Association of Collegiate Schools of Planning.

IASNR International Association for Society and Natural Resources.

ESP LAC Ecosystem Services Partnership Latin America and Caribbean.

Research Currently in Progress

Green spaces and urban planning:

  • Understanding access and usage of green spaces by people of color in Chicago.
  • Social factors driving usage and avoidance of green spaces in Chicago.

Water and environmental policy:

  • Non-economic values associated with payment for hydrological services programs: Recognizing local shared values to improve natural resource management.

Human dimensions of vector-borne disease ecology:

  • Psychosocial determinants of Lyme disease preventive behavior among outdoor recreationists.
  • Forest Management and Lyme Disease: Private Woodland Owners’ perspective on Lyme Disease risk.
  • Impacts of forest management practices on tick density and tick-borne pathogen prevalence using agent-based modeling.

Public participation in decision-making:

  • Collaborative modeling of the tick-borne disease social-ecological system.
  • Simulated negotiations to inform public policy addressing tick-borne diseases.