Richard K. Worthington

Emeritus Professor of Politics
With Pomona Since: 1990
  • Expertise


    Richard Worthington’s teaching, scholarly work and political activism all focus on the intersection of science, democracy and social change. He is especially interested in how science and technology can be shaped by common citizens, rather than by corporations and the military, with the goal of developing policies and actions that will aid in the transition to an equitable, democratic and ecologically sustainable society.

    Worthington is the author of Rethinking Globalization: Production, Politics, Actions (2000) and other works in science policy, environmental issues and politics in the Americas. Most recently, he was U.S. coordinator of World Wide Views on Global Warming, the first global citizen policy consultation in history, in which citizens in 38 countries deliberated on the policy questions later addressed at the 2009 United Nations climate summit in Copenhagen. Today, he is principal investigator of a National Science Foundation-funded project to study the process and outcomes of World Wide Views.

    Through his classes, students have been involved throughout the greater Los Angeles area in hundreds of internships and community-based research projects in social and environmental justice. He also chairs the Board of Trustees of the Loka Institute, the mission of which is “making research, science and technology responsive to democratically-decided social and environmental concerns.”  

    Research Interests

    • Policies and actions that will lead to an equitable, democratic, and ecologically sustainable society
    • How science and technology can be shaped by common citizens

    Areas of Expertise

    • Participatory Technology Assessment
    • Globalization
    • Environmental Justice
  • Work


    Citizen Participation in Global Environmental Governance ed. with M. Rask and M. Lammi (Earthscan, 2011)

    Rethinking Globalization: Production, Politics, Actions (Peter Lang Publishing, 2000)

    The Internet, IP, and Future Prospects, (International Engineering Consortium, 2000)

    "The North American Free Trade Agreement and the Politics of Environmental Discourse," in Greening Environmental Policy (M. Black and F. Fischer, eds., Paul Chapman, 1995)

    "The Silence of the Labs," Los Angeles Times, July 1, 1993

    "Globalization of Science and Repression of Scientists in Mexico," in Science, Technology and Human Values, Winter 1993

    "Community-Based Research and Technoscience Activism: A Report on the Living Knowledge 3 Conference" in Science as Culture, December 2007 

  • Education


    University of Oregon

    Master of Science
    University of Oregon

    Bachelor of Arts
    University of California, Berkeley

    Recent Courses Taught

    • Internship and Thesis Seminar in Public Policy Analysis
    • Organizational Theory
    • Politics of Environmental Justice
    • Politics of Community Design
    • Senior Oral Examination in Politics
    • Senior Thesis in Politics
    • Technopolitics and Policy
  • Awards & Honors

    Awards & Honors

    National Science Foundation, $234,955 grant to study the process and impact of World Wide Views on Global Warming, a citizen policy consultation on climate change issues that will be addressed at the December 2009 UN climate summit in Copenhagen, 2009 (The grant includes sub-awards to collaborators at Arizona State University, Colorado School of Mines, and Georgia Tech)

    John Randolph and Dora Haynes Foundation, Fellowship, Summer 2000

    William and Flora Hewlett Foundation, Grant, 1993-94

    USC Center for Telecommunications, Management Grant, 1991-95

    Rockefeller Institute of Government, Senior Fellow, 1984-85