Jonathan Gilligan, Vanderbilt University professor of earth and environmental sciences and of civil and environmental engineering, has received a Fulbright U.S. Scholar Program award for the 2023–24 academic year from the U.S. Department of State and the Fulbright Foreign Scholarship Board.
Gilligan will be the visiting Fulbright Canada Research Chair in Digital Technologies and Sustainability at the University of Calgary, where they will work closely with experts in STEM education and sociology to develop computational tools and methods for educating students in classrooms. They will also be engaging with the general public about climate change and environmental sustainability, with an emphasis on reaching historically marginalized and underserved groups.
“These educational tools will make sophisticated computer models accessible and understandable,” Gilligan said. “Getting them into the hands of students and members of the public will help build trust and understanding of environmental science and the interactions between environmental change and human society. It will also facilitate more constructive kinds of public discourse around environmental problems.”
This project was inspired by a distinguished lecture series Gilligan organized in 2021, “Voicing Complexity: Publicness, Ethics, and Politics,” which was co-sponsored by Vanderbilt’s Climate and Society Grand Challenge Initiative and the Robert Penn Warren Center for the Humanities.
“My hope is that this project will become a catalyst for an ongoing close collaboration between Vanderbilt and the University of Calgary around cutting-edge research on environmental education and public outreach,” Gilligan said.
Gilligan joins more than 800 U.S. citizens who will teach or conduct research abroad for the 2023–24 academic year through the Fulbright U.S. Scholar Program. Since its inception in 1946, more than 400,000 participants from all backgrounds and fields—including recent university graduates, teachers, scientists, researchers, artists and others—from the United States and more than 160 other countries have participated in the Fulbright program.
About the Fulbright Program
The Fulbright Program is the U.S. government’s flagship international educational exchange program and is supported by the people of the United States and partner countries around the world. The Fulbright Program is funded through an annual appropriation made by the U.S. Congress to the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs. Participating governments and host institutions, corporations and foundations around the world also provide direct and indirect support to the program. In the United States, the Institute of International Education supports the implementation of the Fulbright U.S. Student and Scholar Programs on behalf of the U.S. Department of State, including conducting an annual competition for the scholarships.