About Us

About Us - Introduction 2

Our mission

Our mission is to transform MIT into a powerful model that generates new and proven ways of responding to the unprecedented challenges of a changing planet via operational excellence, education, research and innovation on our campus.

 

Watch our video to get a flavor of sustainability at MIT

Creating a next generation sustainable campus

The MIT Office of Sustainability (MITOS) was established in 2013 under the Executive Vice President and Treasurer's Office to integrate sustainability across all levels of our campus by engaging the collective brainpower of our students, staff, faculty, alumni, and partners. We have set out to ensure that sustainability is a critical part of MIT’s standard operating procedures and is fully integrated into the working, research, teaching, social and cultural spheres of our campus.


Group photo

The MITOS team. Read more about the team here.


How we work

The MITOS Strategy is organized into four areas of responsibility. While our work is based on campus, we are connected to the larger mission of MIT – to serve the nation and world. We have set out to have an an impact across scales, from the individual to the globe.

framework

Areas of Responsibility:

Sustainable Campus Systems: Reimagining systems on campus to advance the well-being and resilience of people and the environment

Campus as an Urban Living Laboratory: Utilizing the campus and its urban surroundings as a test-bed for innovation and knowledge generation through research and education

Collaborative Partnerships: Harnessing the collective intelligence of networks and communities to solve shared problems

Leadership and Capacity Building: Engaging and empowering faculty, students, and staff in shaping, applying, and continuously improving the sustainability of MIT and beyond

Read about our Scales of Impact framework.

Boston
Our core values

Applied Innovation: Pursue new strategies and solutions with tangible, scalable impacts

Collective Intelligence: Work across traditional boundaries and within networks to frame and solve problems

Civic Responsibility: Contribute to the mission of MIT by serving our campus, community, and the world

Systems Thinking: View all stakeholders, resources and challenges as interrelated and mutually dependent

Table of people
Our methods

Apply system-thinking to campus design, management, growth and renewal

Redefine the campus as an experimental laboratory for applied innovation and learning

Connect people, ideas and systems in ways that spark transformative and lasting change

Position higher education as a critical partner in delivering scalable impact from the individual to the global level

Scales of Impact

The challenges of sustainability are both local and global. Creating transformative solutions requires deep collaboration among community leaders and members on campus, city and global scales.

It starts with you on campus.

We start with you to find solutions at the campus level to serve both the institution's needs as well as to incubate new and big ideas.

you, campus, city, globe

MITOS Staff

Meet our team

Drawing from diverse academic and professional backgrounds, we work together to connect people, ideas and systems across the MIT community in ways that spark transformative and lasting change.

Julie Newman
Julie Newman
Director

Julie joined MIT as the Institute’s first Director of Sustainability in the summer of 2013. She has worked in the field of sustainable development and campus sustainability for twenty years. Her research has focused on the intersection between decision-making processes and organizational behavior in institutionalizing sustainability into higher education.

Email Julie

Julie is also a Lecturer in MIT's Department of Urban Studies and Planning (DUSP).

In 2004, Julie was recruited to be the founding Director of the Office of Sustainability for Yale University.  At Yale, Julie held a lecturer appointment with the Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies where she taught an undergraduate course entitled – Sustainability: From theory to practice in institutions.  Julie came to Yale from the University of New Hampshire, Office of Sustainability Programs (OSP) where she assisted with the development of the program since its inception in 1997.  Prior to her work with the OSP she worked for University Leaders for a Sustainable Future (ULSF). In 2004 Julie co-founded the Northeast Campus Sustainability Consortium, to advance education and action for sustainable development on university campuses in the northeast and maritime region.

Julie lectures and consults for universities both nationally and internationally, participates on a variety of boards and advisory committees and has contributed to a series of edited books and peer reviewed journals. Julie holds a BS in Natural Resource Policy and Management from the University of Michigan; an MS in Environmental Policy and Biology from Tufts University; and a Ph.D. in Natural Resources and Environmental Studies from the University of New Hampshire.

See below for a list of Julie Newman's publications related to campus sustainability.

Journal Articles

Weber, S., Newman, J. (2017).  Ecoregional analysis applied to campus sustainability  performance.  International Journal of Sustainability in Higher Education.

