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Benchmarking the Integration of Sustainability into Engineering Curricula at Us Institutions of Higher Education

Robert W. Peters, University of Alabama at Birmingham, Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, 1075 13th Street South, Birmingham, AL 35294-4440, M. P. Sharma, Chemical and Petroleum Engineering, University of Wyoming, Laramie, WY 82071, and Jejal Reddy Bathi, Department of Civil, Construction, and Environmental Engineering (C2E2), University of Alabama at Birmingham, 1075 13th Street South, Birmingham, AL 35294-4440.

Abstract: Sustainability is a multi-disciplinary and evolving concept and practice. It has been defined in a variety of ways in the literature. One of the widely accepted (but by no means completely satisfactory to cover all dimensions of the concept) is the so-called Bruntland commission's definition which defines it “as meeting the needs of the present without compromising the ability of the future generations to meet their own needs.” The concept and practice of sustainability has become very important in engineering profession. We conducted a project to determine and unravel the current state of integration of sustainability in engineering education at the colleges and universities across the nation. We focused on identifying several key activities and indicators to conduct the study. This paper will discuss and present the results of this phase of the project.