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March 17, 2010 / or4green


Here is a listing of some relevant institutes and centers, several of which have been mentioned on this blog before, others not. All have a sustainability focus. The O.R. connection is not explicit for most, but O.R. can be an important element in the work of pretty much each one. There is a wealth of information to be found on the various web sites.

[Quotations below come from the respective web sites of the institutes unless otherwise noted. This post will be recycled as a “page” for easy access from any part of the blog, and updated over time. It is not a comprehensive list; contributions are welcome.]

Yale University’s Center for Industrial Ecology

…established in September 1998 to provide an organizational focus for research in industrial ecology … Faculty research interests include, among others, the theoretical basis of industrial ecology, the cycles of materials, technological change and the environment, eco-industrial urban development, industrial symbiosis, and product and producer policy issues.

– Industrial Ecology has been mentioned several times here, see the category archive.

Institute of Computational Sustainability at Cornell University
– their mission has to do with applying computer science to sustainability
– I attended their inaugural conference, which included several green O.R. talks, and wrote about it here.

Global Institute of Sustainability at Arizona State University
– “The Institute conducts research, education, and problem-solving related to sustainability, with a special focus on urban environments.”
– mentioned in the article “A Threat So Big, Academics Try Collaboration,” NY Times, 12/25/07.

New Building Institute
– “NBI assesses technologies, promotes design approaches, and helps guide policies and programs that will significantly improve the energy efficiency of commercial buildings.”
– study of theirs on LEED buildings came up in posts here and here.

Rocky Mountain Institute
– “Our mission is to drive the efficient and restorative use of resources.”
– works with private sector and government
– follows the principles of Natural Capitalism
– key figure is Amory Lovins
– mentioned briefly in this post

Environmental and Energy Study Institute (EESI)
– Established “to provide timely information and develop innovative policy solutions that set us on a cleaner, more secure and sustainable energy path”. This information is aimed at Members of Congress.
– came up in a post about RPS

Sustainable Development Research Network (SDRN)
– “SDRN aims to facilitate and strengthen the links between providers of research and policymakers across government, in order to improve evidence-based policymaking to deliver the UK government’s objectives for sustainable development” (thanks daniel s. for letting me know)

Precourt Energy Efficiency Center at Stanford University

The mission of the Precourt Center is to promote energy efficient technologies, systems, and practices, emphasizing economically attractive deployment. PEEC works to understand and overcome market, policy, technology, and human behavioral barriers to economically efficient reductions of energy use and to inform public and private policymaking…

– The PEEC holds a number of conferences, the next one will be in November.

Robert Mondavi Institute at UC-Davis
– From a piece in the Santa Barbara Independent in June 2009:

UC-Davis’ to-be-built Robert Mondavi Institute, a 31,000-square-foot headquarters for the school’s winemaking, brewing, and food science studies. With state-of-the-art in sustainability that includes LEED certification, green cleaning chemistry, stormwater catchment, and the goal of zero net water, the institute intends to dramatically reduce use of water in wine and beer making.

Center for Sustainable Systems at the University of Michigan
– “leader in Industrial Ecology research and education specializing in life cycle assessment of human-built systems that rely on natural resources to provide for society’s needs.”

The Sustainability Institute
– “applies systems thinking, system dynamics modeling, and organizational learning to economic, environmental and social challenges.”
– connected to climateinteractive and c-roads, described here

The Mascaro Center for Sustainable Innovation at the University of Pittsburgh
– “center of excellence in sustainable engineering focusing on the design of sustainable neighborhoods”
– engineering oriented but likely relevant here
– had a summer school in ’08

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