Newman, J. (2012). An organizational change management framework for sustainability. Greener Management International. Galea , C. [Ed.].  pp. 65-75(11).

Newman, J ; Rauch, J. (2009). Institutionalizing a greenhouse gas commitment at Yale. International Journal of Sustainability in Higher Education. Vol. 10 Issue: 4, 390 - 400.
 
Newman, J. (2009). Education for Sustainability – Designing an educational system for sustainability. Encyclopedia of Sustainability. Great Barrington, Massachusetts: Berkshire Publishing Group, LLC.
 
Newman, J.; Weber, S.; Bookhart, D. (2009) Institutionalizing campus-wide sustainability: A programmatic approach. Sustainability: Journal of Record. vo.2 no.3.
 
Newman, J.; Rauch, J. (2009). Defining sustainability metric targets in an institutional setting. International Journal of Sustainability in Higher Education. v. 10. n.2., 107 – 116.

Newman, J.; Rauch, J. (2008). Zeroing in on sustainability. Sustainability: Journal of Record. vo. 1. no.6, 387-390.
 
Newman, J. (2008). Reconceptualizing a model for service learning in the context of a sustainable campus. Practical approaches to ethics for colleges and universities. New Directions for Higher Education. No. 142. , 17 – 24.

Book Chapters
 
Newman, J. (2010). Sustainability education. Siever, B. (Ed.). The Spirit of Sustainability Encyclopedia [pp.148-150]. Great Barrington, Massachusetts: Berkshire Publishing Group, LLC.
 
Newman, J. (2007). The impacts of cell phones and laptops in a sustainable world.  Kleiman, S. (Ed).  Displacing Place: Mobile Communication in the 21 st Century. [pp.77-83] New York, New York: Peter Lang Publishing.
 
Newman, J. (2006). The role of a campus sustainability professional in facilitating institutional reform. 147 Tips for Teaching Sustainability [pp.99-102]. Timpson, W. [Ed]. Madison, Wisconsin: Attwood Publishing.
 
Newman, J., Abrams, E. (2005). Organizational structure and rational choice: Unveiling the obstacles to integrating sustainability into decision-making in an institution of higher education. Leal Filho, W.(Ed) Handbook of Sustainability Research. Frankfurt, Germany: Peter Lang Scientific Publishing.

Edited Volumes
 
Newman, J. (Ed.). (June 2011). Green Education: An A-to-Z Guide. (vol.7). Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications, Inc.
 
Newman, J. (Ed). (June, 2011).  Green Ethics and Philosophy: An A-to-Z Guide (vol. 8). Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications, Inc.
 
Newman, J. Fernandez, L. (2007).  Strategies for Institutionalizing Sustainability in Higher Education – Report on the Northeast Campus Sustainability Consortium 3rd Annual Conference. Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies. Report n.10. New Haven, CT: FES.
Books
 
Newman, J. (2009). Reaching Beyond Compliance: The Challenges of Achieving Campus Sustainability. Germany: VDM Publishing.

Conference Proceedings & Professional Reports
 
Newman, J.  (2005, April). Strategies for integrating sustainability into higher education: A case analysis of Yale University.  United Nations Decade of Education for Sustainable Development – The role of higher education institutions. Graz, Austria.

Newman, J. (2002, August).  What keeps universities from fully embracing sustainability principles?: A presentation of a conceptual framework for research. Conference proceedings of the National Association of Environmental Education.
 
Newman, J. (2001, October).  Consumer choice, sustainability, and a constructivist pedagogy. Conference proceedings of the National Association of Environmental Education.

Informational Articles and Instructional Materials
 
Newman, J. (2003, November). Is eating a moral act?: An exploration from agrarianism to consumerism.  The Center for the Humanities Newsletter. No. 2

Newman, J. ;  Diezel, J. (2001, January) Continuing connections through the curriculum and community.  Connections  Newsletter. Vol.16. No.1

Emma Corbalan
Emma Corbalan
Project Manager for Sustainable Design and Construction

Emma Corbalan recently joined MIT as a Project Manager for Sustainable Design and Construction.  Emma will spend her first 18 months with the Office of Sustainability, then move to Campus Planning and then integrate into Campus Construction.

