April 7, 2021

E4C’s Research Fellowship Program Doubles with Autodesk Foundation Support

Note: We will announce the newest cohort of Research Fellows and host a virtual event, Fostering Ecosystems for Impact, May 3rd at this year’s UN Forum on Science Technology and Innovation for the Sustainable Development Goals (STI Forum). Please join us. 

Engineering for Change’s Research Fellowship has evolved this year through a unique collaboration with Autodesk Foundation. As a result, fellows will engage in the established program of study, research into technologies and services that improve lives in underserved communities, networking and publication. And, in a first for the program, they will train in the use of Autodesk’s design tools.

See the 2020 Research Report of papers by E4C’s Fellows and private- and public-sector collaborators.

“Autodesk Foundation’s substantial investment in this signature ASME philanthropic initiative is a powerful endorsement of our mission to advance engineering for the benefit of humanity,” says Kathleen Lobb, managing director of philanthropy at the American Society of Mechanical Engineers, and executive director of the ASME Foundation. ASME is E4C’s parent organization.

“E4C Fellowships are a mainstay of our Engineering Global Development portfolio, which is just one of the ways ASME and the ASME Foundation inspire, engage, and empower next generation engineers,” Ms. Lobb says.

See the Solutions Library, a database of essential technologies built by Research Fellows.

This year’s cohort will also be the largest to date at 50 fellows, twice the number of previous years.

Fellows advance their career path through 400 hours of research, 30 hours of networking online with their peers and expert advisors, and 30 hours of learning modules designed to enhance their knowledge in the sector. In addition, the Autodesk Foundation will provide software training to the Fellows as needed for their research collaborations, on Autodesk tools including AutoCAD, BIM 360, Dynamo, Revit, Inventor, and Fusion 360. Fellows publish the results of their technical research, expert interviews, and share their insights on E4C’s online platform, reaching a global community of more than one million innovators and influencers in sustainable development.

Browse the papers that emerged from research collaborations in 2019 and 2020.

Autodesk Foundation is the philanthropic arm of Autodesk, Inc., the global developer of design software for the architecture, engineering, construction, media and entertainment, and manufacturing industries. Autodesk Foundation draws on its other resources to help create a more sustainable and equitable future. The arrangement with E4C extends the reach of Autodesk Foundation’s Impact Internship program, which connects innovators and entrepreneurs in the Autodesk Foundation portfolio with emerging engineers.

This combined internship initiative gives emerging engineers the opportunity to apply their technical expertise to unwind some of the world’s most tangled social and environmental issues, while also developing leadership skills and advancing career readiness.

This year, E4C has received nearly 650 applications from interested candidates in 80 countries –an increase of 50 percent compared with the previous year.

E4C’s Fellows will be matched with Autodesk Foundation portfolio organizations on projects that address the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals. Projects include proving the affordability of greenhouses for small shareholder farmers in India, product design of electric motorbikes, and developing a holistic design approach for sustainable construction projects.

Previous years’ cohorts of fellows have struggled to contain their enthusiasm.

“We are proud to collaborate with ASME andE4C on Autodesk Foundation’s Impact Internship Program this year. With ASME andE4C’s expertise and network, we’re able to connect our portfolio with a global cohort of emerging engineers to solve some of the world’s most pressing social and environmental problems,” said Christine Stoner, head of engagement at Autodesk Foundation.

Since 2016, the E4C Research Fellowship has provided opportunities for 86 fellows from 23 countries to create social impact. The highly competitive program attracts hundreds of applicants each year. More than half of all E4C Fellows are women, addressing the critical need to expand diversity in engineering for sustainable development where only 13 percent of engineers are women.

This report is adapted from the press release: ASME’s Engineering for Change Research Fellowship Program Cohort Doubles with Autodesk Foundation Support.

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