Stan Brunn

  • Professor
  • Appalachian Center
  • Geography
805A Patterson Office Tower
(859) 257-6947
Research Interests:

Stan Brunn labels himself a cosmopolitan Middle Westener after being raised in small towns and rural areas in a half-dozen states.  He taught previously at the University of Florida and Michigan State University.  He joined the University of Kentucky department in 1980 as chair and served in that capacity from 1980-88.  He was appointed by the Governor as State Geographer from 1988-1989.  His teaching and research interests include political, social and urban geography, the geographies of information and communication, the geographies of religion and languages, time-space geographies and innovative cartographies.  He has offered seminars on technological hazards, cyberspace, humane geographies, peace and reconciliation.

Stan’s research includes a number of authored, edited, and co-edited books and numerous articles which have appeared in geography and interdisciplinary journals.  His most recent books are about Wal-Mart, E-commerce, geography and technology, 9-11, the fifth edition of Cities of the World, an Atlas of the 2008 Elections, an Atlas of Central Eurasia, and a three volume edited work on Engineering Earth: The Impacts of Megaengineering Projects, which is based on an international and interdisciplinary conference he co-organized in 2008.   Recent articles and chapters, many with friends around the country and world, have dealt with the global financial crisis, immobility in rural Appalachia, religion/music interfaces, stamps and state identity, sparsely settled areas, classifying world cities, cognitive mapping of South African students, and North Dakota’s oil boom economies, the geopolitics and visualization of stamps, international marriage migrations, the geographies of knowledge and geovisualization..  His most recent book was The Changing World Religion Map  (5 volumes, 207 chapters, 3200+ pages) published by Springer in 2015.  He is working on a similar international and interdisciplinary voume on world languages.  He is also co-editing Mapping Across Academia, which has chapters by scholars in the sciences and humanities who use maps and a book on China and Souteast Asian geopoliics.

He has taught for short periods in Australia and more than a dozen European and Central Asian countries, including Finland, Sweden, Ireland, Switzerland, Poland, Slovenia, The Netherlands, Bosnia, Kosovo, Iceland, Belgium, South Africa, Kazakhstan and Kyrgyzstan.  He has also taught in Australia and China (in Yunnan Province, Shanghai Univesity and International Univesrity in Beijing.  In 2007 he was a Fulbright Lecturer at Semey State University in Semipalatinsk, Kazakhstan and in fall 2009 he was Visiting Professor at the National University of Ireland in Maynooth.  He spent his 2010-11 sabbatical year in Ghent, Belgium; Cape Town, South Africa, and Reykjavik, Iceland.  He also has been a US election observer in Kazakhstan and Tajikistan. 

During the past four decades he has made more than 100 presentations at dozens of national and international conferences around the world.  He was elected University of Kentucky Distinguished Professor in the College of Arts and Sciences in 1989-90.  He has been active in the Association of American Geographers, including editor of both The Professional Geographer and the Annals, AAG.  He received AAG Honors in 1994, NCGE Mentor Award in 2004 and in 2006 the Lifetime Achievement Award from SEDAAG (Southeast Division, AAG); also he has served on a number of IGU, NCGE and AAG committees, including co-chair of the AAG Centennial Coordinating Committee.  He is currently chair of the AAG Araachivees Commitgtee.  During the past two decades he has worked with educators in Kentucky to improve the quality and content of geography instruction in the state’s schools.  Among the many highlights of his professional career was his appearance on NBC’s Today Show in 1971 to discuss his proposed political reorganization of the United States.

His hobbies include collecting creative maps and landscape paintings, studying futuristic and  endangered geographies, singing in a choir, leading book discussions, learning other languages, working crossword puzzles and writing poetry. 

NOTE: Professor Brunn is now an emeritus but continues to be actively involved in promoting geography and geographes when and where called on.  He defines retirement as a time/space to do whatever you really wanted to do the previous fifty years. He maintains there is more geography we don't know than we do know.

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