At a Glance – What we do

The Senator George J. Mitchell Center for Sustainability Solutions is a statewide program undertaking innovative stakeholder-engaged, solutions-driven, interdisciplinary research projects that are helping:

  • Maine BasketmakersTribal communities prepare for the arrival of the emerald ash borer, an invasive forest pest that poses serious threats to the centuries-old traditions and livelihoods of Wabanaki basketmakers;
  • Wild blueberry growers use native bees to create more resilient strategies for ensuring the pollination of their crops;
  • State legislators, municipal officials, and the waste management industry find better approaches to solid waste management that reduce the rate of landfill expansion and lower long-term costs to towns and taxpayers;
  • Town managers, real estate developers, and conservation groups balance economic development and wetland protection in municipal planning processes;
  • State agencies, clam fishermen, and towns develop better ways to clean up and reopen clam flats closed due to coastal water quality impairment.

At a time when recognition is increasing that colleges and universities must become more responsive to society’s needs, the Mitchell Center is leading the way. The Center’s unique approach builds on five key principles of sustainability science: focus on solutions; embrace interdisciplinary collaborations; build partnerships; innovate and persevere; and, gather and share lessons learned.

“Colleges and universities can offer tremendous value to society by listening to all sides without taking sides, and by creating neutral ground for crafting innovative solutions to a wide range of sustainability challenges.” —David Hart, Director, The Mitchell Center

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