Saleem Ali Biography | Professor, Family, Career & Bibliography

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Saleem H. Ali, a renowned Pakistani-American Australian professor, has made indelible contributions to environmental conflict resolution, sustainable resource development, and planetary sustainability. This page looks into the Saleem Ali Biography and his varied career, academic accomplishments, and substantial contributions to environmental studies and diplomacy.

Quick Facts about Saleem Ali Biography

CategoryQuick Facts
Birth Year1973
NationalityPakistani American Australian
Current PositionBlue and Gold Distinguished Professor of Energy and
the Environment at the University of Delaware
Previous PositionsChair in Sustainable Resources Development at the
University of Queensland; Professor of Environmental
Studies at the University of Vermont
AffiliationsHonorary Professor at the University of Queensland;
Senior Fellow at Columbia University’s Center on Sustainable
Investment; Fellow at the Gund Institute; Senior Fellow
of the Foreign Policy Research Institute
Key ContributionsEnvironmental conflict resolution, sustainable resources
development, planetary sustainability
Notable Titles“The Alchemist” (Forbes Magazine, 2009); “Treasures of
the Earth: Need Greed and a Sustainable Future” (Book, 2009)
Global RecognitionsYoung Global Leader (World Economic Forum); Emerging
Explorer (National Geographic); Revolutionary Mind (Seed Magazine)
Research FocusMultiscale environmental conflicts, ecological factors
promoting peace, environmental education in madrasahs
Global PanelsUnited Nations International Resource Panel, Science
Panel of the Global Environment Facility, World Commission
on Protected Areas, IUCN Taskforce on Transboundary Conservation
Educational BackgroundPh.D. in Environmental Planning (MIT); M.E.S. in Environmental
Law and Policy (Yale University); B.A. in Chemistry (Tufts University)
Family BackgroundBorn to Pakistani immigrant parents; Father, Dr. Shaukat Ali,
Professor of Political Science; Mother, Dr. Parveen Shaukat Ali,
Vice Principal of Forman Christian College; Two sisters,
Irfana Qadir and Farzana Hassan
Personal LifeMarried to Maria, a psychologist; Two sons, Dr. Shahmir Ali and Shahroze Ali
LanguagesProficient in English and Urdu
MiscellaneousMultiscale environmental conflicts, ecological factors
promoting peace, and environmental education in madrasahs

Early Life and Education:

Saleem Ali’s path began with academic distinction since he was born in 1973 to Pakistani immigrant parents. His early life and education, impacted by his parents’ different origins, lay the groundwork for his later work. Dr. Shaukat Ali, a Political Science professor, and Dr. Parveen Shaukat Ali, Vice Principal of Forman Christian College, instilled ideals in Saleem that inspired his attitude to principled conflict and pragmatic compromise.

Saleem attended Aitchison College in Lahore, Tufts University for a bachelor’s degree in chemistry, Yale University for a master’s degree in environmental law and policy, and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) for his doctorate in environmental planning under the supervision of Lawrence Susskind.

Academic and Professional Journey:

Dr. Ali’s professional career began as an environmental health and safety professional at General Electric. Following that, he worked as a consultant for several organizations, including the Environmental Protection Agency, the Fish and Wildlife Service, and Health Canada. His numerous efforts, including a mining impact prospectus for the Crow Nation, demonstrated his dedication to environmental stewardship.

Saleem Ali moved into academia, where he worked at notable institutions such as Brown University’s Watson Institute for International Studies and the University of Vermont’s Rubenstein School of Natural Resources. His experiences as a Baker Foundation Research Fellow at Harvard Business School, a Rockefeller Foundation Bellagio Residency, and a legislative internship at the British House of Commons broadened his scholarly horizons.

saleem ali picture
Photo: Shahroze1 / CC BY-SA (

Pioneering Environmental Diplomacy:

Saleem Ali, a pioneer in environmental diplomacy, founded the Institute for Environmental Diplomacy and Security. He advised DeepGreen, a deep-sea mining business, on environmental and social impact assessments that aligned with the ambitions of small-island developing states. His contributions to ecological collaboration, as evidenced by the paper “Ecological Cooperation in South Asia,” established him as a thought leader in the subject.

