The National Academy of Engineering has named Robert Socolow, Princeton professor of mechanical and aerospace engineering, to a prestigious international committee to identify the greatest challenges and opportunities for engineering in the 21st century.

Chaired by former U.S. Secretary of Defense William Perry, the Grand Challenges for Engineering Committee will explore engineering solutions for the future drawing on its members’ own expertise and extensive public input to the project’s website.

Socolow, who joined the Princeton faculty in 1971, co-directs Princeton’s Carbon Mitigation Initiative with Stephen Pacala, professor of ecology and evolutionary biology. In September, Socolow and Pacala coauthored an article in Scientific American outlining strategies for mitigating carbon dioxide emissions. In February at the annual meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, they will host a town hall meeting for teachers on how to explain climate change to students.

Two graduates of Princeton’s School of Engineering and Applied Science also have been appointed to the National Academy of Engineering Grand Challenges committee: Wesley Harris and Jackie Ying.