National Academy of Sciences

Determined that science had a major role to play in informing policymakers on issues of global sustainability, Mr. Mitchell lobbied the National Academy of Sciences in the 1980s to marshal its resources to engage in periodic "foresight" reports for the benefit of lawmakers. 

His relationship with the Academy escalated in the mid-90s when Mr. and Mrs. Mitchell underwrote a research program that culminated in the 1999 publication, Our Common Journey: A Transition Toward Sustainability. According to the National Academy of Sciences, this "landmark" report "redefined the role science and technology can play in sustainable development. Our Common Journey helped establish the National Academies' long-term commitment to research for global economic development that maximizes the efficient and wise use of the Earth's resources."

In 2002, through a $20 million multi-year investment, the Cynthia and George Mitchell Foundation established the George and Cynthia Mitchell Endowment for Sustainability Science at the National Academy of Sciences. The endowment is to be held in perpetuity by the Academy and used to guide academic, government, and other institutions in the development of sustainability science and to encourage the world's business community to apply knowledge from this emerging field in business practices.

© 2012-2024 Cynthia and George Mitchell Foundation.