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Northeastern University Interdisciplinary Science & Engineering Complex

805 Columbus Avenue

Room 102

Boston, MA 02120

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Coastal cities face unique challenges from the effects of a warming planet. What issues are most likely to impact Boston, and how can our city best prepare itself? In this panel discussion hosted by the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering at Northeastern University, we bring together premier experts from industry and academia to examine our vulnerabilities to climate change and how civil and environmental engineers can help build a more sustainable, resilient Boston.

Moderator: Dr. Matthew Eckelman, Associate Professor, Northeastern University
Panelists: Dr. Auroop Ganguly (Professor, Northeastern University), Dr. Jim Chen (Professor, Northeastern University), Dr. Paul Kirshen (Professor UMass Boston), and Dr. Indrani Ghosh (Technical Leader, Kleinfelder)



About the Panelists

Dr. Matthew J Eckelman is an Associate Professor and Associate Chair For Research at the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering at Northeastern University. He is an affiliated Faculty member with the Departments of Chemical Engineering and Marine and Environmental Sciences, and the School of Public Policy and Urban Affairs. He received his Ph.D. in Environmental Engineering from Yale University in 2009. His research interests include energy efficiency and emissions modeling, life cycle assessment, material and energy use in urban buildings and infrastructure, nanotechnology, and environmental engineering and health.

Dr. Paul Kirshen is a Professor of Climate Adaptation at the School for the Environment at the University of Massachusetts, Boston. He is an expert in water resources, coastal zone management and climate variability and change. Kirshen has worked on several projects for the EPA, US NOAA, US Army Corp of Engineers and the Union of Concerned Scientists studying the impact of climate change on the greater Boston area. He is the Director of the UMass Boston Sustainable Solutions Lab, which assesses the impact of climate change on underserved populations and investigates solutions to these complex issues. He received his Ph.D. in Civil Engineering from Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 1975.

Dr. Indrani Ghosh is the Technical Leader for climate change science at Kleinfelder. She models the impacts of climate change on future flooding and heat to identify risks and evaluate adaptation strategies at the local scale. Dr. Ghosh has published several papers which describe how cities and municipalities can translate the uncertainty of climate change into engineering design criteria. She has worked on several projects predicting flooding impacts in the greater Boston area, including climate change vulnerability assessment and adaptation plans, sea level rise modeling for coastal towns, and the Disaster and Infrastructure Resiliency Plan for Boston’s Logan International Airport. She was the recipient of the 2014 Clemens Herschel Award from The Boston Society of Civil Engineers (BSCES) and the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) Civil Engineering from Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 1975.

Dr. Qin Jim Chen is an expert in coastal engineering and science, particularly in the development of state-of-the-art numerical models to address coastal resiliency and sustainability. He leads the Coastal Hydrodynamics Lab out of the Nahant Marine Science Center at Northeastern University, where he is a Professor of Civil and Environmental Engineering, interdisciplinary with the Department of Marine and Environmental Sciences. Through grants from the National Science Foundation, US Geological Survey, US Army Corp of Engineers and the Department of Treasury, Chen conducts research into the effects of extreme weather and climate change on coastal regions. Chen received his Ph.D. in Civil Engineering from Old Dominion University, in collaboration with Danish Hydraulic Institute.

Auroop R. Ganguly, Ph.D., is a hydrologist and a civil engineer, and currently a Professor of Civil and Environmental Engineering at Northeastern University in Boston, MA, USA, where he is the Director of the Sustainability and Data Sciences Laboratory (SDS Lab). He is also Professor by courtesy of multiple NU departments and colleges, specifically, Khoury College of Computer and Information Sciences, Marine and Environmental Sciences, Political Science, and Public Policy and Urban Affairs, as well as a Visiting International Professor of Computer Science and Environmental Science at the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Kharagpur. He is a member of the United Nations Environmental Program review panel and the lead author of the Artificial Intelligence (AI) section of the Sustained National Climate Assessment of the United States. He is the Chief Specialty Editor for water and built environment of the upcoming Frontiers in Water journal and serves on the editorial board of the journal PLOS ONE and Scientific Reports published by Nature, as well as the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) Journal of Computing in Civil Engineering. Ganguly received his Ph.D. in Civil & Environmental Engineering from MIT in 2002.

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Northeastern University Interdisciplinary Science & Engineering Complex

805 Columbus Avenue

Room 102

Boston, MA 02120

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