Centers & Institutes

Institute for Global Agriculture & Technology Transfer

IGATT works in developing countries to address the local and global challenges that everyone faces in the areas of sustainable agriculture, efficient water use and healthy food systems. By working on agricultural innovation and enterprise  in the global space IGATT will develop best management practices and appropriate technologies to support the health and resiliency of communities around the world. The institute also provides scholastic opportunities for faculty and students for hands-on small farm research in Colorado and abroad.



Institute for Society, Landscape, and Ecosystem Change (ISLEC)

The ISLEC research working group allows faculty from across CSU to combine their expertise to address complex land-use problems such as deforestation, urbanization, the wildland/urban interface, desertification, and land degradation. Scientists use many tools including social and ecological computer modeling techniques and geographical information systems to better understand past and present land-use to predict future implications for both humans and ecosystems.


Principal Investigators - Kathleen Galvin, Anthropology; Chris Fisher, Anthropology

Institute for the Built Environment

The Institute for the Built Environment (IBE), founded in 1994 at CSU, is a multidisciplinary institute whose mission is to foster stewardship and sustainability of natural and built environments through research-based, interdisciplinary educational forums.


Director: Brian Dunbar

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

LENSES (Living Environments in Natural, Social, and Economic Systems)

LENSES (Living Environments in Natural, Social, and Economic Systems) is designed to lead teams through planning, designing and implementing transformative change to address pressing environmental, social and economic issues stemming from the built environment.


Principal Investigators - Brian Dunbar and Lenora Bohren, both with the Institute for the Built Environment

National Center for Vehicle Emissions Control and Safety

The National Center for Vehicle Emissions Control and Safety (NCVECS) at CSU is the only national university-based center dedicated to research and training related to the control and testing of motor vehicle emissions.

Director: Lenora Bohren

Natural Resource Ecology Laboratory

The Natural Resource Ecology Laboratory is an interdisciplinary ecology research and teaching unit at Colorado State University.  Our mission is to improve understanding of the complex interactions between humans, management activities, and ecosystems.


Director: John Moore

Next-generation Electricity Demand Response

This GCRT will generate initial results towards development of systematic methods for enabling the next-generation of electricity demand response programs, aimed at increasing free-market mechanisms in the end-user realm of the electricity grid. They will investigate new pricing techniques for retail electricity vendors---known as aggregators---that make a profit by representing aggregated electric loads on the end-user side and moving them away from the time of peak demand in the electricity grid. The uniqueness of their work is in minimizing the impact on the customer (i.e., loss of comfort) while maximizing the profit of the aggregator. The game-changing aspect of their approach is to estimate the coincident peak hour in the system (i.e., 1 hour in a month) and engage demand response through incentives, rather than impose a daily requirement on the end-user.

North Central Climate Science Center

To provide the best available climate science and tools to inform natural resource management within the North Central domain.


Northern Colorado Sustainable Systems Analysis Network

This team, which includes the City of Fort Collins, will connect the research needs of Northern Colorado’s local governments with sustainable systems analysts at CSU to evaluate strategies for climate mitigation, waste reduction, and water conservation. The team will bring important resources for this type of research to CSU and leverage existing research efforts for increased innovation and application.

Public Lands History Center

The Public Lands History Center (PLHC) in the College of Liberal Arts fosters the production of historical knowledge through collaborative engagement with institutions responsible for the sustainable stewardship of protected areas, water, and other critical resources. PLHC investigators and graduate students provide expertise in environmental history, historic preservation, Native American history, social history, museum studies, and cultural resource management. Ongoing research projects are funded by the National Park Service, the U.S. Forest Service, the Colorado Agricultural Experiment Station, and the City of Fort Collins.
Director: Mark Fiege

Research Institute for New Energy and the Environment

Colorado State University and East China Normal University in Shanghai have formed a Joint Research Institute for New Energy and the Environment that will capitalize on strengths of the two institutions to develop new energy solutions and help deal with the impact of energy on climate, air quality, land use and water resources. East China Normal University is one of Colorado State’s strategic partners in China with collaboration on student exchange programs and research initiatives in everything from music to clean energy.

More information:

Co-Director: Junhao Chu, East China Normal University
Co-Director: Bryan Willson, Colorado State University
Executive Director: Wei Gao, Colorado State University

Rocky Mountain Center for Crop Biosecurity

The center provided early detection, rapid diagnosis and response to potential acts of crop bioterrorism against plants and crops in the Rocky Mountain area and adjacent High Plains.

Co-Director: Howard Schwartz
Co-Director: William Brown Jr.

Rural Energy Center

Colorado State University Extension and CSU’s College of Engineering established the Rural energy Center in order to “empower agricultural producers in Colorado to make environmentally and financially sound energy decisions”. 
Co-Director: Mike Kostrzewa
Co-Director: Cary Weiner

Scaling up CSU's Center for Science Communication: Enhancing Interdisciplinarity to Communicate about Science and Sustainability

Confronting today’s most pressing global scientific and sustainability issues, we are faced with the added burden of polarized political, media, and public spheres. To address this challenge, this GCRT will develop and demonstrate interdisciplinary opportunities for the study and practice of science communication and the role of information in decision-making among members of the CSU community. Existing groups on CSU’s campus are engaging in both informal and formal science communication activities, including a Center for Science Communication in the Department of Journalism and Media Communication, as well as projects funded through federal- and university-sponsored grants and cooperative agreements. The GCRT will collaboratively pursue the development of a more formal University-wide center for science communication-related activities.