Weslynne Ashton

Weslynne Ashton

Weslynne Ashton is an Associate Professor at the Illinois Institute of Technology with a joint appointment at the Stuart School of Business and the Institute of Design (ID). As a sustainable systems scientist, her research, teaching, and practice are oriented around transitioning socio-ecological systems towards sustainability and equity. She is especially interested in the adoption of socially and environmentally responsible strategies in business, and the role of innovation and entrepreneurship in addressing social and environmental challenges.

Weslynne’s research is grounded in industrial ecology and the circular economy. Her current work focuses on increasing sustainability and equity in urban food systems, developing regenerative economies in post-industrial regions, emerging economies, and small island states. Weslynne has a bachelor’s degree in environmental engineering from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and master’s and doctoral degrees in environmental science from Yale University.

Before joining Illinois Tech, Weslynne was at the Yale University School of Forestry and Environmental Studies in New Haven, CT. There, she was an associate research scientist and lecturer (2008–10), as well as a teaching assistant and project coordinator during her graduate study (2002–08). Weslynne also was general manager at Technology Experts Caribbean Holdings, Trinidad and Tobago (2000–01) and served as an environmental scientist at Gradient Corporation in Cambridge, MA (1999–2000).

In 2018, Weslynne was awarded a 2018–19 Jefferson Science Fellowship by the US National Academies of Science, Engineering, and Medicine. As a Fellow, she worked with the US Agency for International Development in the Bureau for Europe and Eurasia’s Energy and Infrastructure Division. The division works with partner countries in Southeast Europe and the Black Sea region to modernize their energy systems through the diversification of energy sources, energy efficiency improvements, and the creation of larger, transparent regional markets. Weslynne brought her expertise in industrial energy and environmental management, and circular economy, to the division’s programs, where she helped design new strategies and programs for the region.

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