Director's Welcome

stavins photoWelcome to the Harvard Environmental Economics Program (HEEP), an important part of a diverse set of Harvard environmental initiatives, which brings together faculty and graduate students from across the University engaged in research, teaching, and outreach in environmental and resource economics and related public policy.

HEEP has been affiliated since its inception with the Harvard University Center for the Environment and housed within the Kennedy School’s Mossavar-Rahmani Center for Business and Government. In early 2007, Harvard received a generous capital gift from Enel SpA (see press release), a progressive Italian corporation involved in energy production worldwide, which established the Enel Endowment for Environmental Economics. The Enel Endowment provides a firm and sustainable foundation for the Harvard Environmental Economics Program, and has facilitated the expansion of our activities.

For example, in 2007, the Enel Endowment allowed HEEP to prepare a successful grant proposal to the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation for a two-year project to help identify promising successors to the Kyoto Protocol. For a more detailed description of the Harvard Project on Climate Agreements, see the Project's website.

The Harvard Environmental Economics Program draws upon Harvard’s tremendous strength in environmental and natural resource economics, spread across many units of the University, including the Faculty of Arts and Sciences, the Kennedy School, the Business School, the School of Public Health, the Graduate School of Design, and the Law School. HEEP has 31 Faculty Fellows, with representation from each of these schools. Our Fellows have great expertise and international reputations in environmental and natural resource economics, including senior faculty members who now hold or have held important positions at the President's Council of Economic Advisors, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's Science Advisory Board, the National Academy of Sciences, the World Health Organization, and the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. In addition, the Faculty Fellows include some of the brightest young talent in the field.

Just a small sample of topics addressed by HEEP Faculty Fellows would include such pressing issues as: global climate change, the use of incentive-based or market-based instruments for pollution control, new methods of valuing risk reduction, the relationship between globalization and the environment, the role of environmental considerations in business decision making, and the intersection of economic development and environmental protection.

This unique degree of faculty expertise is complemented by an exceptional group of doctoral students who serve as Pre-Doctoral Fellows of the Program. In addition to working closely with the Faculty Fellows and attending the regular Seminar in Environmental Economics and Policy, the Pre-Doctoral Fellows have their own Research Lunch Seminar, which allows them to benefit from each other's experience.

Doctorate recipients who have focused on environmental and resource economics at Harvard have received offers to become assistant professors at such institutions as Yale University, the University of California at Berkeley, Duke University, Dartmouth College, the University of California at Los Angeles, the University of Maryland, and Harvard University. Others have received offers to become fellows at leading think tanks, such as Resources for the Future, or to join organizations such as the World Bank.

I invite you to learn more about the Harvard Environmental Economics Program. This website is designed to provide you with information about Harvard's expertise in this field and information about opportunities for graduate study. I believe you’ll be struck by the breadth and depth of Harvard’s expertise in this realm, and by the commitment of our faculty and students alike. If you have any questions about the program, please feel free to contact me or Robert Stowe, HEEP’s Executive Director.

Best Regards,
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Robert N. Stavins
A.J. Meyer Professor of Energy & Economic Development, Harvard Kennedy School
Director, Harvard Environmental Economics Program