02/27/07 -- Imperial College London - Jeremy
and Hannelore Grantham are donating £12 million to establish the Grantham
Institute for Climate Change based at Imperial College London, it is announced
today (Monday 26 February 2007).
This is the largest private funding given to climate change in the UK and will contribute to
the world's response to climate change by stimulating a research drive to develop
mitigation techniques, and by impacting directly on public and private policy.
The donation will create 10 new research posts and provide a dedicated space for the
Institute on campus, providing a focus for the scientists already working in this field at
The philanthropic donation is made by the Grantham Foundation for the Protection of the
Environment, established by the Granthams in 1997. The Foundation already supports a
number of international and American environmental charities, including The Nature
Conservancy, World Wildlife Fund, Oxfam and Environmental Defense.
The donation marks the beginning of a long-term commitment to climate change research,
say the Granthams. They hope their donation will motivate others in the financial and
business community to support research into the causes, consequences and mitigation of
Mr Grantham explained his decision to fund the Institute for Climate Change, saying:
"Climate change is the most important issue we face over the next fifty years. It is
imperative we find technologies that can be implemented in government policies
worldwide. I am confident that the Institute for Climate Change will be an idea leader and a
strong voice in championing that endeavor.
"Imperial is one of the most respected institutions in the world for scientific study. It not
only has world-class facilities and brilliant people but also an unmatched reputation for
innovation. It is a great privilege for my wife and me to be associated with such a wonderful
and dedicated organization."
Mr. Grantham will sit on the management board of the Grantham Institute for Climate
Change, along with Imperial's Rector Sir Richard Sykes who will chair the Board; Carter
Roberts, President and CEO of World Wildlife Fund; and Fred Krupp, President of
Environmental Defense. Imperial's Dr Tidu Maini, Pro Rector for Development and
Corporate Affairs, and Sir Peter Knight, Principal of the Faculty of Natural Sciences, will
also be on the management board.
The Grantham Institute for Climate Change will bring together under one banner, leading
researchers from Imperial working across the spectrum of climate change research.
Imperial's combination of research expertise in one place means that it is uniquely placed
to provide solutions to the healthcare, environmental and engineering problems caused by
climate change, and to influence the international policy makers charged with solving these
Current Imperial research in the field includes:
* public health specialists developing ways to forecast heatwave events and assessing
health risks associated with heat stress and climatic change
* engineers identifying feasible flight-planning strategies that would reduce the warming
effect of airplane condensation trails on the Earth's atmosphere
* atmospheric physicists measuring the effect that solar activity has on climate, leading to
more accurate climate change models
* civil engineers assessing and mitigating flood risks resulting from climate change -
leading to mass migrations in low-lying areas, e.g. Bangladesh; and having severe effects
on the global insurance industry through loss and damage claims from storms and floods
The donation will provide funding for new research and 10 additional posts initially,
including a Director and a senior post to specifically provide a two-way link between
researchers and policy makers, building on the existing work of Imperial's Centre for
Imperial has a strong track record of applying its science to inform policy, with its
researchers advising governments and directly informing policy on issues as diverse as
climate change and energy, public transport policy, the spread of infectious diseases
(including SARS and Avian Bird Flu), and agricultural research policy. Imperial's dedicated
Centre for Environmental Policy (CEP) provides policy analysis informed by science and
technology, and incorporates the £1.2 million Technology and Policy Assessment
Function of the UK Energy Research Centre. Imperial academics working in the CEP
provided reports on low carbon energy technologies to the Prime Minister's Office, as
inputs to G8 strategy development in 2002 and 2004, and the CEP's Professor Dennis
Anderson was Special Adviser to the Stern Review on the Economics of Climate Change
Sir Richard Sykes, Rector of Imperial College London said: "The Grantham Institute will
draw on, and expand, the existing expertise base of Imperial's world-leading academics
across the entire spectrum of climate change research. Mr Grantham's vision in making
such a generous contribution to the vital climate change work of Imperial, means that our
scientists will be able to continue and develop their work to understand and address the
greatest challenges facing mankind."
For more information on Imperial's Climate Change work and the Grantham Institute for
Climate Change go to www.imperial.ac.uk/climatechange
For further information please contact:
At Imperial College London:
Danielle Reeves, Press Officer
Tel: +44 (0)20 7594 2198
Mob: +44 (0)7803 886248
At Maitland (London) for Mr Grantham:
Tel +44 (0)20 7379 5151
Notes to editors:
About Imperial College London
Rated as the world's ninth best university in the 2006 Times Higher Education Supplement
University Rankings, Imperial College London is a science-based institution with a
reputation for excellence in teaching and research that attracts 11,500 students and 6,000
staff of the highest international quality.
Innovative research at the College explores the interface between science, medicine,
engineering and management and delivers practical solutions that improve quality of life
and the environment - underpinned by a dynamic enterprise culture.
With 62 Fellows of the Royal Society among our current academic staff and distinguished
past members of the College including 14 Nobel Laureates and two Fields Medalists,
Imperial's contribution to society has been immense. Inventions and innovations include
the discovery of penicillin, the development of holography and the foundations of fibre
optics. This commitment to the application of our research for the benefit of all continues
today with current focuses including interdisciplinary collaborations to tackle climate
change and mathematical modeling to predict and control the spread of infectious
The College's 100 years of living science will be celebrated throughout 2007 with a range
of events to mark the Centenary of the signing of Imperial's founding charter on 8 July
About the Granthams
Jeremy Grantham is the chairman and co-founder of GMO, a $140 billion global
investment management company based in Boston with offices in London, San Francisco,
Singapore, Sydney and Zurich.
Mr. Grantham earned his undergraduate degree from the University of Sheffield (U.K.) and
an M.B.A. from Harvard Business School.
He is a trustee of the Grantham Foundation for the Protection of the Environment and also
serves on the investment boards of several non-profit organizations in the United States.
Mrs. Grantham is a director of the Grantham Foundation for the Protection of the
Environment, RARE and the Textile Museum of Washington. A native of Bremen,
Germany, she earned her undergraduate and masters degrees from Brandeis University in