Work with the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, Sesame Street in Communities and Johns Hopkins University
Challenge Millions of children in the United States—nearly half of all children in fact—face some sort of traumatic experience when they’re young. This can include things like the death of a parent or guardian, living with someone who struggles with … Continue reading Bringing Childhood Trauma Front and Center→
In September of 2014, just before thousands of politicians and climate activists flooded the streets of New York for the United Nations Climate Summit, four indigenous leaders were shot to death by illegal loggers in the Ucayali region of Peru’s Amazon Rainforest.
Indigenous partners in Peru contacted Burness via Facebook to help spread the word about this tragedy, the latest in a string of attacks on environmental defenders in tropical forest regions.
The nation’s community colleges are underrecognized, underappreciated, and undervalued—but many are also underperforming. Seven million Americans—nearly half of all people who go to college—attend community college, particularly low-income, Hispanic and African American students who require an affordable option … Continue reading Raising the Bar for Community Colleges→
Work with the Tyler Prize for Environmental Achievement
As we face global threats to our environment—from the loss of biodiversity, to climate change, to increasing water scarcity—much of the public dialogue around our environment is driven by politics and hyperbole. Too often the science that should … Continue reading Elevating World-Class Environmental Science→
Work with the World Resources Institute and the Rights and Resources Initiative
The world's forests are being destroyed at a rate of 50 soccer fields every minute, accounting for 11 percent of global carbon dioxide emissions. A solution exists that is both cost-effective and available: deforestation rates are dramatically lower in forests where governments actively enforce the rights of indigenous peoples and local communities over their land.