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The problems facing our environment are becoming increasingly complex and they are outpacing efforts to address them. This includes challenges ranging from climate change, to the global extinction crisis, to issues associated with environmental justice. We must act both smarter and faster to head off severe consequences for people and the planet. Data Science approaches offer a transformative opportunity to increase both the rate and impact of environmental problem-solving.

Launched in 2022, the Eric and Wendy Schmidt Center for Data Science and Environment (DSE) at Berkeley is a partnership between UC Berkeley's Department of Environmental Science, Policy, and Management and the College of Computing, Data Science, and Society, with the financial support of Eric and Wendy Schmidt, working to take on these challenges.

The Center aims to contribute to the global community who are similarly working to take on these challenges in four key areas:

  • Generating ground-breaking computational/data science discoveries motivated by pressing environmental questions;
  • Producing scalable solutions to critical threats facing the environment, powered by open-source tools;
  • Deploying these solutions widely, taking advantage of modern cloud infrastructure and open data/open software, and maintaining a design philosophy of vendor neutrality to ensure that community needs are prioritized;
  • Creating an enhanced pipeline of young environmental leaders connected to local communities and organizations to meet their needs and translate our research findings and technological developments into practical impacts.

The success of this effort relies on people, our ability to build upon the success of others, and to make new contributions that allow others to build on what we create. 

The Schmidt Center for DSE is committed to diversity, equity, inclusion, and belonging. We aim to foster an environment that is safe and open to all work together with RCNR, CDSS, and Campus to continually learn and grow in our ability to do so. 

Our current focal areas include:

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Working to make the measurement of biodiversity more accessible, standardized, and transparent

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Climate Resilience

Developing tools and practices that address real problems and provide data driven solutions to the ongoing and growing challenges that climate change poses for our communities