Biography

James is an associate professor in the Department of Sustainable Technology and the Built Environment at Appalachian State University (ASU). He earned his Ph.D. from the Department of Agricultural and Biological Engineering at Cornell University, his M.S. in Appropriate Technology from ASU, and his B.A. in Biology from Wake Forest University. His main professional interests have been international conflict resolution and sustainable resource management. At ASU his research has focused on biomass energy systems (e.g., anaerobic digestion (biogas), biodiesel, and ethanol production) and sustainable water quality management (e.g. biologically based “living systems” for waste water treatment).

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In 2010, while innocently sitting in my office in the Department of Sustainable Technology and the Built Environment at Appalachian State University in the small mountain town of Boone, North Carolina, a diminutive and unassuming Appropriate Technology undergraduate student entered, wanting to discuss a research project. Bobbie Jo Swinson …

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