Faculty Bio: Victoria Johnson


Room #:


organizations, cultural history, and the natural environment

Common Courses Taught

URBG 701: Introduction to Organization and Management
URBG 787.19: Leading in the American Nonprofit Sector
URBS 403.1M: Introduction to Arts Management


Ph.D. Sociology, Columbia University
B.A. Philosophy, Yale University


Victoria Johnson is Professor of Urban Policy and Planning at Hunter College. She earned her PhD in sociology from Columbia in 2002, writing a dissertation that was published as Backstage at the Revolution: How the Royal Paris Opera Survived the End of the Old Regime (University of Chicago Press, 2008). She earned her undergraduate degree at Yale in philosophy in 1991, also studying music and art history there before moving to Berlin to spend a year at the Humboldt-Universität.

Dr. Johnson joined Hunter in 2015 from the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor, where she was a tenured associate professor. Her current research lies at the intersection of organizations, cultural history, and the built and natural environments. In 2015-2016, Dr. Johnson was the Birkelund Fellow at the Cullman Center for Scholars and Writers of the New York Public Library, where she completed a book on New York City history entitled American Eden: David Hosack, Botany, and Medicine in the Garden of the Early Republic (Liveright Publishing, a division of W. W. Norton & Company, June 2018).

American Eden was named a New York Times Notable Book of 2018 and was a finalist for the 2018 National Book Award in Nonfiction, the 2018 Los Angeles Times Book Prize in Biography, and the 2019 Pulitzer Prize in History.

In 2021-2022, Professor Johnson was awarded a Guggenheim Fellowship in support of her current book project, a biography of painter and landscape architect Frederic Church (1826-1900), who was also a New York City Parks Commissioner and co-founder of the Metropolitan Museum of Art.