In the summer of 1969, the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory's building-energy guru, Stephen E. Selkowitz, spent seven weeks in New York City brainstorming better ways to get hydroelectric power to the people. The 21-year-old Harvard physics major was one of 25 young adults immersed in the first "World Game" workshop of R. Buckminster Fuller, a Renaissance man best remembered for the geodesic dome. Fuller's goal was to improve the global human condition through "design science."
Selkowitz recalls the workshop as a "catalyzing" experience that opened his eyes to the world of architecture and global resource conservation. "Hearing Bucky Fuller in real time was amazing. I was fascinated by his vision of how to fix the world," says the 66-year-old Selkowitz, senior adviser for building science of the environmental energy technologies division of the Berkeley lab, which is owned by the U.S. Dept. of Energy and operated by the University of California, Berkeley.