RISK newsletter:
M. Granger Morgan Named Recipient
Of SRA's 1995 Distinguished Achievement Award

Source: RISK newsletter, Fourth Quarter 1995, published by the Society for Risk Analysis

M. Granger Morgan, a charter member and fellow of SRA, will be presented the Society’s 1995 Distinguished Achievement Award on December 4 during the opening plenary session of the SRA Annual Meeting in Honolulu.

Morgan is department head and professor in the Department of Engineering and Public Policy at Carnegie Mellon University, where he also has academic appointments in the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering and in The H. John Heinz III School of Public Policy and Management.

In announcing the SRA award, Awards Committee Chairman D. Warner North said that Morgan’s selection was based on his work on a variety of problems in risk analysis, risk management, and risk communication, particularly as they involve policy problems in which technical and scientific issues play a central role. He was also cited for his contributions as an educator, especially his supervision of many Ph.D. theses in engineering and public policy. In 1989, he was awarded the Carnegie Mellon University Robert Doherty Prize Award for “substantial and sustained contributions to excellence in education.”

Morgan completed his undergraduate studies at Harvard College in 1963, where he concentrated in physics and graduated with honors in general studies. In 1965, he received an M.S. degree from Cornell University in astronomy and space science, for which he performed experimental studies of the ionosphere on the 1000-foot telescope in Arecibo, Puerto Rico. After an interlude of graduate studies in history and the social sciences at the University of California at Berkeley, he earned a Ph.D. degree in 1969 from the Department of Applied Physics and Information Sciences at the University of California at San Diego, for which he did experimental studies of radio star scintillation. His association with the University of California at San Diego continued through 1972, where he filled the dual roles of director of a vocational program in computers for disadvantaged persons and lecturer/assistant professor in the Department of Applied Physics and Information Science. He joined Carnegie Mellon in 1974 following two years at the National Science Foundation, where he became director of the Division of Computer Research.

His current interests include problems in the integrated analysis of large complex systems and problems in the characterization and treatment of uncertainty. He is involved in a large program of integrated assessment of global climate change, his own research focusing on multi-attribute, multi-actor framings of the issues and the treatment of mixed levels of uncertainty in assessment models. Previous work in this program has been described in two journal articles that he coauthored with H. Dowlatabadi and D. W. Keith, respectively: “A Model Framework for Integrated Studies of the Climate Problem,” Energy Policy, 21(3), 1993; and “Subjective Judgments by Climate Experts,” Environmental Science & Technology, 29(10), 1995. His earlier work on treating uncertainties is described in the book Uncertainty: A guide to dealing with uncertainty in quantitative risk and policy analysis (Cambridge University Press, New York, 1990), which he coauthored with colleague Max Henrion.

He is also currently working on the development of methods of risk ranking to support decision making in risk management organizations, such as federal agencies; and, with Baruch Fischhoff and Lester Lave, he has developed a mental model based approach to risk communication.

In earlier research, he has addressed numerous other issues, including possible health risks from chronic exposure to power-frequency electric and magnetic fields, health and environmental impacts of energy systems, air pollution monitoring, the impact of computers and telecommunications, and communicating risks to the public.

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