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Grand Challenges

Water scarcity. Energy dependence. Climate change. Sustainable and habitable cities. These complex and challenging environmental problems are broadly understood to be among the most pressing issues of the 21st century.

The Grand Challenges Program is an ambitious and broadly inclusive initiative at Princeton University designed to tackle these complex and vexing global environmental problems by fully integrating the research and teaching missions of the University. The Program engages faculty from disparate disciplines with postdoctoral fellows and graduate and undergraduate students to examine the scientific, technical, public-policy and human dimensions of climate and energy, water, global health, sustainable development and the urban environment.

Urban Challenge PEI's newest Grand Challenge program combines the study of the natural and built environments to address the interrelated environmental and social issues that face the world's rapidly expanding urban areas in a world of increasing environmental volatility.
Water and the Environment Challenge Recognizes the critical role that water plays in virtually all aspects of the environmental sciences as well as the global importance of water as a resource.
Climate and Energy Challenge Confronts climate change, the management of fossil-fuel carbon, the expansion of non-fossil energy sources, and other environmental impacts of the energy system.
Health Challenge Focused on developing methods to prevent and treat HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis, malaria and other infectious diseases around the globe.
Development Challenge Tackled the difficult task of eliminating poverty in Africa while conserving the continent’s biodiversity and vast store of natural resources.