Faculty, Brian Szuster, Department of Geography, University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa

Brian Szuster

Associate Professor, Undergraduate Chair
Office: Saunders 436
1 (808) 956-7345

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More than 50% of the U.S. population lives in coastal areas that make up only 10% of the nation's land area, and two thirds of all people on earth live near the coast. Competition and conflict over access to natural resources is inevitable in these circumstance, and my research and teaching explores the complex relationship between people, natural resources and the places they live, work or visit in the coastal zone. I’ve worked extensively in both Southeast Asia and Hawaii focusing on resource management issues associated with shrimp aquaculture, agricultural land use on coastal deltas, and coastal tourism development.


  • PhD, Geography, University of Victoria, 2001
  • MA, Geography, Simon Fraser University, 1992
  • BSc (Honors), Geography, University of Alberta, 1986


  • GEOG 101: The Natural Environment
  • GEOG 324: Geography of Global Tourism
  • GEOG 356: Geography of Southeast Asia
  • GEOG 412: Environmental Impact Assessment
  • GEOG 413: Resource Management
  • GEOG 415: Nature-Based Tourism Management
  • GEOG 622: Advanced Environmental Impact Assessment
  • GEOG 654: Seminar in Geography of Southeast Asia
  • GEOG 728: Seminar: Resource Management in Asia-Pacific


My research focuses on two broad themes: coastal shrimp farming in Thailand and coastal tourism in Hawaii. In both cases, development has occurred without adequate planning, and my research contributes to understanding social and environmental impacts and developing management tools that create more sustainable futures. I have over 30 refereed publications and recently co-edited a book on Tropical Deltas and Coastal Zones. I was the co-chair of the 8th International Congress on Coastal and Marine Tourism, and acted as co-editor of special issues in the Coastal Management Journal and Tourism in Marine Environments Journal. Currently, I am the Undergraduate Chair in the Geography Department and serve on the executive committee of the UH Center for Southeast Asian Studies.