Contributions to Planetary Sustainability:

Saleem Ali established his influence in setting global environmental policies after being appointed to the United Nations International Resource Panel in 2017 and the Science Panel of the Global Environment Facility in 2018. His study, which included the causes and consequences of environmental disputes, emphasized integrative approaches to achieving global sustainability. This dedication included supporting environmental education in madrasahs as well as researching the emergence of similar institutions in Pakistan.

Recognition and Achievements:

The World Economic Forum named Saleem Ali a “Young Global Leader” and National Geographic named him a “emerging explorer” in recognition of his worldwide impact. His book, “Treasures of the Earth,” was praised for connecting environmental behavior to poverty reduction. Saleem Ali’s contributions to scientific diplomacy anthologies highlight his broad effect, as he was named one of eight “revolutionary minds” by Seed magazine.

Personal Life: Saleem Ali Biography

Aside from his professional pursuits, Saleem Ali’s personal life demonstrates a dedication to family and cultural heritage. Saleem, who is married to a psychologist and has two sons, mixes his scholarly ambitions with a focus on personal well-being and familial relationships.

Saleem Ali Bibliography

  • Mining, the environment, and indigenous development conflicts, Saleem H. Ali, University of Arizona Press, 2003, ISBN 978-0-8165-2312-2
  • Peace Parks: Conservation and Conflict Resolution, Saleem H. Ali ed. MIT Press, 2007, ISBN 978-0-262-51198-8
  • Earth Matters: Indigenous People, The Extractive Industries and Corporate Social Responsibility, Ciaran O’Faircheallaigh and Saleem Ali eds. Greenleaf Publications, 2008, ISBN 978-1-906093-16-7
  • Islam and Education: Conflict and Conformity in Pakistan’s Madrassahs, Saleem H. Ali, Oxford University Press, 2009, ISBN 978-0-19-547672-9
  • Treasures of the Earth: Need, Greed and a Sustainable Future, Saleem H. Ali, Yale University Press, 2009, ISBN 978-0-300-14161-0
  • Environmental Diplomacy: Negotiating More Effective Global Agreements, Lawrence Susskind and Saleem H. Ali, Oxford University Press, 2014, ISBN 978-0-199-39797-6
  • Diplomacy on Ice: Energy and the Environment in the Arctic and Antarctic Rebecca Pincus and Saleem H. Ali eds., Yale University Press, 2015, ISBN 978-0-300-20516-9
  • Africa’s Mineral Fortune Saleem H. Ali, Kathryn Sturman and Nina Collins eds., Routledge, 2018 ISBN 9781138606920
  • Earthly Order: How Natural Laws Define Human Life Saleem H. Ali, Oxford University Press, 2022 ISBN 9780197640272
  • Soil to Foil: Aluminum and the Quest for Industrial Sustainability Saleem H. Ali, Columbia University Press, 2023 ISBN 9780231555562
  • Google Scholar Citations of Peer-reviewed articles by Saleem H. Ali


Academic genius, environmental diplomacy, and planetary sustainability weave a tale of significant effect in the tapestry of Saleem H. Ali’s life. His journey from Aitchison College student to a prominent professor affecting global environmental policies demonstrates a dedication to education, diplomacy, and the betterment of our planet. Saleem Ali’s reputation as the “Alchemist” of environmental dispute resolution continues to inspire the next generation of researchers and environmental stewards.

FAQs about Saleem Ali Biography

Q1: What is Saleem Ali’s educational background?

A1: Saleem Ali earned a doctorate in environmental planning from MIT, a master’s in environmental law and policy from Yale University, and a bachelor’s in chemistry from Tufts University.

Q2: What are Saleem Ali’s notable achievements in environmental diplomacy?

A2: Saleem Ali founded the Institute for Environmental Diplomacy and Security, advised the deep-sea mining company DeepGreen and contributed to reports on ecological cooperation in South Asia.

Q3: How has Saleem Ali contributed to planetary sustainability?

A3: Saleem Ali’s research focuses on integrative approaches to achieving planetary sustainability, emphasizing technical and social mechanisms to address environmental conflicts.

Q4: What global recognitions have Saleem Ali received?

A4: Saleem Ali has been recognized as a “Young Global Leader” by the World Economic Forum, an “emerging explorer” by National Geographic, and one of eight “revolutionary minds” by Seed magazine.


This website is created by Hammad Raza, one of the keen Researcher, Blogger & Content Writer. He aims to create this website to educate people by creating useful content. And tell people about the stories of People who Shaped our World and the Stories that Shaped their Lives. Thanks

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