Email Emma

Emma is a licensed architect and project manager with ten years of experience leading projects, primarily in the life science and corporate commercial sectors.  Her personal and professional interests are focused on the design and execution of sustainable, high-performance buildings.  As a member of her previous firm’s Sustainability Leadership Team, she was responsible for leading sustainable design initiatives, reporting of annual project energy performance as part of the 2030 initiative, supporting project teams seeking LEED certification, and presenting course material on sustainable design strategies and the LEED rating system.
 
Emma holds a Bachelors of Architecture from Syracuse University and a Masters of Business Administration from Boston University, with a concentration in Energy and Environmental Sustainability.  Emma is a member of the Commercial Real Estate Women (CREW) Boston Sustainability Networking Group, and is the Vice-Chair of the USGBC MA Chapter Advocacy Committee, which promotes legislation, initiatives and policies that will advance sustainable building practices in Massachusetts.

Rebecca Fowler
Rebecca Fowler
Senior Administrative Assistant

Rebecca provides administrative support to all staff members in the Office of Sustainability. She joined the office in March 2016 and acts in the role of office manager, human resources administrator, and event planner. 

Email Rebecca

Rebecca has over 5 years of experience as an administrative professional. She recently was named a co-chair for the MIT Working Green Committee, a group that promotes sustainability among staff members. Prior to joining the Office she worked for the MIT Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering as an assistant to three prominent faculty. Rebecca has a M.Sc. In Environmental Social Science from the University of Kent and a B.A. In Anthropology from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst.

Brian Goldberg
Brian Goldberg
Sustainability Project Manager

Brian Goldberg, LEED AP BD+C AIPC, is an environmental planner who joined MIT in June 2016 to help advance projects in climate, stormwater, land and waste management.

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He brings 15 years experience working with cities, communities, not-for-profits and private developers to optimize environmental and social benefits while mitigating risks.  Brian’s perspectives are drawn from urban and rural projects in the U.S., Africa, Asia, Australia and the Caribbean.  He comes to MIT after a decade at the global engineering, planning and design firm AECOM and was previously working for the United Nations and James Corner Field Operations.  He holds a Master of Environmental Management from Yale University and a B.A. in Political Science from Union College.

Susy Jones
Susy Jones
Sustainability Project Manager

Susy joined MIT to work on campus sustainability in January 2013. In her role, she works closely with administrative staff, faculty, students, and community members to integrate sustainability into the Institute. She worked alongside leaders at the Institute to help develop the strategic framework for the Office during its launch in 2013. She currently works on a range of projects related to mobility, food systems, materials management, student engagement, and outreach.

Email Susy

Susy has fifteen years of experience building networks to advance healthy, sustainable communities. Before her arrival at MIT, she was a Program Manager at Northeast Energy Efficiency Partnerships in Lexington, Mass., where she worked to advance regional, state, and local energy efficiency policies related to schools, public facilities, and building energy codes. Susy began her career in Philadelphia where she worked to increase nutritious, local food options in Philadelphia neighborhoods, managing the city’s landmark nutrition education program in 70 public schools. She currently sits on the City of Cambridge's Recycling Advisory Committee. Susy has an M.A. in Urban & Environmental Planning & Policy from Tufts University and a B.A. in English from Bryn Mawr College.

Steve Lanou
Steven Lanou
Sustainability Project Manager

Steve helped to establish the Office of Sustainability in 2013. Prior to this, Steve was leading campus sustainability efforts as Deputy Director within the Environment, Health and Safety Headquarters Office at MIT since 2005.

Email Steve

In this new capacity, Steve works to develop, promote, and coordinate MIT-wide policies and programs to advance the Institute’s commitment to sustainable practices, while integrating campus-focused research and learning opportunities with MIT’s faculty, students, and the broader community. Steve serves on a number of advisory and working committees serving the Institute, the Cities of Cambridge and Boston, and his hometown of Winchester. He is an active volunteer with the Cambridge Schools Volunteers where he has mentored 5th and 6th grade students for ten years.

