The Earth Institute at Columbia University

SummaryAcknowledgementIntroductionWhy Should We Help?The BenefitsThe Venture ItselfHow to Avoid the Marie Antoinette SyndromeThe Action PlanConclusionSelected Bibliography


Columbia University in New York recently established a research and environmental centre called the Earth Institute, now under the directorship of none other than Jeffery Sachs. Its mandate is to “. . . take on the interconnected challenges of climate, environmental management, conservation, public health, and economic development. (Sachs, 2005, p. 223)

Columbia’s president, Lee Bollinger, told Sachs of (his vision that Columbia University . . . lead the way in the United States to become a truly global university.) (Sachs, 2005, p. 224) The Earth Institute has focussed on research and developing (specialized expertise) (Sachs, 2005, p. 224), but Sachs is using its findings in his Millennium Villages projects. (All of the UN Millenium Project work has depended utterly on the Earth Institute.) (Sachs, 2005, p. 224)

Some of the Earth Institute’s projects include

— using GPS in Ethiopia to respond to malaria epidemics

— using cell phone data in Rwanda to send health information to the government

— designing batteries for villages that are too isolated or cannot afford to join power grids. (Sachs, 2005, p. 224)

Perhaps BCIT could form a partnership with the Earth Institute to try out and use in the village any applicable resources it develops. We would test these resources in the field and then provide feedback on their usefulness and suggest any modifications and/or improvements.


Read More: Other PartnershipsForming Partnerships and Getting FundingWhat Is NeededAdopt a VillageThe Earth Institute at Columbia UniversityAdopt An Educational InstituteHow Students Could Be Involved