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College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences


NSF-sponsored Convergence Accelerator workshop: Sustainable Systems Enabling Food Security in Extreme Environments and Food Deserts

On behalf of the organizing committee, workshop facilitators and the NSF Convergence Accelerator team, it is our pleasure to invite you to the NSF-sponsored Convergence Accelerator workshop “Sustainable Systems Enabling Food Security in Extreme Environments and Food Deserts employing a Convergence of Food, Energy, Water and Systems”. Some of the workshop topics include Food Security, Sustainable Systems and Agriculture; Renewable Energy and Sustainable Water Resources; Sustainable, Integrated and Smart Systems; and Social Engagement, Policy, and Education. The overall workshop objective is accelerated convergence of sustainable food systems and food security through a facilitated convening of vested stakeholders from academia, industry, government agencies, NGOs, foundations and others, enabling accelerated innovation. The workshop will be virtual with parallel and converging breakout sessions, and is scheduled for May 19-21, 2021. The results of this NSF-sponsored Convergence Accelerator workshop will inform future investments from the National Science Foundation for sustainable food systems and food security research and innovation at the intersection of food, energy, water and systems.

Please register here or visit the workshop’s website. More information about the NSF Convergence Accelerator program can be found here. We look forward to your participation! Please forward this e-mail to other vested stakeholders like yourself!

Organizing Committee:

  • Deidra R. Hodges, Associate Professor, Solar Energy and Energy Sustainability, University of Texas at El Paso (UTEP)
  • Mark A. Engle, Professor, Geochemistry and Hydrogeology, UTEP
  • Gregory S. Schober, Assistant Professor, Health Policy, Political and Civil Engagement, UTEP
  • Sreenath Chalil Madathil, Assistant Professor, Resilient Power Network Design and Smart and Sustainable Systems, UTEP
  • Malynda A. Cappelle, Associate Director, Center for Inland Desalination Systems; Water treatment technology to address water and energy security, UTEP
  • Ximing Cal, Colonel Harry F. and Frankie M. Lovell Endowed Professor, Ven Te Chow Faculty Scholar in Water Resources and Willett Faculty Scholar, Energy-Water-Environment Sustainability, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
  • Brendan O’Connor, Associate Professor, Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering, Organic Semiconductors for Advanced Sensing, Energy Harvesting, and Agriculture, North Carolina State University
  • Victoria Finkenstadt, National Program Leader, Division of Agricultural Systems, Institute for Food Production and Sustainability, National Institute of Food and Agriculture, U.S. Department of Agriculture
  • Janie McClurkin Moore, Assistant Professor, Biological & Agricultural Engineering, Texas A&M

 Workshop Facilitators:

  • Molly Mayo, Senior Partner, Meridian Institute
  • Jeana Holer, Senior Project Coordinator, Meridian Institute
  • Annika Freudenberger, Project Consultant
  • Seth Blum, Project Associate II and Ruckelshaus Fellow, Meridian Institute

NSF Convergence Accelerator Program Directors:

  • Christopher Sandford, Program Director, Convergence Accelerator, NSF
  • Mike Pozmantier, Program Director, Convergence Accelerator, NSF
  • Barbara Ransom, Program Director, GEO, IUCRC, NSF
  • Laura Lautz, Program Director, EAR, HS SRS RNs, NSF