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Fung Global Fellows to focus on ‘Sustainable Futures’

Seven exceptional scholars from around the world will come to Princeton University this fall to begin a year of research, writing and collaboration as the ninth cohort of Fung Global Fellows. Six will engage in their fellowship virtually; one will be on campus.
Tuesday, June 29, 2021

Seven exceptional scholars from around the world will come to Princeton University this fall to begin a year of research, writing and collaboration as the ninth cohort of Fung Global Fellows. Six will engage in their fellowship virtually; one will be on campus.

The Fung Global Fellows Program, administered by the Princeton Institute for International and Regional Studies (PIIRS), has, in the past, brought together international research scholars in the social sciences and humanities. For the 2021-22 academic year, however, scholars will work on “Sustainable Futures,” which will broaden the program’s interdisciplinary approach, and include perspectives from architecture, engineering and law. Stephen Kotkin, the John P. Birkelund ’52 Professor in History and International Affairs, co-director of the Program in History and the Practice of Diplomacy, and director of PIIRS, will serve as acting director of the program for the 2021-22 academic year.

“Topics will include responses to COVID-19; AI technologies in free societies; state attempts to manage energy transitions, and energy poverty even in rich countries; soil’s transcendent importance in mitigating adverse environmental phenomena; the craft of sustainable architecture using solely local materials; and the implications of transregional environmental law in Latin America and the Caribbean for the rest of the world,” Kotkin said. “For the first time, the Fung Global Fellows program has a scholar who will engage in laboratory work, on solar energy.”

Six of the seven scholars will again engage virtually, rather than on campus, due to current coronavirus-related travel restrictions. Han Ul Min, a postdoctoral fellow, will be in residence at Princeton this fall. Barry Rand, associate professor of electrical engineering and the Andlinger Center for Energy and the Environment, will be supervising Han Ul’s research.

“The pandemic has profoundly reconfirmed how much the world is and will remain interdependent,” Kotkin added. “Our incoming Fellows come from all over the globe, a supreme challenge for an online program.”

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