Alexander Murphy

Alexander (Alec) Murphy is at the forefront of the movement to combat geographical illiteracy in the United States. A geography professor at the University of Oregon and winner of the university’s highest teaching award, Alec is Senior Vice-President of the American Geographical Society, a past president of the American Association of Geographers, and a frequent advisor on National Geographic education initiatives. Research, speaking invitations, and travel have taken him to more than 100 countries around the world. His published works include a popular world human geography textbook, a widely used treatise on the geography of Europe, and research articles on developments in the Middle East, East and Southeast Asia, Sub-Saharan Africa, and beyond. His recently completed book, Geography: Why It Matters (Polity, 2018), has been widely acclaimed for its role in promoting broader understanding of the nature and importance of geography. Alec holds a bachelor’s degree in archaeology from Yale University, a law degree from the Columbia University School of Law, and a Ph.D. in geography from the University of Chicago. Drawing on his expertise in political, cultural, and environmental geography, he will offer his insights into the human and physical forces shaping the places we visit.