This component of the Dow Sustainability Fellowship Program is designed to create a new generation of sustainability scholars who understand the necessity of collaborating across disciplines and sectors to address and solve complex sustainability challenges. It provides opportunities for fellows to interact intensively with interesting, talented people across disciplines; to learn skills and gain knowledge that will enrich subsequent research; and engage in an intellectual environment with unique professional opportunities. Primary goals are to:
- Foster cross-campus, cross-disciplinary collaborations on sustainability challenges
- Integrate new approaches and research in interdisciplinary sustainability research
- Enhance social sciences applied to sustainability issues at U-M
To achieve these goals, the program seeks accomplished, connected, and motivated candidates working on sustainability at the interface of the social sciences, natural sciences, and/or engineering, with preference given to appointments in social science departments. The six fellows selected each year are expected to benefit U-M faculty, existing research programs, and the University as a whole by bringing in new ideas and approaches, creating enhanced engagement across campus and among disciplines.
Each fellow has a two-year appointment in a U-M academic department and a concurrent two-year appointment as a program fellow, with appointments following traditional academic cycles. Each fellow receive a $52,000 annual stipend plus benefits and access to $2-5k/yr for travel and research. The program provides approximately 50% of this funding, with the remainder shared between the postdoc's home academic unit and a sustainability-oriented collaborating partner; (e.g., department, institute, center, lab, etc.). The home academic unit and/or collaborating partner must provide any additional funding required for salaries to be competitive in their discipline. Alternative funding models may be considered on a case-by-case basis. Note: Teaching appointments used as a funding mechanism require the fellow to join LEO.
Postdoctoral fellows are required to participate in the program’s co-curricular activities. They are also encouraged to mentor doctoral and masters/professional degree fellows as appropriate, and participate in the proposal competition for the Distinguished Awards for Interdisciplinary Sustainability.