Before joining MIT, Steve worked in a variety of environmental research and planning capacities in management consulting, technical consulting, and non-profit policy research, including the World Resources Institute, United Nations Development Programme, World Bank, and Arthur Andersen.

Steve is an environmental planner by training with 20 years experience in environmental policy development and program implementation.  He holds a Bachelors degree in international economic development from Brown University, and a Masters degree in environmental policy and planning from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

Derek Wietsma
Derek Wietsma
Senior Data Analyst

Derek joined the Office of Sustainability in January 2016. Derek is helping the office build out a dynamic data practice that tracks operational performance and enhances institutional decision-making. He has experience working with a variety of statistical software to clean, transform, and analyze complex datasets.

Email Derek

In addition, Derek has experience developing interactive and user-friendly dashboards to visualize analysis results.

Most recently, Derek worked as a contractor for the Department of Homeland Security analyzing trends in large volumes of international traveler data. He received a Master of Public Affairs degree from Indiana University’s School of Public and Environmental Affairs in 2014. His academic specializations are in economic development, public finance, and sustainability. 

Paul Wolff
Paul Wolff
Project Manager

Paul joined the Office of Sustainability in August 2016 as the Living Lab and Strategic Engagement Project Manager. Paul is a life-long “maker,” with experience working in the non-profit, corporate and higher education sectors in a variety of administrative, leadership and academic appointments.

Email Paul

He has applied his knowledge of fine arts, music, architecture and of emerging learning theories to create three-dimensional educational tools such as the I-SMART House, an interactive model of green building best practices that was used as the lynchpin of a multi-state educational outreach program sponsored by National Grid. Other inventions include the Duct Dawgs (dog-shaped mannequins illustrating building science principles), and the How-to-Build Better Exhibit, a large-scale, multi-media art display, commissioned by the Long Island Power Authority.

Paul studied art at the Maryland Institute, earned a Master of Architecture Degree from Harvard University and received a Doctor of Education Degree from the University of Pennsylvania last year. His dissertation explored the similarities and differences of physical and virtual place making, and the extent to which the approach may impact the learning experience for students and/or the shape of learning spaces in the future. He is currently researching the use of alternative forms of scholarship such as comics and graphic novels to create and disseminate academic research.

Paul’s work has received recognition from organizations such as Second Nature, the National Council for Marketing and Public Relations, the Kresge Foundation and the Massachusetts Department of Transportation. He is affiliated with organizations such as the International Visual Literacy Association (IVLA), Maker Faire, Secret Knock and Ecolibrium, a Massachusetts-based cable access TV show.

Student Fellows

MITOS Student Fellows

Our students develop meaningful work to advance a sustainable campus at MIT and to build their professional experience in institutional transformation. We hire both undergraduate and graduate students to help shape the future of sustainability at MIT and beyond.

Check out our open fellowship postings here.

Meet our current student fellows!
effie
Effie Jia
Communications, Design, and Digital Strategy Fellow

Effie joined the Office of Sustainability in September 2017. In her role, she reports on a range of sustainability topics at MIT, from climate action to research from faculty and students. She writes and edits articles on sustainability issues for print and web-based media. She also creates visual and written communication material for MITOS as part of its design and digital strategy.

Currently, Effie is a sophomore pursuing a BSA in the undergraduate architecture program, with a minor in sustainability as well as entrepreneurship and innovation. Having grown up in the Bay Area, she is inspired by the intersection of architecture and sustainability. Before coming to MIT, she did multiple summers of research on organic photovoltaics. Her passion for the environment has led her to participate in MIT groups such as Terrascope, UA Sustainability, the Environmental Solutions Initiative, and now the Office of Sustainability.

andrew
Yimou (Andrew) Li
Analytics and Visualization Fellow

Andrew joined the Office of Sustainability in September 2017. In his role, Andrew is responsible for facilitating the completion of the Sustainability Tracking, Assessment & Rating System (STARS) report for MIT, using open source programs, statistical techniques, and visualization tools to clean and analyze sustainability datasets and create insightful data analytics. Currently, he is working on a project that examines how campus emission and energy consumption fluctuations can be attributed to and predicted by weather variables.

