Stefanie M. Falconi

Policy Entrepreneur & Co-Founder, Instituto Limite

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Dare to change your little corner of the world.

What do you do?

I'm an academic with an entrepreneurial spirit. I see an urgent need to make progress towards sustainability and climate action, so I've made it my mission. I'm a consultant and climate strategists, helping create policy within companies, institutions, and government to respond to climate risks.

Why did you choose this field?

The short version is that I grew up in South America immersed in the outdoors. It was my first laboratory, but I grew up seeing environmental conservation and economic development as contradictory objectives. So I wanted to find new models for development, one that took people and planet into account. Resource management is part science part art, and I work in that intersection.

What do you look at and think, "I wish younger me would have known this was possible"?

Most girls where I come are lucky if they finish high school. So every achievement was necessary and welcomed. If I had to pick THE one, it would be earning my Ph.D. But what is important here is not the title, rather the entire journey to become a Ph.D. I learned that I could create original knowledge, of my own imagination, building on a body of knowledge from intellectual giants. For anyone that's ever birth something into this world, its one of the most difficult and most rewarding transformations. As a child, I did not know this world existed.

Why do you love working in STEM?

Curiosity! A curious mind is an awful thing to waste... I never knew I could build a career from being curious. I love the scientific method, the process of figuring things out, the joy of exploration and discovery. I think there is no feeling like it. I love the power of ideas and how they can transform forever how we see the world.

Best advice for next generation?

I don't have to do things they way they have always been done. Dare to change your little corner of the world.

Inspo quote / fun fact / role model

“The arc of history bends toward justice.”

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