Richard L. Corsi, Ph.D., P.E.

Dean of the College of Engineering

University of California, Davis



House plants and indoor air quality

Let me begin with an admission.  I like indoor plants.  Throughout my career I have usually had one large plant in my work office.  Plants are nice to look at, and visitors often comment on the “nice plant.”  But while I like indoor plants, and suspect that they have some benefit in terms of psychological…

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The Dose Makes the (risk of) Infection

As the number of inhaled viruses or aerosol particles that contain the virus increases, the probability of infection increases. As such, we should be paying attention to inhaled dose, or better yet inhaled deposited dose, as a value that we want to reduce for scenarios involving two or more persons in an indoor space. I…

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Richard L. Corsi is Dean of the College of Engineering at the University of California, Davis. He previously served on the faculty of the University of Guelph prior to 24 years in the Department of Civil, Architectural and Environmental Engineering at the University of Texas at Austin and as Dean of the College of Engineering and Computer Science at Portland State University. At UT Austin he served as department chair, endowed research chair, and member of the Academy of Distinguished Teachers. Dr. Corsi and his research team have studied indoor air quality, from sources to fate and control of pollutants of both indoor and outdoor origin. His team was the first to incorporate a complex outdoor atmospheric chemistry algorithm into a model for indoor atmospheres, and also completed a modeling effort focused on cost-benefit analyses of indoor ozone control in a dozen cities, accounting for ozone reaction products. His team studied disinfectant interactions and by-product formation with a wide range of indoor materials, potential for passive removal materials to quench indoor chemistry, and indoor SOA formation in actual homes and laboratory chambers in the presence of common consumer products. Dr. Corsi has been honored as a Distinguished Alumnus of Humboldt State University (2006) and the College of Engineering at the University of California at Davis (2016). He is past President of the Academy of Fellows of the International Society of Indoor Air Quality and Climate. Dr. Corsi’s work has been featured in The Economist, National Geographic, NY Times, Washington Post, CBC The Nature of Things, NPR’s Science Friday w/ Ira Flatow, and more.