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December 16, 2020

WPI awarded $3M for graduate data program

Photo | Grant Welker Worcester Polytechnic Institute

Worcester Polytechnic Institute has won a $3-million grant from the National Science Foundation to start a graduate program aimed at helping to create more environmentally sustainable communities.

The grant, which the school announced Wednesday, will help graduates advance so-called circular economies, in which materials' use are maximized through recycling, improvised manufacturing efficiency, and reduction of harmful waste. WPI said it plans to help train the next generation of scientists to use a mix of data analytics, math and computing power to solve such environmental challenges.

The funding is due to last five years and will involve an interdisciplinary array of studies, including data sciences, chemical sciences and social sciences. WPI expects the program, called CEDAR — or Circular Economy and Data Analytics Engineering Research for Sustainability — to train a total of 90 master's and 30 PhD students, and support 30 PhD-level trainees.

WPI said students will complete a project focused on a particular aspect of data-driven sciences or engineering designed to reach sustainability objectives. Projects will examine technical, social, and organizational aspects of their innovations.

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