From Ideas to Impact

The power of the Energy and Environment Initiative stems from engaging the market strategically and globally. At Rice, that demands setting the bar with a series of grand challenges and pursuing those challenges with transformative solutions from the basic sciences, engineering, public policy, the social sciences and the humanities.

To meet these challenges, the Energy and Environment Initiative is engages expertise from multiple research disciplines, along with industry leaders and government agencies, NGOs and the public to develop safer, more affordable and environmentally sustainable carbon-based fuels.

We are committed to:

  • Sustainable drilling by utilizing advanced materials and systems designs.
  • Maximizing the impact of high-performance computing to generate real-time information designed to de-risk investment, enhance productivity and ensure long-term sustainability.
  • Simulating, visualizing and modeling reservoirs to better predict their production potential and to realize that potential.
  • Reducing the environmental footprint associated with energy production and consumption.
  • Ensuring that Gulf Coast communities and oil operations, on and off-shore, are resilient in extreme weather.
  • Maximizing the impact of putting nanotechnology and biotechnology for the treatment of water in fracking and unconventional exploration.
  • Educating the next generation of energy leaders to ensure they have a holistic understanding of the technological, economics, policy and human dimensions of energy.

Why Rice?

Rice consistently ranks among the top 20 universities in the United States. Rice ranks in the top five for scientific impact and has a top five nanotechnology program. The Baker Institute's Center for Energy Studies is ranked in the top two globally for energy think tanks. The Jones Graduate School of Business offers a wide array of programs and degrees that serve traditional MBA students and mid-career and executive professionals, placing a strong emphasis on the vital role of entrepreneurship in developing new technologies that address the energy challenge.

Our curriculum, faculty and students are multi-disciplined and globally focused. More than half of Rice students have science, engineering, and business majors, and one in four will earn a degree in more than one major. The Cultures of Energy Initiative at Rice University has received significant funding to engage undergraduates, graduate students, faculty members, and industry experts in energy and environmental studies both in the U.S. and abroad. From research to policy to the human dimensions of energy issues – Rice embraces the big picture.

Rice has a long history of welcoming external partners, including virtually all the major international energy companies, multiple nonprofits, think tanks and government agencies. These partners ensure Rice’s drive to develop transformative research into marketplace impact.

The trajectory we envision for Rice Energy and Environment – ideas to impact –  is a central component of the Rice tradition. Rice founded the first research institute in nanotechnology; today, innovations in nanotechnology are fueling a technological revolution, from energy to medicine and beyond. Our high-performance computing institute is a recognized global leader, with a specific focus on the intersection of energy and “big data.”  Rice’s multi-disciplined collaborations and our constant drive to apply "unconventional wisdom", make it a centerpiece to take on the world’s energy and environmental challenges in Houston, the energy capital of the world.