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Critical New Hire: Institute on the Environment

Given the situation at the university, I think the more new people we can get to come in from the outside and shake things up the better. Assuming, of course, that they have the chops to do this.

Jon Foley has an outstanding publication record and real recognition from the scientific community. He has published about a hundred papers, with about forty citations per paper. HIs "h" value is about thirty which means that he has about thirty papers that have been cited more than thirty times. For more about h values and those of other famous recent hires please see the post: "What the h?"

Jonathan Foley's website at the University of Wisconsin is most impressive as is his cv. Welcome, Jon.

The Daily reports:

jonathan Foley, a University of Wisconsin professor, has been named head of the University's Institute on the Environment.

Foley, who headed Wisconsin's Center for Sustainability and the Global Environment, will take over his post at the University on August 25.

In a statement, University Provost Thomas Sullivan said, "Our expectations for both our institute and its director are extremely high as we are committed to seeing that the institute flourishes as one of the very best in the world."

The Institute is currently headed by Interim Director Deborah Swackhamer. On July 8, the Institute released a study on preserving Minnesota's natural resources


If the institute is going to flourish as "one of the very best in the world" then it is going to need a lot of support. We have some real environmental problems that are going to be expensive to fix. [Hint: steam generation plant.] I think that our limited resources would be better spent for environmental remediation purposes than for your "ambitious aspiration to be one of the three best public research universities in the world [sic]."

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