'Global Classroom’ on Sustainable Development
Students around the world can now have a live interactive discussion with the top thinkers in the field of sustainable development—without ever having to leave their classroom. This new “global classroom” uses innovative web technology to link leading problem solvers with hundreds of graduate students in the U.S. and countries in Europe, Africa, South America, South Asia and East Asia.
Columbia Launches Climate Center
Columbia University has established its first center focused on bringing together the scientists, engineers, public health experts, foreign policy specialists and others who are working on the pressing challenges of climate change. The Columbia Climate Center, part of the Earth Institute but encompassing other parts of the University, is an outgrowth of Columbia's leadership in earth and environmental sciences.
Columbia Receives Support for New Water Center
In a demonstration of how private companies can work with academic institutions to practice sustainable development, the Earth Institute recently received funding from the PepsiCo Foundation to support projects that address the emerging challenges of global water scarcity.
These projects, aimed at finding specific solutions for more efficient water use and sustainable supply in India, Brazil, China and several countries in Africa, are part of a larger body of research on water issues to be carried out by the new Columbia Water Center.
Scientists Make First Map of Emerging Disease Hotspots
Hotspots where zoonotic pathogens pass from wildlife to humans. Credit: Nature.
An international research team has provided the first scientific evidence that deadly emerging diseases have risen steeply across the world, and has mapped the outbreaks’ main sources.
The study, published in Nature and resulting from the work of a team that includes Earth Institute researchers, suggests that as human populations expand into shrinking areas of wildlife biodiversity, largely in poor countries, they are increasingly at risk from contracting diseases originating from wild animals.
Scientific Voyage to Study Greenhouse Gases in the Southern Ocean
This February scientists launched a 42-day voyage to the Southern Ocean to gather data that will help explain how large amounts of climate-affecting gases move between atmosphere and sea. Comprising over 30 percent of the earth’s surface, “the Southern Ocean is a source of great uncertainty,” says Chief Scientist, David Ho of the Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory. “So it's potentially important to our understanding of the global system.”
Students Create Journal of Sustainable Development
After brainstorming their ideas in a small lounge, a group of Columbia students went on to build the foundation for a global, online publication dedicated to promoting interdisciplinary dialogue on sustainable development. Named Consilience after a book by E.O. Wilson, the first issue of this new journal features articles from researchers, students and practitioners on a wide variety of topics.
Special Concentration Will Prepare Students for Futures in Sustainable Development
Now in its second semester, the new Special Concentration in Sustainable Development is available to undergraduate students from Columbia College, the School of Engineering and Applied Science and the School of General Studies. A robust curriculum and two courses designed specifically for this concentration will prepare students to better understand and improve our rapidly changing world.
All Ivy Career Fair
This February, the Earth Institute hosted the sixth-annual All Ivy Career Fair, an opportunity for students from all eight Ivy League schools to explore careers in the environmental and sustainable development fields. Employers from 75 organizations from city, state and federal government, service organizations, advocacy groups and consulting firms came to speak with students.
A Word from the Director
Jeffrey D. Sachs on What's New at the Earth Institute
In the Classroom
David L. Downie, Director, Global Roundtable on Climate Change
Experts in the News
> Down to Earth with Robin Bell
Geotimes, February 2008
> Unquiet Ice Speaks Volumes on Global Warming
Scientific American, February 2008
> Drying of the West
National Geographic, February 2008
> Surprise Found in Earth's Plumbing System
MSNBC, Jan 10, 2008
Every two years, some of the world's most influential leaders and innovative thinkers come to the Earth Institute to discuss the State of the Planet.
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