Inspiring the minds that lead the world
Yale’s teaching and research reaches far beyond the classroom. From developing national rankings for resource use to improving air quality in rural developing country homes, Yale’s thought leadership builds a more sustainable world.
- Yale plays a leadership role in creating strategic partnerships, both locally and amongst our Peer Institutions.
- As we integrate sustainability into the scholarship and operations of the university and position Yale as a local and global leader, the YSP 2025 governance bodies ensure this process is dynamic, iterative, and inclusive.
What You Can Do
- Explore opportunities for teaching, learning and research in sustainability at Yale.
- Learn about the New Haven Climate and Sustainability Framework and ways to engage in New Haven.
Our Objectives and Goals
Teaching, Research, Learning, and Service
Enrich and enhance teaching, research, learning, and service that explore and contribute to sustainability solutions.
In 2022, the newly established Yale Center for Natural Carbon Capture distributed funding for seventeen research projects across several University departments. Projects engage scientists from various disciplines, countries, and universities, and range from investigating forest carbon storage to converting carbon dioxide into sustainable plastics. This funding supports Ph.D. students, postdoctoral candidates, and recent graduates and will involve current students in various projects.
Sustainability Working Group
By 2017, establish a set of interdisciplinary working groups to be identified by faculty conveners. Working groups will focus on teaching, research, and service around key themes such as urbanization, health, food systems, land use, and climate change.
We achieved this goal in 2017 as faculty members from schools and departments throughout Yale collaborated on a program to advance urban scholarship, teaching, and engagement across the University. Most recently, working groups addressing health and well-being and climate resilience have engaged multidisciplinary approaches to piloting and testing solutions on campus.
Applied Research and Active Learning
By 2018, identify and support institutional pathways for applied research, active learning, and the use of the campus as a living laboratory.
We achieved this goal in 2019. Recent applied research and active learning includes the Bird-Friendly Building Initiative, which will reduce bird-window collisions on campus, and the Yale Refrigerants Initiative, which will phase down potent refrigerants by inventorying refrigerant gases and developing approaches to transition Yale to low-global-warming-potential refrigerants.
By 2019, establish a network to foster communication across the University on sustainability research and teaching, and to foster connections between the University’s scholarship and operations.
This goal was achieved in 2020, when the Planetary Solutions Project was created to address and raise awareness around climate mitigation and adaptation through creative solutions and an interdisciplinary approach. In 2022, the Climate Impact Innovation Fund, a $15 million fund supporting research into climate solutions, funded twenty-one proposals in its inaugural round of Planetary Solutions Project seed grants.
Act as a convening voice and leader for dialogues about local, national, and global sustainability challenges
By 2025, we aim to support a suite of projects in collaboration with the City of New Haven and local area groups that enhance equity, the economy, and the environment.
The University continues to collaborate with the City of New Haven and community groups by convening conversations around transportation, resilience, and the connection between nature and health. Going forward, we are seeking new ways to quantify additional impacts and partnerships, such as a more robust tracking of student community service hours.
By 2019, develop a strategic plan to chart the course for ambitious national and international collaborations on sustainability research, teaching, and practice.
This goal was achieved in 2019. Collaborating with other higher education institutions and organizations ensures that Yale participates in discussions around sustainability locally, regionally, and globally. The external collaboration strategy has focused on airline miles, the Sustainable Development Goals, carbon neutrality, biodiversity, and capacity building.
Sustainable Solutions Association
By 2020, formalize an alliance of Yale alumni, donors, and friends to cultivate enduring and meaningful dialogues about sustainability challenges and successes.
This goal was achieved in 2020, when Yale Blue Green launched its Sustainability Initiative, an alumni effort helping Yale expand and strengthen its commitment to leadership in sustainability as a globally applicable decision-making framework balancing people, planet, and prosperity. In 2022, the Initiative supported enhanced data collection and mapping, community engagement and partnership building, and resilience and adaptation planning support.