Centers and Institutes: Environmental Institutions and Governance

Colorado State University is a leader in environmental governance research.

Center for Advancement of Sustainable Enterprise (CASE)

The Center for the Advancement of Sustainable Enterprise (CASE) stands at the intersections of the academy and industry, science and the marketplace, past and future. Applied, as opposed to theoretical, CASE delivers actionable knowledge at an operational level through a variety of programs.


Director: Carl Hammerdorfer

Center for Disaster and Risk Analsysis

The Center for Disaster and Risk Analysis (CDRA) at Colorado State University is dedicated to reducing the harm and losses caused by natural, technological, and human-caused disasters. Central to achieving this goal is learning how social inequality impacts the ability of marginalized groups to prepare for, respond to, and recover from disaster.

This center is currently in a reorganizational status. Until the center is operational again, feel free to email Sam Zahran for further information.

Co-Director: Sammy Zahran -

Center for Protected Area Management and Training

Sound management, provided by trained professionals, and citizen support will ensure the maintenance of these important areas which anchor the success of nature conservation into the 21st century. The Center for Protected Area Management & Training was formed to assist protected area professionals in strengthening the management of the world's protected areas and adjacent lands.


Co-Director: Jim Barborak
Co-Director: Ryan Finchum

Center for the New Energy Economy

The Center for the New Energy Economy, established in 2011, is a national policy center focused on building the new energy economy. Former Colorado Gov. Bill Ritter serves as director for the Center, as well as and Senior Scholar within CSU's School of Global Environmental Sustainability. The Center for the New Energy Economy, including salaries, is completely funded by private support, initially from the San Francisco-based Energy Foundation and the Fort Collins-based Bohemian Foundation.


Director: Bill Ritter, Jr.

Changing Climates at CSU

The Changing Climates Initiative is a campuswide project launched in 2007 and supported by faculty and researchers from every CSU college, whose interests and research unite around climate change. This effort helps faculty infuse information and research on climate content into their courses in all majors and disciplines. It also provides seminars to train faculty and staff on climate change topics.


Co-Director: SueEllen Campbell
Co-Director: John Calderazzo

Educating for Sustainability, Peace, and Reconciliation: Managing the Conflicts of Human Needs and Place with Finite Resources

As a Research Working Group for the School of Global Environmental Sustainability, this group will write and field test a number of case studies for use in classes across campus and with the general public about the threat of conflict and violence around natural resources issues and what constructive alternatives exist that support improved communication, deeper learning, critical and creative analyses, and cooperative possibilities.

Principal Investigators - William M. Timpson, School of Education; Louise Jennings, School of Education; Nathalie Kees, School of Education; and Leah Sprain, Communication Studies

Energy Institute

Energy is a central element of almost every major challenge and opportunity the world faces today. CSU has a long history of pioneering work in energy, with over 160 faculty developing energy technologies, exploring the economics, environmental, and sociological impacts of energy use, and proposing energy policy solutions.
The Institute aims to grow the impact, reach, and reputation of energy research and education at Colorado State University by increasing collaboration with industry and governmental partners, creating new research and educational opportunities for CSU faculty and students, and accelerating the dissemination of CSU solutions.
This cross-campus, interdisciplinary effort is operated under the Office of the Vice President for Research. The extensive network of researchers, research programs, and centers, spans all eight colleges at CSU, and extends off campus to a global network of public and private partners.


Directors: Morgan DeFoort, Bryan Willson, and Kenneth Reardon

Environmental Governance Working Group

The Environmental Governance Working Group is a multi-disciplinary community of scholars seeking to advance research on issues of environmental governance and sustainability.


Principal Investigators - Michele Betsill, Department of Political Science; Tony Cheng, Department of Forest, Rangeland and Watershed Stewardship; and Pete Taylor, Department of Sociology.

Institute for the Study of Energy and our Future

The Institute for the Study of Energy and Our Future, formed in fall 2008, is an organization that facilitates research on, and coordinates education about, energy issues and their impact on society and policy. ISEOF was founded as part of the Clean Energy Supercluster and includes members of the departments of Political Science, Economics, and Sociology. ISEOF sponsors workshops, outreach projects, and other public events.


Director: Kyle Saunders

Scenario Planning Institute

The purpose of the Scenario Planning Institute is to create new knowledge about scenario planning and advance scenario-planning practices through research, focused projects and capacity building. Scenario planning is a discipline for developing multiple imagined futures in which decisions about the future can be played out, for the purposes of changing thinking, improving decision-making, fostering human and organization learning and improving performance.


Director: Thomas Chermack
Co-Director: Susan Lynham