Andrew is a Master of Finance student at MIT Sloan. He received B.Sc. in Applied – Economics from Brown University before coming to MIT. His enthusiasm and involvement in campus sustainability and environmental issues originated from United World College Red Cross Nordic in Flekke, Norway. There, he, with his dear friends from Finland, Lithuania, and Ghana, co-chaired a student organization, LEAF (Living for Environment and Future), that focused on both local and global sustainability issues.

cristina
Cristina Logg
Sustainable Procurement Fellow

Cristina joined the Office of Sustainability in June 2017. In her role, she is examining MIT’s procurement practices and researching best-in-class sustainable procurement policies from comparable institutions with the goal of identifying opportunities for MIT to expand its sustainable procurement procedures.

Cristina is a Master's in City Planning candidate in the Environmental Policy and Planning group of the Department of Urban Studies and Planning at MIT. She is also pursuing the Sustainability Certificate through the Sloan School of Business’s Sustainability Initiative.

rachel
Rachel Perlman
Sustainable Materials Management Fellow

Rachel joined the Office of Sustainability in September 2016. In her role, she is helping identify opportunities for MIT to reduce its environmental impact via reducing its materials footprint. Rachel is a PhD student within the MIT's Institute for Data, Systems, and Society. Her dissertation closely aligns with her work in the office; the project is being carried out as a collaboration between the Environmental Solutions Initiative (ESI) and the Office of Sustainability. For the project, she is studying material flows at MIT as a case study to understand better the fundamentals of material consumption and waste management of universities situated in a larger urban context. Rachel is dedicated to applying her work directly to decision-making to improve the material efficiency on campus.

Her research interests fall in the areas of sustainable waste management, industrial ecology, and urban sustainability. She completed her master’s degree in Technology and Policy (MIT) in 2015. She conducted her master’s research with Dr. Randolph Kirchain in the Materials Systems Lab. Her master’s thesis focused on the environmental, economic, and social implications of organic waste management systems in India.  As a Fellow within the Tata Center for Technology and Design, she traveled to India several times to collaborate with a waste-picker cooperative and to collect primary data.

Before MIT she worked for a year assessing the life cycle emissions of computers with a start-up company called Life Cycle Analytics.  She received her B.S. in Science of Natural and Environmental Systems from Cornell University in 2012.  At Cornell, she worked as the sustainability coordinator for Cornell Dining Services, leading efforts to increase composting rate, source food locally, prevent front-of-house food waste, and train staff on sustainable practices.  She also worked as a research assistant studying water quality, soil contaminants, and urban stormwater pollutants (the topic of her honor's thesis). 

faina
Faina Rozental
Climate Change Resiliency Fellow

Faina joined the Office of Sustainability in September 2017. In her role, Faina is supporting the research and planning needs of MIT’s campus-based climate preparedness and adaptation efforts. She is working to map and address climate risks for resiliency and emergency management. Faina is also researching how climate change risks can be incorporated into MIT’s business continuity planning.

Faina is currently pursuing an MBA with a focus on finance and sustainability at the MIT Sloan School of Management. Previously, Faina managed social due diligence at Root Capital, an impact investment fund supporting Latin American and African agricultural businesses that are operating sustainably and creating economic opportunities for local communities. Prior to Root Capital, she worked in sales and marketing for the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD). Faina graduated from Boston University with a BA/MA in Economics and an BA in International Relations.

Jobs and Fellowships

Join our dynamic team

Join our team of creative individuals working towards a more sustainable MIT. As our role on campus continues to grow and evolve, we'll post both full-time and student fellowship positions to meet our goals.


plants


Full-time Positions

There are currently no full-time positions open at MITOS. Be sure to check back soon!


Student Fellowships

The MIT Office of Sustainability (MITOS) is currently seeking student applicants for three part-time paid Sustainability Fellowships for Academic Year 2017/18. Join a dynamic, collaborative office that is developing MIT’s next generation vision of campus sustainability.

Overview (for all positions):

Hours: Full time, 10 hour/week (September-May)
Pay Range: $15-$18
Open to: Upper-level undergraduate and graduate students. MIT students only.

