210 Ames Hall
Research Areas Environmental systems

An expert in environmental systems analysis, Hugh Ellis’s innovative models and analysis are integral to critical, policy-shaping research studies ranging from climate issues to public health. Ellis is a professor of environmental health and engineering and the former chair of the Department of Civil Engineering.

Currently, Ellis is on the research team for the Environmental Protection Agency’s multi-institution research team for the Solutions to Energy, AiR, Climate, and Health (SEARCH) program. SEARCH is investigating emerging U.S. energy transitions and resulting air pollution and health outcomes through novel modeling and measurements to characterize factors contributing to emissions, air quality, and health. Ellis’ research is helping to provide key scientific insight on how energy choices, climate policy, and other considerations can impact air pollution and health.

Specifically, Ellis works on a new modeling approach to emissions downscaling with a goal of providing a deeper, multidisciplinary understanding of the regional effects of air, energy, and climate policies as they interact with future energy transitions.

Ellis, a Hopkins faculty member since 1984, served for six years as chair of the Department of Geography and Environmental Engineering (now the Department of Environmental Health and Engineering) and as chair of the Department of Civil Engineering for five years.

He is the recipient of a Whiting School of Engineering W.H. Huggins Excellence in Teaching Award and a Student Council Excellence in Undergraduate Teaching Award.

Ellis has an impressive depth of leadership on key, national committees for air and water quality. In 2016, he chaired the Scientific and Technical Advisory Committee for a review of the Generalized Additive Model (GAM) approach for Water Quality Trends in Tidal Waters. He was a member of the National Research Council for the Committee on State Practices in Setting Mobile Source Emissions Standards; the National Research Council, Commission on Engineering and Technical Systems, Committee for Measuring and Improving Infrastructure Performance; and the National Research Council Committee on Vehicle Emission Inspection and Maintenance Programs. For six years, he chaired the Air Quality Control Advisory Council of the Maryland Department of the Environment. He has been associate editor of Water Resources Research and Operations Research – Natural Resources, Energy and Environment.

He received his BASc. (1979), MASc. (1981), and PhD.(1984) in Civil Engineering from the University of Waterloo, Waterloo, Ontario, Canada.