Gary Pivo

Professor of Real Estate Development and Urban Planning

Real Estate Development
School of Landscape Architecture and Planning
Urban Planning

Gary Pivo PhD works in the areas of responsible property investing, urban form, and sustainable cities. He holds professorships in the MS Urban Planning Program and the School of Natural Resources at the University of Arizona where he teaches courses on the land development process and sustainable cities. Pivo’s research has been cited by scholars in many different fields including urban studies, transportation, environmental studies, planning, public health, engineering, geography, economics, and more.

Previously, Pivo was Dean of the Graduate College, Director of Graduate Interdisciplinary Programs and Associate Dean of the College of Architecture, Planning and Landscape Architecture at the University of Arizona. In 2003 he was recognized as Administrator of the Year by the University of Arizona Graduate and Professional Student Council. He has also served as Chair of the Department of Urban Design and Planning and Director of the Interdisciplinary Group for the PhD in Urban Design and Planning at the University of Washington.

Professor Pivo has published extensively on responsible property investing, less auto dependent urban form, and sustainable urbanization. More recently he has been working on urban sustainability as it relates to water and mortgages. His research has been widely cited in scientific journals, text books, professional reports and government studies. In 2012, Dr. Pivo won the prestigious Legacy Award from the American Real Estate Society Journal of Real Estate Research for his paper Income, Value, and Returns in Socially Responsible Office Properties. His most recent work (with Xudong An of the Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia) examines the effects of sustainable property features on default risk in the CMBS market. He also recently completed a report on low income housing gaps in Pima County for Family Housing Resources, Inc. In 2015, Dr. Pivo was appointed Deputy Director of the Urban Water Innovations Network, a national Sustainability Research Network funded by the National Science Foundation. His work has formed the basis for market innovations including the Real Capital Analytics & Walk Score Commercial Property Price Indices, the first index to quantify the price value of walkability for commercial properties, and the Green/Sustainability Data Set produced by the National Council of Real Estate Fiduciaries that allows institutional investors to monitor the financial performance of sustainable real estate.

Dr. Pivo has been invited to speak at meetings convened by leading organizations and institutions including the United Nations, BOMA Intl., the US and World Green Building Councils, the National Science Foundation, the National Building Museum, the Urban Land Institute, the National Trust for Historic Preservation and the Tokyo Institute of Technology. His comments on urban planning have been carried by The Economist, The New York Times, The Christian Science Monitor, National Public Radio and dozens of other local and national publications. 

Professor Pivo has an extensive record of consulting and public service including work as the Special Assistant to the Governor’s Growth Strategy Commission (Washington), which laid the groundwork for the Washington State Growth Management Act. He was also co-founder and Advisor to the UN Environment Programme Finance Initiative Property Working Group, co-founder and President of 1000 Friends of Washington (now Futurewise) and co-Founder of the Responsible Property Investing Center (now the ULI RPI Council). He has served on committees for many leading organizations including the World Green Building Council, the Congress for New Urbanism, the Global Reporting Initiative, the Initiative for Responsible Investment at Harvard University, and the National Institute of Building Sciences. Dr. Pivo is an alumnus of the U.S. Presidential Management Fellows Program and holds a B.A. in Social Ecology from the University of California, Irvine, a Master’s in Regional Planning from Cornell University, and a Ph.D. in City and Regional Planning from U.C., Berkeley.