The Institute for Sustainable Energy focuses on four research areas:

Sustainable Cities

As the world’s population continues to urbanize, new methods of urban planning, infrastructure development and service delivery, mobility, and built environment energy use are essential. In collaboration with BU’s Initiative on Cities and the Center for Information & System Engineering’s Smart Cities project, we lead work in this area.


Energy Systems of the Future

The electric power industries of the world are shifting from centralized, fossil-based production to more distributed and entirely carbon-free networks. Along with colleagues in the Questrom School of Business, the College of Engineering, and the Frederick S. Pardee Center for the Study of the Longer-Range Future and the Frederick S. Pardee School of Global Studies, the Institute plays a global leadership role in this area.


New Mobility

As the electric grid becomes steadily cleaner, electrification of transportation can play a central role in reducing emissions of heat-trapping gases. BU ISE in collaboration with Columbia University and Global Energy Interconnection Development and Cooperation Organization (GEIDCO) are exploring electric vehicle (EV) adoption and charging infrastructure across cities around the world.


Sustainable Water Management

The BU ISE team’s research focuses on approaches to overcome the environmental, legal, financial, and demographic barriers to sustainable water management, and to maintain affordability of water. We have worked in Texas and identified opportunities for utilities to integrate One Water strategies into urban water management, including considering demand management and incorporating new approaches to water rate-making to promote affordability and water conservation while managing utility revenue.