Kabir Peay named director of Earth Systems Program
In the Earth Systems Program, undergraduate and coterminal master’s students learn about and independently investigate complex environmental problems caused by human activities in conjunction with natural changes in the Earth system.
Kabir Peay, associate professor of biology and of Earth system science, has been named faculty director of the Earth Systems Program starting March 1.
The Earth Systems Program, an interdisciplinary environmental science major for undergraduate and coterminal master’s students, is the largest major at the Stanford Doerr School of Sustainability. Students learn about and independently investigate complex environmental problems caused by human activities in conjunction with natural changes in the Earth system.
“The Earth Systems Program is essential to the mission of SDSS – we are training the next generation of scientific, social, and economic leaders in the interdisciplinary systems thinking necessary to realize a sustainable future,” Peay said.
Peay is taking over leadership of the program from Oceans and Earth System Science Professor Karen Casciotti, who supported the community through its virtual learning transition from Fall 2019 to 2023, in addition to its shift from Stanford Earth to the Doerr School of Sustainability. Her work to foster community, including through the launch of an Earth Systems Action Plan for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion and Anti-Racism, sets a foundation for Peay to cultivate the Earth Systems community based on the ideals of the school at large.
Since 2014, Peay has been advising students in the Earth Systems program. He has taught several courses that are part of academic tracks within Earth Systems, including BIO 81: Introduction to Ecology and BIO 115: The Hidden Kingdom - Evolution, Ecology, and Diversity of Fungi.
"Kabir has contributed to the Earth Systems Program for years through his outstanding teaching and mentorship of our students,” said Richard Nevle, deputy director of the Earth Systems Program. “I’m delighted to have a chance to work with him, both to build on Karen's many contributions as director and pursue new pathways for Earth Systems to train the next generation of social-environmental change-makers."
As one of his first steps as faculty director, Peay hopes to engage with students, staff, faculty, and alumni for input on the vision for the program and how to grow its role within SDSS moving forward.
“I couldn’t be more excited about stepping into this role and working with the amazing staff, faculty, and students that have made this one of the most successful academic programs at Stanford,” Peay said.
Peay is also a senior fellow with the Woods Institute for the Environment and a member of Bio-X.