Qualifications (for all positions):

  • Strong interest and demonstrated experience in sustainability and materials management issues as they relate to urban and/or campus sustainability as well as a desire to impact the future of MIT and sustainability in higher education and beyond;

  • Excellent written, visual and oral communication skills, including presentation of complex data

  • Strong quantitative data collection, management, and analysis, including proficiency in Excel;

  • Ability to work independently with minimal supervision.

  • Demonstrated coursework in water, land, energy, materials, food systems, and/or building-related topics within the Departments of Architecture, Urban Studies and Planning, Civil and Environmental Engineering, Materials Science and Engineering, Mechanical Engineering or similar.

To apply: Send a resume and cover letter to mitosjobs@mit.edu with the name of the position in the subject line.

See below for descriptions of each positions and associated qualifications.


Academic Year Student Fellows

The Urban Living Lab Fellow

The Urban Living Lab Fellow will help to document campus-based research through the creation of Learning Adventure Cards, Lablets and Mini-Videos that tell the story of campus-based research and summarize problems, solutions and challenges of current and previous work utilizing the MIT campus as a test bed for innovation. The information collected about campus based research will provide the basis for the creation of a new database that will function as a platform for understanding the unique phenomena of place-based research at MIT and its outcomes.

This position requires an interest in campus-based research, a passion for storytelling, excellent writing and people skills, familiarity with working in front of and behind the camera, and experience with fine arts, graphic design, public art installation, museum exhibit design and/or video production.

Duties will include:

  • Creation of materials associated with Learning Adventure Cards (strategic awareness platform)

  • Creation of mini-videos associated with campus-based research

  • Management of the Living Lab database of campus-based research assets

  • Cultivation of Lablets (prototypes for new campus-based research)

  • Provide additional support to Office of Sustainability projects as needed

MIT Carbon Neutrality Research Fellowship

Timothy Gutowski, Professor of Mechanical Engineering and Julie Newman, Director, MIT Office of Sustainability (MITOS), are currently seeking student applicants for a part-time paid Carbon Neutrality Research Fellowship for the 2017-2018 academic year. The fellow will support the development of a new spring 2018 course entitled “Solving for Carbon Neutrality at MIT”.

Overview:

Hours: Part time, approximately 10 hours/week (September-May)
Pay Range: $15-$18
Open to: MIT Undergraduate and Graduate students.

Solving for carbon neutrality at MIT requires a deep understanding of technology options, and human behaviors, as well as regional, state and municipal energy production and distribution systems, economic frameworks and policy. The course will be designed for students to consider the local, state, regional and national context of solving for carbon neutrality and inform the development of the pathways they design. Students will be challenged to leverage the campus as a test bed for understanding climate adaptation and mitigation in this context.

Duties will include:

The purpose of this fellowship is to support the faculty in the design of the course and begin to research the meaning of Carbon Neutrality at MIT.

Review and synthesize existing literature/research on carbon neutral campus strategies; research and synthesize local, state, regional energy regulations; conduct preliminary analysis of the impact of possible carbon reduction scenarios beyond the existing MIT 32% greenhouse gas emission plan, including expected reduction in GHG emissions and affects on wider MIT operations; support the course during the spring semester as questions emerge from students and class discussions.

Qualifications:

  • Strong interest and demonstrated experience in policy and institutional responses to climate change as well as a desire to impact the future of MIT and sustainability in higher education and beyond;

  • Excellent written and oral communication skills, including presentation of complex data;

  • Strong quantitative data collection, management, and analysis skills, including proficiency in Excel;

  • Ability to work independently with minimal supervision;

  • Coursework: policy, urban planning, energy, and/or building-related topics. Some background in engineering thermodynamics would be helpful.

Contact Us

Contact us

We look forward to hearing from you. Send us your comments, questions, and ideas for creating a more sustainable MIT.


contact


General Office Contact:

Email: sustainableMIT@mit.edu
Phone: (617) 715-4060

Office Location:

Building NE-49, 3rd Floor, Suite 3161
600 Technology Square
Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Cambridge, MA 02139

Mailing Address:

Office of Sustainability
Massachusetts Institute of Technology
77 Massachusetts Avenue, NE49-3161
Cambridge, MA 02139