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Kimberly Nicholas

Senior Lecturer, Director of Studies PhD school

Research Areas

Climate change, sustainable land use, farming systems, Sustainable Development Goal tradeoffs, sustainable consumption, ecosystem services, food security, viticulture (wine growing), climate adaptation, large scale land acquisitions, education, science communication 


How can humanity steward natural resources to both support a good life for everyone on Earth today, and leave a living planet for future generations?

My research program aims to understand the connections between people, climate, and land. This includes analyzing the impact of climate on crop suitability, yields, and quality, examining the opportunities for nature-based solutions to help stabilize climate change using wise land management and farming practices, and scaling the global questions of climate change and sustainable food systems to the individual, local, and national level to inform decisions. In my lab, we aim to find sustainable land and climate solutions and quantify their tradeoffs to inform better management and policy, using primarily quantitative methods including numerical and statistical modeling and data synthesis at regional to global scales, as well as field observations and involving stakeholders in research co-design and as subjects of study. We also work closely with a range of stakeholders in place-based case studies, using interview and survey-based methods to understand the benefits that they value from nature, to make potentially competing management agendas explicit and facilitate problem-solving in ecosystem management.


Since 2013, each fall I teach the foundational natural science course in the LUMES program, Earth Systems Science. We focus on developing skills in scientific research and experimental design, quantitative data analysis, and scientific writing, through learning about the biophysical basis and functioning of the nine Planetary Boundaries (Rockström et al., 2009) and how they connect to the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals.

As part of my commitment to innovative and excellent teaching, I have developed teaching and learning activities including the Climate Change “We Can Fix It World Cafe” and the LUMES peer writing tutor program, in collaboration with Ladaea Rylander from the Lund University Academic Support Centre. 

I’ve also developed and taught a PhD course on academic and popular science writing, Writing for Change, in collaboration with Mark Fischetti from Scientific American. 

Under the previous LUMES curriculum, I taught the courses Environmental Problem Awareness (2011, 2012), Rural Systems and Sustainability (2010, 2011, 2012, 2013), and the module Quantiative Methods in Sustainability (2011, 2012, 2013). With Stefan Anderberg, I co-taught a course in Global Climate and Environmental Change through the summer Global Collaborative Program at Kyung Hee University in South Korea in 2012.


Given the urgent need for social change to avoid dangerous climate change and meet the Sustainable Development Goals, I am passionate about public communication of research, and appreciate the chance to learn from diverse audiences through frequent public lectures  My latest project is a radio show on Sveriges Radio Ekot called “Kims Klimatval” (Kim’s climate vote), where I interview political leaders from 8 political parties about their climate policies ahead of the 2018 Swedish election. I also write popular science magazine articles and blog posts, and am working on a forthcoming book on climate change in daily life. I maintain a YouTube channel with videos of lectures and research summaries, and am a frequent contributor to news media, both Swedish such as Sveriges Radio P1 and P4, SVT, and Sydsvenskan; and international media, including BBC television, radio, and print; The Guardian print and podcast; National Public Radio (US); Australian Broadcasting Corporation radio;; and The Washington Post.


Kim Nicholas webpage: We Can Fix It World Cafe

Kim Nicholas webpage: peer writing tutor program

Kim Nicholas webpage: writings for change

Kim Nicholes webpage: press

Kim Nicholes webpage: upcoming talks

Kim Nicholas Youtube channel and videos

Sveriges radio, Kims klimatval, 2018 , part 1 (in Swedish)

Sveriges radio, Kims klimatval, 2018 , part 2 (in Swedish)

Sveriges radio, Kims klimatval, 2018 , part 3 (in Swedish)

Sveriges radio, Kims klimatval, 2018 , part 4 (in Swedish)


Retrieved from Lund University's publications database



Retrieved from Lund University's publications database


Retrieved from Lund University's publications database

Page Manager:
Kimberly Nicholas
E-mail: kimberly [dot] nicholas [at] LUCSUS [dot] lu [dot] se

Senior lecturer

LUCSUS (Lund University Centre for Sustainability Studies)

+46 46 222 68 12

Josephson, 112

Josephson, Biskopsgatan 5, Lund



Kimberly Nicholas is a Senior Lecturer in Sustainability Science at Lund University in Sweden. She studies how to manage natural resources to both support a good life today, and leave a living planet for future generations. In particular, her research focuses on sustainable farming systems, using nature-based solutions to benefit both people and ecosystems, and linking research with policy and practice to support a zero-emissions society that she hopes to live to see. She nearly became a consultant to the California wine industry instead. She holds a BSc and PhD from Stanford University and MSc degrees from the University of Wisconsin-Madison and the University of California-Davis.   

P.O. Box 170, SE-221 00 Lund, Sweden
Phone: +46(0)46- 222 80 81
info [at] lucsus [dot] lu [dot] se