Plenary Speakers


Sherburne Abbott 

“Reflections on the Buzz and Biz of Sustainability Science”

Sherburne Abbott is the Vice President for Sustainability Initiatives and University Professor of Sustainability Science and Policy at Syracuse University. Her research and teaching interests lie at the interface of science and society—principally on issues related to climate change, energy, and sustainability. Prior to her current appointment, she was a senior advisor to President Barack Obama as the Associate Director for Environment and Energy of the Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP). She was responsible for coordinating the research and development portfolio for environment and natural resources, including overseeing the $2.4 billion U.S. Global Change Research Program.

Sunday 6/14 at 5:30pm (Location: Lei Zhang Auditorium)


John C. Crittenden

“Infrastructure Ecology: An Evolving Paradigm for Sustainable Urban Development”.

John C. Crittenden is the Director of the Brook Byers Institute for Sustainable Systems, the Hightower Chair Professor in the School of Civil and Environmental Engineering and Georgia Research Alliance Eminent Scholar in Sustainable Systems at the Georgia Institute of Technology. He has been elected as a member of the US and Chinese National Academies of Engineering. His current research focus is on sustainable urban infrastructure systems.  He and his colleagues are conducting research on alternative energy technologies, sustainable materials, advanced modeling of urban systems, sustainable engineering pedagogy, and urban form and policy. He also conducts research in various water treatment technologies (e.g., membrane, nanofiltration, advanced oxidation processes, photocatalytic oxidation, adsorption, etc.) and energy harvesting technologies (photocatalytic water splitting and aqueous phase reforming of biomass).

Monday 6/15 at 8:00an (Location: Woolsey Hall)


Barton Seaver

“ ‘Civic Fisheries’ and Our Emerging Marine Food Systems” 

Barton Seaver is a renowned chef, author, and speaker.  Seaver has opened seven restaurants and gained numerous awards for his food and environmentally conscious businesses, including Esquire magazine’s 2009 Chef of the Year Award.  Barton currently is the Director of the Healthy and Sustainable Food Program at the Center for Health and the Global Environment at Harvard’s School of Public Health.  He is also appointed as the first Sustainability Fellow in Residence at the New England Aquarium and was named by Secretary of State Hillary Clinton to the United States Culinary Ambassador Corp.  Seaver’s insights in sustainable food have been featured in many publications, radio shows, and television programs.


Monday 6/15 at 12:00pm (Location: Commons Dining Hall)


Arjen Hoekstra

“The Sustainability of Our Water Footprint” 

Arjen Hoekstra is a Professor in Water Management at the University of Twente, the Netherlands. As the creator of the Water Footprint concept (2002), he has established the interdisciplinary field of Water Footprint Assessment, which addresses the relations between water management, consumption, and trade. Dr. Hoekstra has written several books on the topic of Water Footprint Assessment including The Water Footprint of Modern Consumer Society (Routledge, 2013)

Tuesday 6/16 at 8:00am (Location: Woolsey Hall)


Thomas E. Graedel

“Assessing the Criticality of Metals” 

Thomas E. Graedel is the Director of the Center for Industrial Ecology and Clifton R. Musser Professor of Industrial Ecology at the School of Forestry & Environmental Studies at Yale University. As the organizing framework for the study of the interaction of the modern technological society with the environment, Industrial Ecology informs the field of Environmental Science extensively. Dr. Graedel is the co-author of the first textbook on Industrial Ecology and has since written three more books and a number of scholarly articles on the subject. His environmental assessment matrix is now a standard industrial tool for streamlined life-cycle assessment of the environmental attributes of products, process, and facilities. 

Tuesday 6/16 at 5:30pm (Location: Woolsey Hall)