Transportation, logistics and supply-chain management represents a field of inquiry with tremendous impact on businesses and society, coupled with remarkable job opportunities.
Research and education related to that field, however, call for a trans-disciplinary approach which integrates both engineering and managerial skills. While this is widely recognized as a powerful blend and several of our AAU peers already have centers and institutes that unite transportation and logistics faculty groups, UB currently lacks such a structure. This proposal is therefore for establishing an Institute for Sustainable Transportation and Logistics (ISTL). ISTL will bring national and international visibility to UB, educate students in a holistic fashion, and serve as a mechanism for facilitating multi-disciplinary, center-type proposals. The institute while leveraging existing expertise at UB will achieve critical mass through the hiring of 8 additional faculty members equally split between the School of Engineering and Applied Sciences (SEAS) and the School of Management (SOM); requested E-funds will be matched 1:1 jointly by SEAS and SOM. ISTL will also leverage staff expertise from MCEER to provide needed administrative support. A guiding principle for ISTL will be to partner with governmental and industry partners, who can then support the institute through students’ scholarship, annual membership fees, and eventually endowed professorships and chairs. Partnerships will also allow ISTL faculty and students to research problems of direct relevance to society, while providing numerous opportunities for hands-on experiences. From an educational standpoint, ISTL will host a signature Master’s program, which will offer a joint degree between SEAS and SOM, as well as a certificate, in transportation, logistics and supply-chain management. The institute will also partner with international academic institutions including Tongji (China), McMaster (Canada), TU-Darmstadt (Germany), Izmir (Turkey), and Polytechnic University of Turin (Italy).