CNCS Center for Nonlinear and Complex Systems
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Peter K. Haff, Professor Emeritus

Peter K. Haff

Please note: Peter has left the "CNCS: Center for nonlinear and complex systems" group at Duke University; some info here might not be up to date.

The neoenvironment is the total environment in which we live. It is the sum of the natural, human, and technological systems and processes that surround us. It includes for example forest ecosystems, animals and machines, nanotechnology, the internet, highways, medical systems, power grids, human populations, political parties, governments and bureaucracies, robots and religions and their interactions with each other. In an age in which both the level and acceleration of technology are high, understanding and living with our "environment" can only mean understanding and living with the neoenvironment. Technology cannot be factored out of the neoenvironment leaving only natural processes. The neoenvironment must be understood as a whole. There are many consequences for the future of human-well being that flow from the emergence of the neoenvironment and my research examines some of them.


Contact Info:
Office Location:  LSRC, 9 Circuit Drive, Durham, NC 27708
Office Phone:  (919) 684-5902
Email Address: send me a message


Ph.D.University of Virginia1970
B.A. Harvard University1966

earth surface processes
landscape dynamics
Research Interests: Field work and computation on earth surface processes, including the role of humans as geomorphic agents, in the dynamics of the modern technological environment, and in limitations to modeling and prediction in science.


Animals • Biodiversity • Conflict (Psychology) • Conservation of Natural Resources • Economics • Energy Metabolism • Hemorheology • Humans • Models, Biological • Social Change • Social Conditions • Social Perception

Representative Publications   (More Publications)

  1. Strudley, MW; Murray, AB; Haff, PK, Emergence of pediments, tors, and piedmont junctions from a bedrock weathering-regolith thickness feedback, Geology, vol. 34 no. 10 (October, 2006), pp. 805-808, Geological Society of America, ISSN 0091-7613 [1], [doi]  [abs]
  2. P. K. Haff, Response of Desert Pavement to Seismic Shaking, Hector Mine Earthquake, California (2001)
  3. Haff, PK, Desert pavement: An environmental canary?, The Journal of Geology, vol. 109 no. 5 (January, 2001), pp. 661-668, University of Chicago Press [doi]  [abs]
  4. P.K. Haff, Neogeomorphology, Prediction, and the Anthropic Landscape (2001) (PDF; HTML version.)
  5. Haff, PK; Werner, BT, Dynamical Processes on Desert Pavements and the Healing of Surficial Disturbances, Quaternary Research, vol. 45 no. 1 (January, 1996), pp. 38-46, Cambridge University Press (CUP), ISSN 0033-5894 [0004], [doi]  [abs]
  6. P.K. Haff, Rivers and Blood - Allometric Scaling in Biology and River Networks, Nature, vol. 408 (2000), pp. 159-2000
  7. Raghuraman, J; Haff, PK, Scaling-up of small-scale granular sediment transport laws, Proceedings of Engineering Mechanics, vol. 1 (January, 1996), pp. 262-264, Fort Lauderdale, FL, USA  [abs]
  8. Haff and Furbish, Upslope Transport and Other Oddities of Landscape Diffusion (2000)
  9. Haff, PK; Jiang, Z, Vertical mixing of grains during bedload transport, Proceedings of Engineering Mechanics, vol. 2 (January, 1995), pp. 931-933, Boulder, CO, USA  [abs]
  10. Furbish and Haff, The Master Equation Applied to Landscape Evolution (2000)
  11. Haff, PK, Constitutive laws and prediction in granular systems, Proceedings of Engineering Mechanics, vol. 2 (January, 1995), pp. 786-789, Boulder, CO, USA  [abs]
  12. Haff, PK; Jiang, Z; Forrest, SB, Transport of granules by wind and water: Micromechanics to macromechanics in geology and engineering, Mechanics of Materials, vol. 16 no. 1-2 (January, 1993), pp. 173-178, Elsevier BV, Potsdam, NY, USA, ISSN 0167-6636 [doi]  [abs]
  13. Haff, PK, Discrete mechanics of sediment transport, Proceedings of Engineering Mechanics (January, 1992), pp. 756-759, College Station, TX, USA  [abs]
  14. Forrest, SB; Haff, PK, Mechanics of wind ripple stratigraphy., Science (New York, N.Y.), vol. 255 no. 5049 (March, 1992), pp. 1240-1243, ISSN 0036-8075 [17816833], [doi]  [abs]
  15. Haff, PK, Basic physical models in sediment transport, Coastal Sediments '91 (January, 1991), pp. 1-14, Seattle, WA, USA  [abs]
  16. Werner, B.T. and Haff, P.K., Dynamical simulations of granular materials using the Caltech Hypercube, Third Conference on Hypercube Concurrent Computers and Applications (1988), pp. 1313 - 18, Pasadena, CA, USA  [abs]
  17. Anderson, RS; Haff, PK, Simulation of eolian saltation., Science (New York, N.Y.), vol. 241 no. 4867 (August, 1988), pp. 820-823, ISSN 0036-8075 [17829176], [doi]  [abs]
  18. Haff, PK; Werner, BT, COLLISIONAL INTERACTION OF A SMALL NUMBER OF CONFINED, INELASTIC GRAINS., vol. 3 (December, 1987), pp. 483-501, Miami Beach, FL, USA  [abs]
  19. Hui, K; Haff, PK, Kinetic grain flow in a vertical channel, International Journal of Multiphase Flow, vol. 12 no. 2 (January, 1986), pp. 289-298, Elsevier BV, ISSN 0301-9322 [0301-9322(86)90031-5], [doi]  [abs]