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We are a University-wide Committee on Funding for Energy Research and Education (CFERE) charged with exploring and reporting on the issues raised by Stanford’s accepting funding from fossil fuel companies. In particular, the committee has been asked to:

  • Consider methods of defining a fossil fuel company.
  • Itemize, with minimal analysis and evaluation, the institutional benefits, concerns, risks, and values associated with funding from energy companies.
  • Inventory existing Stanford engagements with energy companies.
  • Review these engagements, focusing on the type of engagement, the source of funds, and the explicit and implicit terms and conditions.
  • Consider approaches being taken at peer institutions.
  • Analyze the pros and cons of Stanford’s current policies and practices and of possible changes, including a categorical ban on certain funding arrangements; a case-by-case review, based on principles that respond to the benefits, concerns and risks; or heightened awareness of issues within our current policies and processes.
  • Consider approaches to better understand diverse viewpoints and concerns and engage the Stanford community, especially students, in thoughtful discourse to inform this discussion. The committee is particularly encouraged to consider a deliberative polling process and to suggest proposals for deliberation.

In addition to studying the views on these issues that Dean Arun Majumdar of the Stanford Doerr School of Sustainability (SDSS) received from many members of the Stanford community, the Committee is undertaking an independent inquiry to ensure that we hear all voices.

We welcome your views in either of two ways.

You are invited to post comments on this website. (We are asking for email addresses in order to know whether the comments come from Stanford or externally, but we will keep your identity confidential within the committee.) Alternatively, if you would like to meet in a small group with a representative of the committee please email by April 14.


Paul Brest, Co-chair (Law)
Debra Satz, Co-chair (Philosophy and H&S Dean)
Michelle Anderson (Law and SDSS)
Ines Azevedo (SDSS)
Jonathan Levin (GSB Dean)
Jenny Martinez (Law Dean)
Adam Nayak (SDSS student)
Narasimha Rao (Yale School of the Environment; EIPER PhD)
Leif Wenar (Philosophy)