Emmanuel Frimpong Boamah

Assistant Professor - Department of Urban and Regional Planning
efrimpon@buffalo.edu - 226 Hayes Hall - (716) 829-5930

Assistant Professor - Department of Urban and Regional Planning

Professor Boamah pictured speaking with students in foreground.

Emmanuel Frimpong Boamah speaking during an Environmental Design Workshop presentation for Fillmore Avenue. Photo by Maryanne Schultz

Emmanuel Frimpong Boamah, Assistant Professor, holds a joint faculty appointment with the Department of Urban and Regional Planning and the UB Community for Global Health Equity (CGHE). He is trained as an interdisciplinary scholar with his research interests that cut across urban and regional planning, public policy, geography, and institutional economics. Emmanuel specializes in deploying theoretical and methodological lenses to unpack issues related to the political economy of social-ecological systems (e.g., land, water, and food systems) in sub-Saharan Africa and the United States. His empirical analyses are situated within mixed methods research, including social network analysis and modeling. Emmanuel is a co-editor of the Policy Dialogue Series by the CGHE. He currently assists the World Health Organization in developing an implementation guideline for the recently launched The WHO Housing and Health Guidelines.

Frimpong Boamah’s belief in an interdisciplinary approach to urban planning and studies and social science research drives his research, teaching, and community service agenda. His research has been published in international refereed journals such as World Development, Food Policy, Land Use Policy, Ecology and SocietyPlanning TheoryTransport PolicyJournal of Housing and Built Environment, and Geography Research Forum. He participated in the Adaptive Water Governance Project, an interdisciplinary project bringing together legal and resilience scholars to explore links in ecological resilience and the law and policy governing the process of water management in complex, multi-jurisdictional water basins. The program was funded by the National Socio-Environmental Synthesis Center (SESYNC) housed at the University of Maryland. 

I am trained as an interdisciplinary scholar ... when I think of water I think of land, and when I Think of land I think of food. These three things go hand in hand.

 - Emmanuel Frimpong Boamah at a panel discussion entitled Research for The Common Good, sponsored by the the UB School of Social Work April 4 , 2018

Recent News and Media Mentions

Education

  • PhD urban and public affairs (urban planning, public policy and sustainable development), University of Louisville
  • MUP, Minnesota State University, Mankato

Selected activities, honors and awards

  • ACSP Junior Faculty of Color Fellowship, Harvard University, 2019
  • Outstanding Faculty Award, UB Graduate Student Planning Association, 2019
  • National Center for Faculty Development and Diversity, University at Buffalo, 2018

Courses

Research

Professor Boamah speaking with students in group picture.

Frimpong Boamah during a site visit with undergraduate environmental design students. Photo by Maryanne Schultz

Frimpong Boamah is a prolific researcher and scholar with interests in water governance and determinations of the appropriate institutional frameworks for dealing with water issues.

His dissertation project examined how collaborative governance in the Middle Rio Grande (MRG) urban watershed is shaped by factors such as social capital, trust, social-ecological risks, access to information, and political power. He argued that these factors evince the governance of the MRG as a polycentric ecology of urban water policy games.

Today, Frimpong Boamah’s research continues to explore the frontiers of scholarship on urban health and planning, environmental governance, and public policy in the U.S. and sub-Saharan Africa.  He is currently involved in three projects. The first project builds on his dissertation to develop an agent-based, game-theoretic model to simulate the emergence of collaborative governance networks in watershed systems. The second project also develops a game-theoretic model based on his co-authored paper, Legal Pluralism, Land Tenure and the Production of “Nomotropic Urban Spaces” in Post-colonial Accra, Ghana. The model explains “nomotropic urbanism,” a concept he and his co-author used to capture the urban informality, land tenure, and political-economic dynamics in postcolonial cities in Africa. The third project draws on theoretical constructs from schools of thought such as the Virginia (constitutional political economy) and the Bloomington (polycentric governance) schools of political economy to explore complex urban health and planning, governance, and public policy issues in postcolonial sub-Saharan Africa countries (e.g. collective action dilemmas of urban traffic pollution, urban agriculture and food networks, political decentralization and urban planning paralysis, and public finance).

Work