Marshall Weinberg Population, Development, and Climate Change Fellows Program

Climate-related changes are affecting every corner of our global community. These changes are influencing the resources of all nations, especially agriculture, fuel sources, and water supplies, and having an impact on every facet of life, especially among the young and aging populations.

The Marshall Weinberg Population, Development, and Climate Change Fellows Program, linking the School for Environment and Sustainability (SEAS) and the Population Studies Center (PSC), provides funding support to University of Michigan graduate students, post-doctoral fellows and early career faculty who are conducting research activities focused upon population, economic development, and climate change. At least one component of this research is to occur beyond the boundaries of the United States. The recipients may have an affiliation with the PSC and/or SEAS, but such an affiliation is not required. The award must serve recipients by providing international experiences that are needed to succeed in a complex, globalized world.


Marshall Weinberg

Marshall Weinberg

After graduating from Michigan, Marshall M. Weinberg (B.A. ’50) spent a year in the graduate program at Harvard. Mr. Weinberg eventually chose to move on to the Columbia University Graduate School of Business, and then to the New York investment firm Herzfeld & Stern, where he spent his professional career.

Mr. Weinberg’s philanthropy encompasses higher education, reproductive rights (through the U-M Center for Reproductive Rights and Law) and issues in international justice. He has sponsored two conferences in the Middle East: “Utilizing Research to Promote Opportunities for Arab Children and Youth in Israel” (2003) and “Arab Women and Girls in Israel: Obstacles, Opportunities and Strategies for Change in Health, Education, and Employment” (2005).

Origins of the Fellowship

In setting up this Fellowship between the Population Studies Center (PSC) and the School of Natural Resources and Environment (SNRE), I started with the fundamental belief that interdisciplinary research and collaboration are necessary to the future of universities and to their ability to solve societal problems.

In the last few years, I have supported an interdisciplinary program between the Department of Philosophy within the U-M College of Literature, Science, and the Arts, and the cognitive sciences and have been further impressed with the importance of interdisciplinary research as well as the role that donors can play and facilitating this.

I also believe that the great ideas that will solve societal problems are going to come from our best and brightest young thinkers—our graduate students.

I believe that people don’t realize that the population is part of the environment. Furthermore, it is the character of the population, including its economics and location as well as its size that are critical. These characteristics are as important as the flora and fauna.

I have confidence in the University of Michigan’s Population Studies Center for two reasons. When I began to become aware of the importance of population studies to our future, I talked to scientists at the Brookdale Institute in Israel who said that the UM population center was the most important such center in the world. Later, I talked to leading scientists at the Population Council in New York who said that PSC was the most outstanding center in the country. Therefore, I was extremely encouraged to invest in PSC. Through the Center, I have been supporting graduate student research around the world, and I have seen how research grants of this type play a role in shaping the careers of new scholars.

For several years, I have become increasingly concerned about our environment and have been involved in the League of Conservation Voters (LCV) and the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC). I was fortunate enough to meet Dean Rosina Bierbaum at a U-M football game and was immediately impressed. My contacts at LCV and NRDC confirmed that Rosina was one of the most important thinkers in the field and had been a very influential advisor to President Clinton. I also learned that the School of Natural Resources and the Environment was a national leader.

I decided to create the Marshall Weinberg Population, Development and Climate Change Fellows Fund to link these two great units to address a problem that is so important to our future. The Weinberg Fellows Program will provide graduate students from across the University of Michigan campus with the resources to take their ideas and test them in different settings around the world and then bring them back to the intellectual community at the University of Michigan.

Marshall Weinberg
Summer 2011
New York City

At the University of Michigan, Mr. Weinberg supports Judaic Studies, the Program for Population Studies, programs at the School of Natural Resources and Environment, and the Department of Philosophy. He appreciates the importance of graduate education in the humanities.

The Marshall Weinberg Population, Development, and Climate Change Fellows Program Introductory Video on Vimeo.

Application Process

Please see the Fellowships & Awards Homepage for award amounts and application deadlines, updated at the end of each calendar year. If you have any questions about the award process, please send an email to

Additional Expectations

  • At one year mark, you will be asked to share an update about the status of your research.
  • Acknowledge ISR and this award’s support in publications and presentations.


Paloma Contreras, Department of Anthropology

Marlotte de Jong, School for Environment and Sustainability

Divya Solomon, School of Environment and Sustainability
Xiao Wang, Department of Sociology

James Allen, Ford School of Public Policy & Department of Economics
Stefania Almazán Casali, School of Environment and Sustainability
Calli VanderWilde, School of Environment and Sustainability

Vincent Battista, Department of Anthropology
Jonathan Sullivan, School of Environment and Sustainability

Lauren Schmitt, School of Environment and Sustainability
Roya Talibova, Joint Degree in Political Science and Statistics

Jennifer Zavaleta, School of Environment and Sustainability

Jeffrey Swindle, Department of Sociology & Population Studies Center

Nell Compernolle, Department of Sociology & Population Studies Center
Sara Meerow, School of Natural Resources and Environment

Chistoph Nolte, School of Natural Resources and Environment