The graduate program in Earth System Science and Policy is organized and intellectually centered on the science and policy of environmental sustainability. This relatively new program grew out of a recognized need for comprehensive research and educational programs that provide practical engagement in research and management of the Earth system and resources.
The mission of the Earth System Science and Policy program is to provide an integrated and creative learning environment that fosters intellectual growth, critical thinking, and practical engagement in research and management of the Earth system and resources.
The ESSP program is a thematic one, emphasizing practical experience especially through, student-centered learning, and integration of knowledge across traditional disciplinary boundaries, and active dialogue both in and outside the classroom. Sustainability science has emerged as an intellectually exciting, growing discipline that is a driving concept for major international scientific and environmental policy efforts. By bridging theory with practice, global and local perspectives, and scientific and social disciplines, sustainability science seeks to meet the needs of society while sustaining the life support systems of the planet.
The objectives of the program in Earth System Science and Policy include:
- Student-structured curriculum
- Research driven by societal needs and values
- Multidisciplinary education
- Learning within teams
- Experiential learning
- Leadership to create a future proactively
- Unification of economic security, ecological integrity, and social equity
- Cultural inclusiveness
- Regional focus but nested within global systems