Professor Ohm’s principal projects relate to his research on the need to revise and update state enabling laws that govern local planning. This work resulted in Wisconsin’s 1999 comprehensive planning and “smart growth” law. The following UW Extension publications include more information about the law.
To find additional information about the Comprehensive Planning law, visit The Wisconsin Department of Administration.
One section of the Comprehensive Planning law required that the University of Wisconsin Extension develop a model ordinance for a traditional neighborhood development and an ordinance for a conservation subdivision. Professor Ohm was asked to take responsibility for these ordinances. These ordinances were approved by the Wisconsin Legislature in July 2001.
Professor Brian Ohm is the co-principal investigator (along with Mike Adams, Emeritus Professor in Botany) of a $65,000 grant from the United States Department of Education to conduct a trans-Atlantic comparison of education about U.S. and European institutions involved in environmental policy. Ohm and Adams will be working on a comparison of the lower Elbe River in Germany with the Wisconsin River. The work culminated in an international conference in Madison in September 2008.
Professor Brian Ohm was the principle investigator of a grant from the National Sea Grant Law Center to evaluate local strategies to manage Great Lakes coastal hazards and to develop model ordinances for local Great Lakes communities. The ordinances incorporate recent innovations in methodologies for understanding bluff stability and computer visualization of Great Lakes coastal hazards. URPL Affiliate Faculty David Hart was the co-principal investigator on the project.
He was also principal investigator of a project exploring coastal management issues in Estonia. It is funded by the National Research Council of the National Academies INTREU grants program.
In addition, Professor Ohm was the co-principal investigator in a project entitled “Urban Ecology: Educating for the Management of Cultural Landscapes”. It is a Trans-Atlantic Student Exchange Program funded by the U.S. Department of Education’s Fund for the Improvement of Post Secondary Education and the Directorate General for Education and Culture of the European Commission.