Attend the online Climate Grand Challenges Workshops

October 15, 2020
Maria T. Zuber, Vice President for Research | Richard Lester, Associate Provost for International Activities, 2015–2023 |

To the members of the MIT community,

We are writing to update you on the MIT Climate Grand Challenges research effort and to let you know about a series of climate-related research workshops that will take place in the coming weeks.

As you may recall, over the summer President Reif announced the launch of Climate Grand Challenges to help define a new agenda of transformative research at MIT. By late September, nearly 100 Letters of Interest had been submitted by over 300 MIT faculty and research scientists representing all five schools and the college. This is an exciting response that highlights both the strong commitment at MIT to address the escalating climate crisis and the remarkable ability of our community to mobilize our intellectual resources around this global challenge, even in the midst of a devastating pandemic.

To help advance the ideas outlined in these letters, we will hold 16 workshops, organized by broad topic area, starting later this month. The purpose of these workshops is to provide opportunities for the letter authors to present, discuss, and refine their submissions and to connect with other researchers working in related areas.

There may also be opportunities for principal investigators to submit new letters, augmenting and linked to the topics discussed at the workshops. The final deadline for submission of Letters of Interest is November 30. By mid-January, we expect to invite 30–40 of the project teams to prepare full White Papers providing more detail on their Grand Challenge ideas.

Although these will be technical discussions, all members of the MIT community are welcome to attend the online workshops. The full schedule is listed here.

We are looking forward to a series of stimulating and productive sessions.


Richard K. Lester, Associate Provost

Maria T. Zuber, Vice President for Research