Nishesh Chalise

Assistant Professor

Memorial Hall 15
CB 51

Nishesh believes that social issues we try to learn about and solve are embedded in complex systems. As Laurence J. Peter said, “Some problems are so complex that you have to be highly intelligent and well informed just to be undecided about them.” His approach to teaching derives from this understanding. Consequently he attempts to create room for multiple ways of knowing, working with ambiguities, and differing perspectives on reality.

As a social work researcher, he is interested in exploring relationships between human and natural systems as they relate to issues such as food and energy security in marginalized communities. He believes that the community-based approaches of social work are a great asset in understanding and solving problems that are at the nexus of social and ecological systems. He uses participatory systems modeling techniques to engage communities and organizations in solving complex problems.


  • Ph.D. Washington University in St Louis
  • MSW Washington University in St. Louis
  • (Environmental Sciences) Kathmandu University, Nepal

Research Interest

  • Community Food Security
  • Environmental Justice
  • Sustainable Community Development
  • Community based systems modeling

Recent Publications

Kumar, P., Chalise, N., Yadama, G. N. (2016). Dynamics of sustained use and abandonment of clean cooking systems: Study protocol for community-based system dynamics modeling. International Journal for Equity in Health.

Okumu, M., Kato, H., & Chalise, N. (2016). A system dynamics approach to process evaluation of Pen-Based digital media making projects. In T. Hammond, S. Valentine & A. Adler (Eds.), Revolutionizing Education with Digital Ink: Springer.

Hipp, A, & Chalise, N. (2015). Spatial Analysis and Correlates of County-level Diabetes Prevalence. Preventing Chronic Disease, 12, E08.

Bender, A. & Chalise, N. (2015). Differentiating Perceptions of Intimate Partner Violence in Nepal. International Social Work. doi: 10.1177/0020872815603787

Hovmand, P.S. and Chalise, N. (2015). Structural equation modeling. In Rahmandad, H., Reglio, O., & Osgood, N. (Eds) Handbook of Analytic Methods for System Dynamics. MIT Press.

Yadama, G., Schechtman, K. B., Biswas, P., Castro, M., and Chalise, N. (2013). Indoor Air Pollution and Respiratory Health: A Transdisciplinary Vision. In Eds. Debra Haire-Joshu and Timothy D. McBride. Transdisciplinary Public Health: Research, Methods, and Practice. John Wiley and Sons. New York.