Michael Bauer

Adjunct Faculty
BA Environmental Studies
(303) 245-4658
Listen to "The Discovery of Deep Community Resilience"
MS Civil Engineering, BA Ecology & Evolutionary Biology and Sociology /
BA Environmental Studies
COR222 / ENV215 / COR220

Michael Bauer (He/Him) arrived as Naropa’s first Director of Sustainability in January 2018, thanks to the concerted efforts of inspired students and their staff and faculty supporters. Since that time, his position has changed to become the Director of the Joanna Macy Center for Resilience and Regeneration. He works alongside students, faculty, and staff in resolute commitment to our mission of climate neutrality and ecological justice.

Michael also teaches COR222 Sustainability Seminar: Regenerative Community in Action. He is passionate about developing novel solutions in climate mitigation, humanitarian engineering and regenerative agriculture for solving entrenched challenges of poverty and community resilience. He has broad experience in sustainability program design and impact evaluation, stakeholder engagement, and project management. Michael’s fierce commitment to systems design stems from the belief that it can only be achieved through parity and justice.

From 2012–2014, Michael collaborated with community leaders in the Westwood neighborhood of Denver to deploy a low-cost solar furnace. He expanded this partnership for his Masters research in engineering for developing communities.

Michael has presented original research at the Humanitarian Technology conference of MIT, and is published in Procedia Engineering, Coastal Transitions and the Athens Journal of Education. Before arriving at Naropa, he was engineering faculty at Metropolitan State University of Denver, where he helped design a new sustainable systems engineering degree program. Prior to that, Michael was the Visitor Studies Specialist at Boulder County Parks & Open Space for 8 years. There, he was the principle investigator for eight major applied sociological studies and a principle advisor of the employee sustainability committee.

Michael has cultivated an active spiritual practice for 25 years. Since 2013, he has worked under the guidance of Naropa alumni and teachers Tory Capron, Bruce Tift and Reuvain Bacal.

He volunteers on a local carbon farming project, and loves spending time with his family, cooking, playing music, trail running, mountain biking, and gardening.


Merging Engineering Education with Service Learning: How Community Based Projects Encourage Socially Conscious Engineers, Remotely Designed Appropriate Technology for Emergency Disaster Response in Nepal, Humanitarian Technology Purposed to Build Resiliency for Vulnerable Communities Living in Low Elevation Coastal Zones, Quantitative Assessment of Appropriate Technology, Sustainable Community Development: the “EZ HEAT” Westwood Solar Furnace Project

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Naropa Campuses Closed on Friday, March 15, 2024

Due to adverse weather conditions, all Naropa campuses will be closed Friday, March 15, 2024.  All classes that require a physical presence on campus will be canceled. All online and low-residency programs are to meet as scheduled.

Based on the current weather forecast, the Healing with the Ancestors Talk & Breeze of Simplicity program scheduled for Friday evening, Saturday, and Sunday will be held as planned.

Staff that do not work remotely or are scheduled to work on campus, can work remotely. Staff that routinely work remotely are expected to continue to do so.

As a reminder, notifications will be sent by e-mail and the LiveSafe app.  

Regardless of Naropa University’s decision, if you ever believe the weather conditions are unsafe, please contact your supervisor and professors.  Naropa University trusts you to make thoughtful and wise decisions based on the conditions and situation in which you find yourself in.