Dr. Alida Cantor

Associate Professor

Department of Geography

Portland State University

I am a geographer broadly interested in political ecology and human-environment interactions.  My research focuses primarily on understanding water resources management, and how water management can be more sustainable and just.  My work is situated in the areas of political ecology, water governance and hydropolitics, legal geography, and environmental justice.  In my work, I contribute to theoretical debates and academic literature, and also inform policy and practice of resource management.  I am also interested in food systems and other issues of resource management and human-environment geography. 

I advise master's and PhD students in the areas of environmental studies and sustainability, political ecology and political economy, local and global water resources governance, food systems, resource geography, environmental justice, environmental law and policy, human dimensions of climate change, nature/culture and gender, and social theory and the environment. If you are interested in working with me, please contact me with a description of your research interests. 

Selected recent publications: 

Cantor, Alida, B. Turley, C. Ross, and M. Glass. 2022. "Changes to California alfalfa production and perceptions during the 2011-2017 drought." The Professional Geographer. 

Knudson, Chris, A. Cantor and K. Kay. 2022. “Just water transitions at the end of sugar in Maui, Hawai’i.” Environment and Planning E: Nature and Space. 

Turley, Bethani, A. Cantor, S. Knuth, D. Mulvaney, K. Berry, and N. Vineyard.  2022. “Emergent landscapes of renewable energy storage: Considering just transitions in the Western United States.” Energy Research and Social Science 90: 102583.

Cantor, Alida, M. Kiparsky, R. Bales, S. Hubbard, R. Kennedy, L.C. Pecharroman, K. Guivetchi, G. Darling, and C. McCready. 2021. “Making a water data system responsive to information needs of decision makers.” Frontiers in Climate: Special issue on Democratizing Data: Environmental Data Access and its Future 3:761444.

Haeffner, Melissa, D. Hellman, A. Cantor, I. Ajibade, V. Oyanedel-Craver, M. Kelly, L. Schifman, and L. Weasel. 2021. “Representation justice as a research agenda for socio-hydrology and water governance.” Hydrological Sciences Journal 66(11): 1611-1624.

Cantor, Alida, L. Sherman, A. Milman, and M. Kiparsky. 2021. “Regulators and utility managers agree about barriers and opportunities for innovation in the municipal wastewater sector.Environmental Research Communications 3(3): 031001.

Cantor, Alida. 2021. "Hydrosocial hinterlands: An urban political ecology of Southern California's hydrosocial territory." Environment and Planning E: Nature and Space. 

Cantor, Alida, Kelly Kay, and Chris Knudson. 2020. "Legal geographies and political ecologies of water allocation in Maui, Hawai`i." Geoforum  110: 168-179. 

See Google Scholar page for more publications.

Selected recent policy papers and media publications:

Cantor, Alida. 2022. "The unnatural legal geographies of the current US megadrought." Law & Space (un)Journal.

Cantor, Alida and M. Kiparskly. 2020. "Civic engagement and water data: How can California make data work for decision makers?" Center for Law, Energy & the Environment, UC Berkeley School of Law, Berkeley, CA. 

Cantor, Alida, D. Owen, T. Harter, N. Green Nylen, and M. Kiparsky. 2018. "Navigating Groundwater-Surface Water Interactions under the Sustainable Groundwater Management Act." Center for Law, Energy & the Environment, UC Berkeley School of Law, Berkeley, CA. 

Cantor, Alida, M. Kiparsky, R. Kennedy, S. Hubbard, R. Bales, L. Cano Pecharroman, K. Guivetchi, C. McCready, and G. Darling. 2018. "Data for Water Decision Making: Informing the Implementation of California’s Open and Transparent Water Data Act through Research and Engagement." Center for Law, Energy & the Environment, UC Berkeley School of Law, Berkeley, CA. 

Owen, Dave, A. Cantor and M. Kiparsky. “Opinion: State law recognizes rivers and groundwater are connected — now what?San Jose Mercury News, May 11, 2018.