About Engineers for a Sustainable World
Engineers for a Sustainable World (ESW) is a global 501c3 nonprofit network of over 1,750 engineers and problem solvers working to make their communities a better place.
Founded in 2002, Engineers for a Sustainable World (ESW) is an international network of over 1,750 members and more than 50 collegiate chapters working to build a more sustainable world through technical hands-on projects. Since its founding, ESW has supported over 300 chapter-led projects in 12 countries and 23 states and Canadian provinces. Past projects have included a self contained living unit and design studio for mobile deployment in disaster relief areas, a prototype of an affordable solar-powered lamp for citizens of Haiti, and a hydroponic system for a local food pantry to produce low cost food for the community.
Our current signature programs are Build Day, CommUnity, and Project Grants. Build Day unites neighborhoods for a day of action to literally build more sustainable communities. Students can enroll in CommUnity for a 6-month project-based curriculum in community-based work. We also distribute small project grants to our chapters to support ongoing initiatives.
Do I have to be an engineer to join?
Our mission is to empower engineers to tackle sustainability challenges, though we also believe that you do not have to be an engineer to engineer change. We welcome students and professionals of all backgrounds to join us in building a more sustainable world.
A sustainable world supported by a network of passionate engineers.
To empower engineers to tackle sustainability challenges.
Design and implement hands-on sustainability projects across the globe.
Educate students and practicing engineers on sustainability best practices.
Unite people who are passionate about sustainability to create a global network.
Social, environmental, and economic sustainability are all necessary
A sustainable world has to have a robust ecosystem, a lasting and equitable society, and a stable economy. Though our work often focuses on addressing environmental issues, we recognize these other elements as equally important.
Anyone can join and contribute meaningfully
We recognize the importance of a diversity of skills, backgrounds, and perspectives in addressing complex issues, and actively encourage participation.
We collaborate rather than compete
While competition is an important element of a sustainable economy, we’re concerned with solving problems, not with making a profit. We know the challenges we face are beyond the scope of engineers alone to address, and so we seek to share our knowledge and collaborate with others, in order to more effectively develop lasting solutions that work for everyone involved.
Innovation doesn’t always mean new technologies
Appropriate solutions don’t always require innovation, but when they do, that can include both technical innovation and innovative implementation of traditional methods and technologies. We build off of what others have done to avoid reinventing the wheel.
Implementation and education are equally important for long-term change
Education is important in understanding environmental issues and training future engineers, but implementation of appropriate solutions is also required to ensure a visible, lasting impact.
It's worth doing the right thing. It’s also worth doing things right.
We are ethical and diligent in our work. We develop data-driven solutions to real problems and invest the time and effort to provide quality results, and then we learn from both failures and successes to drive future improvements.
We are pragmatic optimists
Pragmatism means seeing the world as it is - in context, with complexity, and often not in very good shape. Optimism is a belief that that things can improve. Both are essential for finding effective steps forward.
Suits and stiffness are not requirements for professionalism
Sometimes we need to laugh. Sometimes short sleeves and sneakers make more sense than suits (say, when building gardens). Our ability to be professionals while making a better world isn’t compromised by including students or having fun.