SF State News {University Communications}

Image: Photos of SF State students and scenes from around campus

News Release

Media Advisory: SF State experts available to comment on environmental and sustainability issues

SAN FRANCISCO, February 14, 2008 -- With issues of green living and sustainability becoming more prevalent every day, San Francisco State University offers a range of faculty experts who can share their knowledge of topics from responsible business practices and sustainable campus living to green fashion and conservation. The faculty described below may be contacted directly for interviews.


For additional assistance locating an expert, contact SF State University Communications at (415) 338-1665 or visit www.sfsu.edu/~news.


Sustainable and Socially Responsible Business

Murray Silverman, professor of management

Areas of expertise: Business and society; strategic management; business impact on the natural environment; environmentally sustainable business practices. Silverman created SF State's first courses on business and the environment.

"A lot of business people think of environmental and social issues as threats, as opposed to opportunities to enhance a reputation, to excite people who work there, to develop new products and services," Silverman said.

Contact Murray Silverman at (415) 338-7489 and msilver@sfsu.edu


Tom Thomas, assistant professor of management

Areas of expertise: Social, political, ethical and legal strategies of business; business political strategy and corporate environmental management. Thomas co-founded the first environmental management MBA in the U.S.

"People think it's the threat of regulation or market opportunities to sell greener products that influences companies," he said, "but we're finding that it's really personal values of the top management team that makes a difference."

Contact Tom Thomas at (415) 338-6086 and tethomas@sfsu.edu


Bruce Paton, assistant professor of management

Areas of expertise: Social dimensions of sustainability and government; environmental consulting; corporate product stewardship programs; corporate voluntary environmental initiatives; policies to influence corporate environmental performance. Before teaching, Paton worked on environmental management issues at Hewlett-Packard.

"We're talking about 4 billion out of 6 billion people on the planet who are not served by things you and I take for granted," Paton said of the future of environmental business. "You can be depressed or look at it and say, 'that's a good business opportunity."

Contact Bruce Paton at (415) 338-7012 and bpaton@sfsu.edu


Peter Melhus, assistant professor of management

Areas of expertise: Climate change and energy policy; institutionalized incentives for corporate, social and environmental responsibility; the relationship of corporations to their external constituents. Before teaching, he directed environmental policy for PG&E.

"I believe we are reaching a tipping point in public opinion about global climate change issues," Melhus said. "Business is the most significant player in that issue."

Contact Peter Melhus at (415) 405-3678 and melhus@sfsu.edu


Denise Kleinrichert, assistant professor of management

Areas of expertise: Business ethics; corporate social responsibility; sustainable business; human resources in the insurance hospital and banking industries; agricultural practices; environmental changes and land use.

"Global warming is on everyone's mind and everyone is talking about the greening of business," she said. "But there are an increasing number of corporations interested in what's going on in communities. I think the social aspect has always been there but not as prominently. But because of the spread of multinational corporate enterprise, we're dealing with it more."

Contact Denise Kleinrichert at (415) 338-7486 and dk@sfsu.edu


Environmental and Sustainability Issues

Connie Ulasewicz, assistant professor consumer and family studies

Areas of expertise: Sustainable fashion; making informed choices about clothing (for example, the differences between conventional and organic cotton). Producing fashionable garments using renewable resources; humane manufacturing practices.

“Sustainable fashion seems an oxymoron,” Ulasewicz says. “After all, sustainable is about longevity and fashion is about change.”

Contact Connie Ulasewicz at (415) 338-1860 (office), (650) 245-1805 or cbu@sfsu.edu


Jim Bolinger, associate director of residential property management

He organized Towers Residents' Environmental Organization (TREO) -- the first on-campus themed living community devoted to eco-friendly and sustainable housing. Advises a student club that addresses sustainable living in student housing and initiated a compact fluorescent light (CFL) distribution program among on-campus residents. Organized a community garden behind Mary Park Lounge.

"This is a foundation for life: to learn how to be more sustainable," Bolinger said. "That was the whole idea with the Green Apartment last semester, to show that you can be sustainable without really inconveniencing yourself and really without spending very much money. As a society, we need to make that conversion, and we’re not doing very well."

Contact Jim Bolinger at (415) 335-4417 and bolinger@sfsu.edu


Raquel Pinderhughes, professor of urban studies

Areas of expertise: Sustainable development in cities; urban environmental planning and policy making; environmental justice; urban agriculture; local food systems. 'Green collar jobs,' which she defines as manual labor jobs in businesses whose primary products or services benefit the environment.

"Green collar jobs can provide low-income men and women with meaningful work that serves their communities and helps preserve the environment," Pinderhughes said.

Contact Raquel Pinderhughes at (415) 338-7520 and raquelrp@sfsu.edu


Joel J. Kassiola, dean, college of behavioral and social sciences and professor of political science

Areas of expertise: Environmental political theory, history of consumerism and economic growth, politics and ethics of a consumer society, economic development of China.

"The ethical and moral pitfalls of a consumer society are intangible and can be hard to grasp" says Kassiola. "But when people see birds choked with oil, or the air above Beijing, they can be mobilized for change."

Contact Joel Kassiola at (415) 338-7692 and kassioloa@sfsu.edu


Carlos Davidson, assistant professor/director Environmental Studies Program

Areas of expertise: Environmental justice issues and climate change, amphibian conservation, conservation biology, conservation of endangered species, sustainability issues on college campuses, climate change policy.

"There will be a disparate impact on who is going to get hurt by climate change," Davidson said. "Millions of people are going to die, and they're poor people. It's already happening—floods, hurricanes, drought. The head of the UN said we're seeing climate change impact already. Who is going to be able to escape the pain?"

Contact Carlos Davidson at (415) 405-2127 and carlosd@sfsu.edu


About SF State One of the largest campuses in the California State University system, SF State was founded in 1899 and today is a highly diverse, comprehensive, public urban university. SF State is the only master's-level public university serving the counties of San Francisco, San Mateo and Marin. The University enrolls about 29,000 students each year and graduates about 7,000 annually. With nationally acclaimed programs in a range of fields -- from creative writing, cinema and biology to history, broadcast and electronic communication arts, and ethnic studies -- the University's more than 150,000 graduates have contributed to the economic, cultural and civic fabric of San Francisco and beyond. For more information, please visit www.sfsu.edu.


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