• Aaron Martin
  • Aaron Martin
  • Aaron Martin studies how organizations and institutions assess uncertainty and the implications of these assessments for risk governance, policy, and decision-making. He uses a variety of methods including surveys, interviews, computational tools, and policy analysis. Martin is currently a Fellow at the Center for Cultural Analysis at Rutgers and has previously held Fellowships at the Global Catastrophic Risk Institute and the Rutgers Center for Historical Analysis. Prior to Rutgers, Aaron spent six years working in nonprofit development for human rights organizations in Washington, D.C. He received his B.A. in English and Education from Houghton University and his M.A. in Sociology from Rutgers University.

    Martin’s work covers three areas:

    • Organizational (In)Action to Address Extreme Risk

    In the face of complex global risks like climate change, pandemics, and nuclear conflict, organizations are a critical site of action ­– or inaction – where risks are both produced and remediated. Martin’s current research in this area examines how actors positioned within organizations influence larger organizational policies concerning risk and uncertainty.

    • Interpreting Extreme Events

    For non-experts attempting to make sense of complex events like extreme weather, interpretation is difficult and dependent on a variety of individual and structural factors. These factors may also determine the lines of action non-experts pursue. Martin’s current research in this area explores how individuals understand the causes of extreme weather, whom they blame for its impacts, and how/why they intend to act or not as a result, paying particular attention to the specific structural factors that shape understanding.

    • Governing Extreme Risk

    As new expressions of extreme risk emerge – COVID-19 or extreme weather as a result of anthropogenic global warming, for example – available schemes for assessing and responding are consistently inadequate for preventing harm. Martin’s work in this area evaluates existing strategies for collective decision-making related to complex risk and their implications for risk policy.