MIT is a powerhouse of environmental research and innovation. ESI catalyzes this vibrant faculty and student community via seed grants, doctoral fellowships, and UROP’s.

Earth is a supremely complex system, and our understanding of the underlying forces that support human life is incomplete in many key respects. Human behavior and social systems are similarly complex and not fully understood. Investments in environmental and social sciences are required to improve both our baseline knowledge of how these systems function and interact, and our understanding of how humans are affecting and disrupting the intricately interconnected systems and cycles of life on earth. Insightful characterization of the problems we face and novel analyses are critical steps on the path toward solutions.

ESI’s priorities for research fall into three domain areas: Climate Science and Earth Systems, Cities and Infrastructure, and Sustainable Economy and Society. Each domain draws upon engineers, natural and social scientists, designers, and arts & humanities to understand and address critical challenges. 

ESI is pursuing collaboration with a diverse array of partners in industry, government, and civil society, with the aim of building robust research programs in all three priority domains.