Research

From 2009 to 2016, Yale Climate & Energy Institute was a nexus for integrating efforts by Yale faculty, staff and students—scientists, engineers, architects, social scientists, and policy makers—to study climate change and its links to modern energy use. Nearly 80 faculty across the university led YCEI activities, with many more participating through collaboration or attendance. A sampling of the full array of institute activities during its first 5 years can be found in the 2014 YCEI newsletterResearch associated with YCEI drew on expertise in many different fields, among them:

    Geology and Geophysics, including Atmospheric, Ocean, and Climate Science
    Mechanical, Chemical, Electrical and Environmental Engineering
    Forestry & Environmental Studies
    Biospheric Studies and Remote Sensing
    Political Science and Communications

    Chemistry, Physics and Applied Physics
    Ecosystem Ecology and Population Dynamics
    Public Health and Infectious Disease
    Economics
    Architecture and Design
    Urban Studies
    Law, Policy and Regulation
    History and Anthropology

YCEI awarded 21 seed grants to Yale faculty for multidisciplinary research in climate and energy. These projects engaged 42 principal investigators (PIs) from 13 different departments and schools. The graph below shows the interconnections among the faculty on YCEI projects. The lines originate from the lead PI, with the color of the PI’s home department or school, and connect to co-PIs. YCEI seed grants totaled $2.1 million, and helped leverage an additional $8 million in external research funding. These projects, many of which were nucleated by YCEI workshops and symposia and brought to fruition by students and postdocs, resulted in more than 80 scholarly publications, changing the ways that scientific and policy leaders think about critical issues such as the historical record of climate change and its impact on violence and conflict, the global census of trees and their potential for carbon sequestration, and the storage of large volumes of CO2 underground while minimizing the risk of inducing earthquakes.