The Food and Sustainability Working Group at MIT set out in fall 2017 to recommend concrete strategies for how the MIT campus can further provide access to healthy, affordable food through systems and processes that consider the health, social, and environmental impacts of food procurement, production, consumption, and waste on campus.
The food we eat. The design of our built environment. The technology we use everyday. The resilience of the community to withstand climatic events. All of these factors and many more are intricately linked to both the health of people and the planet.
Supporting a healthy and vibrant community
At the MIT Office of Sustainability (MITOS), we seek to explore these connections and work with our operational and research partners to activate campus systems that promote public health, environmental sustainability, economic vitality and innovation in our local and global communities.
MIT’s location along the Charles River and its proximity to a rich transit network make walking, biking, and car-free travel possible for many members of the community. The Institute also offers several programs and initiatives designed to promote wellness on campus. Our dining partners have begun to integrate health and sustainability into their menus and operations. New buildings and renovation projects are presenting opportunities to rethink our indoor environments and urban landscapes.
Building on this work, MITOS seeks to work with our partners to further explore:
The ways in which our built and natural environments can promote healthy lifestyles and community resilience
The ways we procure, produce, and consume food on campus
The critical relationship between our campus food system and climate change
The health-related co-benefits of low-carbon transportation to, from, and around campus
MITOS is currently working collaboratively to transform the campus food system and build a campus that promotes health and well-being via operations, education, research, and innovation in the following areas.
Access MIT represents the Institute’s progressive vision for rethinking the culture of commuting and encouraging sustainable transportation practices. Access MIT provides benefits to employees that choose active, sustainable modes of commuting.
MITOS is part of a community of departments, labs, and centers working toward elements of a sustainable campus. Featured below are initiatives from some of our partners.
The MindHandHeart Initiative taps into MIT’s passionate community spirit and innovative problem-solving skills to enhance mental health and overall well-being at MIT.
Community Wellness at MIT Medical works with the entire MIT community to provide the resources and programs that can help you make healthy choices, from yoga to healthful eating.
GetFit strives to make MIT a healthier community by encouraging participants to exercise regularly via a challenge, which typically runs from early February through April.
The Open Agriculture (“OpenAg”) Initiative at the MIT Media Lab is on a mission to bring out the farmer in everyone by creating healthier, more engaging, and more inventive food systems. OpenAg is building collaborative tools and platforms to develop an open-source ecosystem of food technologies.
MIT Dining manages numerous venues and programs to provide food to students and community members, from residential dining halls to retail cafes.
In addition to providing health and wellness services to the community, MIT Medical is an active partner in integrating sustainability into the campus health framework, from public health and climate resiliency planning to healthy commuting practices.