Don Scavia has been appointed to the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine’s Roundtable on Science and Technology for Sustainability. The Roundtable provides a high-level forum for sharing views, information, and analyses related to harnessing science and technology for sustainability. Members include leading experts from academic institutions as well as senior decision-makers from government and industry who are positioned to mobilize new strategies and resources for sustainability. For over four decades, Scavia has led ground-breaking research on human impacts to water quality in the Great Lakes, Gulf of Mexico, the Chesapeake Bay, and other coastal ecosystems. Prior to his roles at the University of Michigan, Scavia served as Chief Scientist for the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's National Ocean Service.
Established in 2002, the roundtable has adopted a two-pronged strategy to address sustainability:
Focus on Long-Term Science and Technology Strategy for Sustainability
Acknowledging that sustainability is an interdisciplinary topic that crosses domains, sectors, and institutions, the Roundtable launched a series of discussions to outline the major connections between human and environmental systems. In 2013-2014, the Roundtable, in collaboration with the Board on Energy and Environmental Systems (BEES) and the Water Science and Technology Board (WSTB), contributed to the emerging dialogue on the energy-water nexus, holding four related events. In 2015, the Roundtable will plan two events in June and November focusing on issues related to sustainability indicators and metrics.
As a second area of programmatic emphasis, the Roundtable is sharpening its focus on sustainability challenges in applied situations. In this context, Science and Technology for Sustainability (STS) works with specific communities within the Roundtable membership.
Supported by the George and Cynthia Mitchell Endowment for Sustainability, the Roundtable is the key component of the Science and Technology for Sustainability Program in the Policy and Global Affairs Division at the Academies.