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Ogmius Newsletter

William Travis moderating a panel discussion at CSTPR’s 10 year anniversary celebration

William Travis moderating a panel discussion at CSTPR’s 10 year anniversary celebration.

Ogmius exchange


The CIRES Center for Science and Technology Policy Research conducts a wide array of research on issues where science and technology meet policy, with a particular emphasis on environmental issues. The Center hosts the university’s Graduate Certificate in Science and Technology Policy. On September 1, the Center welcomed Roger Pielke, Jr., as its new director. Professor William (Bill) Travis, who served as Director for the past 5 years, completed his term as Center director after overseeing substantial grow in the Center’s faculty and scope. He returns to the Geography Department where he will continue to teach and pursue research focused on human behavior in the environment, including studies of the human dimensions of climate change, land use and the interaction of people and ecosystems. His current projects focus on the theme of potential social response to extreme climate change, including warning systems, the most transformative and difficult adaptive choices, and risk analysis approaches to adaptation. His recent work includes a simulation of the decision process that enables resource managers to test the implications of multiple factors and decisions and assess the sensitivity of their choices to uncertain conditions.

Roger returns to the position, which he previous served in from 2001-2007 as founding director of the Center. Roger has been on the faculty of the University of Colorado since 2001 and is a Professor in the Environmental Studies Program and a Fellow of the Cooperative Institute for Research in Environmental Sciences (CIRES). His research focuses on science, innovation and politics as well as the governance of sports organizations. Roger holds degrees in mathematics, public policy and political science from the University of Colorado. Roger has received several awards and honors including an honorary doctorate from Linköping University in Sweden, the Public Service Award of the Geological Society of America, and the Eduard Brückner Prize for outstanding achievement in interdisciplinary climate research. He is also author, co-author or co-editor of seven books, including The Honest Broker: Making Sense of Science in Policy and Politics (2007) and The Climate Fix: What Scientists and Politicians Won’t Tell you About Global Warming (2010).

Comments welcome! info@sciencepolicy.colorado.edu

Interview with Roger Pielke, jr.

Ogmius: You were the founding director of the Center and stepped down in 2007. How has the Center changed since then?

Roger: Under the leadership of Professor Bill Travis the Center has grown significantly, with 5 full-time faculty members and a large number of students, staff and visitors. The Center’s work is more visible than ever. It is an exciting time to return to directing the Center.

Ogmius: What have you been doing over the past 5 years, and how does that work relate to your new role as Center director?

Roger: Over the past five years I was able to complete two books (The Climate Fix and Presidential Science Advisors (with Bobbie Klein)), and expand my research into two new areas. One new area is in the direction of innovation and economic growth and the other is in the area of the governance of international sport. I do hope to keep this new work at the focus of my research efforts going forward.

Roger Pielke, Jr. testifying before the Senate Committee  
on Environment and Public Works on July 18, 2013

Roger Pielke, Jr. testifying before the Senate Committee
on Environment and Public Works on July 18, 2013.

Ogmius: What changes have taken place in the science policy world in the past 5 years that you’d like the Center to address?

Roger: The roles of expertise and evidence in decision making continue to be of utmost importance. At the Center we study many topics related to the environment and climate change. I would like to see us begin to engage a more diverse set of topics in science and technology policy, and our expertise here has broad relevance in many contexts.

Ogmius: What is your vision for the Center over the next 5 years?

Roger: I’d like the Center to continue its record of excellence, and that should be easy as we have a stable full of smart and energetic faculty – Lisa Dilling, Ben Hale, Max Boykoff, and Deserai Crow. The potential of this group is amazing, and I expect that those familiar with the Center will be excited about the diversity of interesting work that is to come from this group.

Ogmius: What do you see as the Center’s biggest challenge in the next 5 years?

Roger: At the University of Colorado, budgets always are tough, by virtue of the large reduction in state support for the university. While we have always been successful in raising project funding, securing core support for the Center will require a renewed attention to fundraising. This means looking to individual donors and perhaps foundations to help institutionalize the Center in a more permanent fashion.

Ogmius: In 20 years what do you hope to look back at as the Center’s major achievements?

Roger: I hope people will look at the work of our Center – research, education, outreach – and be able to say that we’ve done work that has made a difference.

Roger Pielke, Jr.

Roger Pielke, Jr. was the 2012 recipient of the Geological Society of America’s Public Service Award

Roger Pielke, Jr. was the 2012 recipient of the Geological Society of America’s Public Service Award.

Roger Pielke, Jr.’s Science Policy Blog

Roger Pielke, Jr.’s Sports Policy Blog

Breakthrough Institute Column by Roger Pielke, Jr.

Bridges Column by Roger Pielke, Jr.