Noelle Eckley Selin, associate professor with a joint appointment in the MIT Institute for Data, Systems, and Society (IDSS) and the Department of Earth, Atmospheric and Planetary Sciences (EAPS), is the new director for the Technology and Policy Program (TPP) at MIT.
TPP is a two-year, interdisciplinary master of science program that combines science and engineering with social sciences, to educate students whose research addresses important technological issues confronting society. Over more than 40 years, TPP’s more than 1,200 alumni have gone on to work in industry and government as well as academia.
Selin’s own research links science and policy, particularly on the topic of atmospheric pollutants. Her interdisciplinary research aims to inform decisionmaking on air pollution, climate change, and hazardous substances—a major focus being mercury pollution, where she has engaged with both domestic and international policymakers. In addition to her work modeling the transport and fate of pollutants, she has published articles and book chapters on the interactions between science and policy in international environmental negotiations, in particular focusing on global efforts to regulate hazardous substances.
“Noelle is an excellent educator and teacher, and has substantially contributed to the curriculum in IDSS and TPP,” said IDSS Director Munther Dahleh, a professor in IDSS and MIT’s Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science. While serving as associate director of TPP, Selin managed the admission process and led curricular development efforts. In 2018, she shared the Joseph A. Martore ’75 Award for Exceptional Contributions to Education in IDSS for her contributions to the core TPP course “Science, Technology, and Public Policy.” She also received TPP’s Faculty Appreciation Award in 2013.
Selin came to MIT in 2007 as a postdoctoral researcher at the Center for Global Change Science, later joining the Engineering Systems Division as an assistant professor in 2010 with a joint appointment in EAPS. She joined IDSS as a core faculty member when it was launched in 2015 and was promoted to associate professor with tenure in July 2017.
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