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Webinar: Why Aren’t Faculty More Engaged on the Climate Crisis? (Spoiler: It’s Tenure)

November 13 @ 2:00 pm - 3:00 pm EST

Do you ever wish that more faculty at your institution were working on sustainability? Many leaders have called for improved support for engaged scholarship(ES) to better connect the academy with pressing social threats (like climate change and environmental justice). How can we close the disconnect between the value that many institutions and society place on engaged scholarship and the barriers to engaging in ES research? We studied 28 small liberal arts colleges, contrasting the way values around ES are expressed in outward-facing public documents with the relative lack of best practices in their tenure documentation. We will also explore the overlap between these best practices and those recommended for diversity, equity and inclusion more generally. Leave with a concrete picture of what a better tenure process to confront our current polycrisis would look like.

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Alexander Barron, Associate Professor of Environmental Science and Policy, Smith College

Dr. Alexander Barron is an Associate Professor of Environmental Science and Policy at Smith College, where his research focuses on the design of policies to reduce greenhouse gas pollution. He has also worked in Congress, where he helped design comprehensive climate legislation, as a Deputy Associate Administrator at the Environmental Protection Agency, where he worked on standards to reduce carbon and mercury pollution, and as a Senior Counselor in the White House Office of Management and Budget, where he focused on cross-government climate and environmental regulations. He also served on the Smith College Study Group on Climate Change, Committee on Sustainability, and the District Energy Working Group. He has a B.A. in chemistry from Carleton College and a Ph.D. in ecology and evolutionary biology from Princeton University.

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