Warren Distinguished Lecture Series Home

The Warren Distinguished Lecture Series is made possible by a generous, renewing gift by Alice Warren Gaarden in 1961. Since 1989, we have been bringing in accomplished researchers and speakers from around the world to share their work with students, faculty, and friends of CEGE. Please join us for these lectures!

Upcoming Warren Lectures

Mar 17    Birthe Veno Kjellerup, University of Maryland at College Park, "Biofilm Based Bioremediation of Persistent Organic Pollutants in Sediment and Stormwater"
Mar 24    Joel Ducoste, North Carolina State University, "The Formation of Elevated Temperatures in Municipal Solid Waste Landfills: These are not your typical Smokey hill tops or mountains!"
Mar 31    Claire White, Princeton University, "Net-Zero Cement Industry by 2050? Potential pathways forward"
April 7     Matthew J. Christensen, P.E., Vice President of the Surface Transportation Division, TKDA, "Replacing the Dale Street Bridge over I-94"
April 14   Wei Chen, Northwestern University
April 21   WenLu Zhu, University of Maryland
April 28   Sriniva Peeta, Georgia Tech

Formation of Elevated Temperatures in Municipal Solid Waste Landfills: These are not your typical Smokey hill tops or mountains!

a Warren Distinguished Lecture with Joel Ducoste, Civil, Construction, and Environmental Engineering, North Carolina State University

Research has been performed to help quantify the contributing factors that may lead to the formation of elevated temperature landfills (ETLFs). In this presentation, Ducoste discusses a numerical model that was used to predict heat generation, transport, and accumulation from biological and chemical reactions that occur in landfills.

Net-Zero Cement Industry by 2050? Potential Pathways Forward

a Warren Distinguished Lecture with Claire White, Princeton University

White provides an overview of the main approaches being pursued to reach a net zero cement industry by 2050 and will touch upon the various opportunities and challenges of these cement decarbonization approaches and technologies. White also presents her group’s recent research on alternative cements.

Replacing the Dale Street Bridge over I-94

a Warren Distinguished Lecture with Matthew J. Christensen, P.E., Vice President of the Surface Transportation Division, TKDA

Matthew Christensen will discuss the replacement of the Dale Street bridge over I-94 in St. Paul.

Past Warren Lectures

Biofilm Based Bioremediation of Persistent Organic Pollutants in Sediment and Stormwater

Birthe V. Kjellerup
Civil and Environmental Engineering & Bioengineering

University of Maryland 

Kjellerup’s research group has developed a novel approach to address PCB contamination. They co-localize PCB-degrading microbes onto surfaces of sorp­tive particles as biofilms, which  can be used as a delivery system. This approach can also be modified for treatment of contaminated stormwater and wastewater effluent prior to discharge. The effect of stormwater containing PCBs on sediment quality was evaluated for multiple locations in Baltimore Harbor. Sediment core samples were evaluated and compared to historical PCB concentrations. Kjellerup discusses these experiments along with current strategies for bioremediation of PCBs in stormwater retention cells and in sediment.

Plastics, Particles and Additives: An abrasive relationship

a Warren Distinguished Lecture with Mark R. Wiesner, Civil and Environmental Engineering, Duke University 

Wiesner reviews some recent work examining the release of nanomaterials from plastic composites, methods for evaluating plastic abrasion, calculations of non-nano additive release and possible consequences of plastic fragmentation for human health and the environment.

The Role of Turbulent Coherent Structures on the Evolving Seabed

Dr. Tian-Jian Hsu (Tom) is currently Professor of Civil and Environmental Engineering at the University of Delaware (UD) and the Director of the Center for Applied Coastal Research. In this presentation he discusses his research and preliminary results in the area of estuarine and coastal modeling.

Scholarly Publishing: Owning your work, sharing your work, and funder mandates

Allison Langham-Putrow and Nancy Sims from the University of Minnesota Library discuss issues of publishing research, including open access, funder mandates, reuse of material, and even ChatGPT.

Beyond Diversity: Reimagining the Work of Inclusive STEM

Mary A. Armstrong
Women's, Gender & Sexuality Studies
Lafayette College

ABSTRACT:  Everybody knows that diversity matters: it opens opportunities for all, improves teams and outcomes, and serves our highest values. And everybody knows that diversity (however it is defined) is difficult to achieve. If good intentions got good results, inclusivity issues would be a thing of the past. But instead, we often feel “stuck” and/or frustrated with well-meaning but less-than-effective efforts. In this talk, Mary Armstrong shares a three-part schema for thinking about diversity in STEM fields that offers a precise and sophisticated model of “inclusivity work.” This model clarifies differences across types of inclusivity approaches, analyzing the distinguishing characteristics of kinds of diversity work, and examining the strengths and weaknesses of each type. Armstrong concludes with a discussion of how we can recalibrate our thinking around STEM diversity so as to approach inclusivity in new and potentially more effective ways.

BIO:  Mary A. Armstrong is Charles A. Dana Professor of Women's, Gender & Sexuality Studies and English at Lafayette College, where she also chairs the Women's, Gender & Sexuality Studies Program. She earned her Ph.D. in English and Graduate Certification in Women's Studies from Duke University. Her research interests include equity and inclusivity in STEM fields, strategies for institutional transformation in higher education, and inclusive pedagogies. She has been PI on two National Science Foundation ADVANCE grants focused on strategies for institutional change to support underrepresented women in STEM, and she is Director of the Lafayette College Queer Archives Project.

Hybrid Physical and Digital Spaces for Enhanced Sustainability and Wellbeing

Hybrid Physical + Digital Spaces for Enhanced Sustainability and Wellbeing
a Warren Distinguished Lecture with
Sarah Billington
Civil and Environmental Engineering, Stanford University

"A scientific approach to designing buildings for wellbeing" 
see the full abstract

CO2 Removal from Air and Permanent Solid Storage

"Carbon Mineralization for CO2 Removal from Air and Permanent Solid Storage"
Peter Kelemen
Earth and Environmental Sciences, Columbia University

Smart Learning Pilot for Electric Vehicles

Future sustainable transportation systems will be automated, connected, and electrified. Transition to this new system requires completely new paradigms for smart infrastructure built upon data, control, and optimization. In this talk, Moura highlights SlrpEV (Smart LeaRning Research Pilot for Electric Vehicles) – a novel cyber-physical and human system research platform. SlrpEV seeks to resolve critical obstacles for public and workplace EV charging stations via novel pricing and power scheduling that learns and adapts to user preferences to minimize costs and emissions, and increase accessibility. Moura closes with broad perspectives on building a smart transportation and energy infrastructure that advances both sustainability and equity.

Career Panel at the Warren Lecture

Panelists talk about their experiences and advice for those beginning an engineer career

Forensic Engineering Lessons from the Linea 12 Mexico City and Fern Hollow Bridge Collapse

"Forensic Engineering Lessons from the Linea 12 Mexico City and Fern Hollow Bridge Collapse" 
A Warren Distinguished Lecture with Roberto Leon, Virginia Tech

Read the abstract and author's biography