The Cornell Systems Scholars seeks candidates from a broad range of disciplines including the biological, physical, and social sciences, and technical, medical, and engineering fields related to the environment and sustainability. “Science,” “scientist,” and “scientific” in these guidelines refer to the full range of these disciplines.
The program serves academic environmental scientists working in public and private academic and research institutions of various sizes in Canada, Mexico, and the United States. It targets mid‐career researchers (typically mid 30s to early 50s in age) whose contributions to environmental science and leadership in addressing pressing sustainability issues will be significantly enhanced by receiving a Fellowship.
The program does not accept applicants at the graduate or post-‐doctoral level. Individuals who work for government, NGOs, museums, and corporations are also ineligible for the core training program. Academic scientists with fewer than five years of experience since earning a Ph.D. and more than a year until tenure review are encouraged to apply in the future, although applications from exceptional early career candidates 4may be considered.
Candidates are reviewed on a range of criteria with an emphasis on scientific record, credibility, and judgment and the ability to take a leadership role in transferring environmental knowledge. Applicants must show, based on their activities to date, ability and promise in actively applying their expertise for the benefit of the environment and society.
Applicants from a wide range of disciplines are encouraged. All must demonstrate:
- A tenured or tenure-track faculty position;
- An active role in research and teaching in an area of environmental and sustainability science at a Canadian, Mexican, or U.S.-based institution of higher education or research;
- A reputation for outstanding science;
- Interest, willingness, and an appropriate professional position to synthesize, interpret, and communicate the results of their work, connect scientific knowledge and decision-making, and engage with stakeholders on solving sustainability challenges;
- Passion and capacity to exercise leadership in the environmental arena and enthusiasm to communicate science for improved environmental policies and practices;
- Commitment to participate in all the activities of the yearlong Fellowship, including both training sessions and the practice year in between;
- Intent to share what is learned in the training program with students, colleagues, and other stakeholders through courses, workshops, and other outreach efforts; and
- Desire to remain an active member of the Leopold Leadership Network after the conclusion of the fellowship year and assist other Fellows as mentors and coaches.
Applications are initially reviewed, scored, and ranked by members of the Cornell Systems Scholars Selection Jury to establish a pool of no more than 40 finalists. Fellows are reviewed and selected based on the three criteria detailed below