Cliff I. Davidson
Thomas C. and Colleen L. Wilmot Professor
Cliff Davidson is the Thomas and Colleen Wilmot Professor at Syracuse University in Syracuse, NY. He currently holds appointments in the Civil and Environmental Engineering Department and at the Syracuse Center of Excellence in Environmental and Energy Systems. He received his B.S. in Electrical Engineering from Carnegie Mellon University, and his M.S. and Ph.D. degrees in Environmental Engineering Science from California Institute of Technology. Following his PhD, he joined the Carnegie Mellon faculty in the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering and the Department of Engineering and Public Policy where he served for 33 years. He joined Syracuse University in 2010. Davidson has written and edited a number of books, has over 100 articles in refereed journals, and was President of the American Association for Aerosol Research during 1999-2000. He is the Founding Director of the Center for Sustainable Engineering, a partnership among Carnegie Mellon, University of Texas at Austin, Arizona State University, Georgia Institute of Technology, and Syracuse University.
Research InterestsDavidson’s research includes several topics. His long-term interest has involved environmental transport and fate of atmospheric aerosols, especially trace metals, and he is a co-author of chapters in the 1977 and 2006 Airborne Lead Criteria Documents of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. He has led field campaigns in the Himalaya Mountains of Nepal, the Greenland Ice Sheet, and U.S. National Parks, as well as in rural and urban areas within the U.S. He has worked on problems of indoor air quality in homes. He has also worked on emission inventories, especially lead from mobile and stationary sources and ammonia from agriculture and livestock. Since the 1990s, he has studied the role of engineers in sustainable development as well as public perception of technology and public understanding of the environmental impact of daily activities. He is currently researching urban redevelopment for sustainability, considering the role of green infrastructure in helping to solve air and water management problems.
Teaching InterestsDavidson has taught undergraduate courses at the freshman level (Introduction to Civil & Environmental Engineering at CMU), sophomore level (Sustainability in Civil & Environmental Systems at SU), junior level (Fluid Mechanics; Analysis, Synthesis & Evaluation; Engineering & Public Policy Projects, all at CMU), and senior level (Air Quality Engineering at CMU). He has also taught graduate level courses (Atmospheric Aerosols; Introduction to Sustainable Engineering; Industrial Ecology and Green Design, all at CMU, plus Introduction to Sustainable Engineering at SU). He organized a seminar program Careers in Academia which included panel discussions on the responsibilities of faculty members and ran for 23 years at CMU. He also co-organized professional development workshops for graduate students and young faculty to improve their skills at teaching and mentoring for 6 years at CMU, and organized professional development workshops for faculty members around the country on developing sustainability content for their engineering courses.
Recent PublicationsFerrer-Balas, D., J. Adachi, S. Banas, C.I. Davidson, A. Hoshikoshi, A. Mishra, Y. Motodoa, M. Onga, and M. Ostwald, “Transforming Universities for Sustainability: Seven Case Studies from Around the World,” International Journal of Sustainability in Higher Education, Vol. 9, pages 295-316, 2008 (best paper award).
Chu, Nanjun., Joseph B. Kadane, and Cliff I. Davidson, “Identifying Likely PM2.5 Sources on Days of Elevated Concentration: A Simple Statistical Approach,” Environmental Science and Technology, Vol. 43, pages 2407-2411, 2009.
Davidson, C.I., C.T. Hendrickson, H.S. Matthews, M.W. Bridges, D.T. Allen, C.F. Murphy, B.R. Allenby, J.C. Crittenden, and S. Austin, “Preparing Future Engineers for the Challenges of the 21st Century: Sustainable Engineering,” J. Cleaner Production, 2009, doi:10.1016/j.jclepro.2009.12.021.
Attari, Shahzeen Z., Michael L. DeKay, Cliff I. Davidson, and Wändi Bruine de Bruin, “Public Perceptions of Energy Consumption,” Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, Vol. 107, pages 16054-16059, 2010.
Miller, Jeffrey F., Cliff I. Davidson, Deborah A. Lange, and Meredith L. Meyer Grelli, “Brownfields and Environmental Justice: Income, Education, and Race,” Environmental Justice, Vol. 4, pages 121-124, 2011. doi:10.1089/env.2010.0002.