Friday January 18, 2013 Kroon Hall, Burke Auditorium
Agenda, registration, and speaker biographies below
|8:30 – 8:40||
Welcome and Introduction - Professor Gaboury Benoit, Yale F&ES
8:40 - 12:00
Human Dimensions of Urban Ecology and Urbanization
Morgan Grove, U.S. Forest Service: "Urban Residential Landowners: The Social Dilemma of the New and Dominant Forest Landowner"
Coffee Break (10:15 - 10:30)
Paty Romero-Lankao, National Center for Atmospheric Research: "Imagining Urban Futures: Some Reflections"
12:45 – 3:30
Urban Infrastructure and Metabolism
Arpad Horvath, University of California, Berkeley: "What is Next for Urban Infrastructure Design and Operation?"
Coffee Break (1:50 - 2:00)
Emily Zechman, North Carolina State University: "Cities and Water: Sociotechnical Simulation for Managing Urban Water Resources and Infrastructure"
|3:30 – 3:45||Closing Remarks – Professor Thomas Graedel, Yale F&ES|
Dr. J. Morgan Grove is a Social Ecologist and Team Leader for the USDA Forest Service's Baltimore Field Station. He is a Co-Principal Investigator in the Baltimore Ecosystem Study (BES) LTER. Grove was a dual major in Architecture and Studies in the Environment from Yale College (B.A.), a M.F.S. in Community Forestry from the Yale School of Forestry & Environmental Studies, and a M. Phil. and Ph.D. in Social Ecology from Yale University.
Grove has worked in Baltimore since 1989 and was a founding member of the BES LTER. Grove leads the social science team for BES, where his research focuses on long term dynamics of property regimes, land management, and watersheds. Grove is the science lead for the Urban Tree Canopy (UTC) software tools. In 2001, for his work in Baltimore, Grove was the first social scientist in the U.S. Forest Service to every receive the President’s award for early career scientists.
Dr. Christopher Boone is Professor and Associate Dean in the School of Sustainability at Arizona State University. He is presently a visiting professor at Georgetown University.
For more than a dozen years, he has participated in the Baltimore Ecosystem Study examining the long term social and environmental drivers and consequences of urbanization. His research contributes to ongoing debates in sustainable urbanization, environmental justice, vulnerability, and global environmental change. He is a co-PI for the Central Arizona Phoenix LTER, Baltimore Ecosystem LTER, two Urban Long Term Research Area projects (DC, Los Angeles) and the PI for a comparative ULTRA award (Phoenix, Albuquerque, Las Cruces) all supported by the National Science Foundation. For the past three years he has sat on the scientific steering committee for the Urbanization and Global Environmental Change project, a core initiative of the International Human Dimensions program, and also participated in the US Global Change Research Program's US National
Climate Assessment for Cities. He received his PhD in Geography from the University of Toronto in 1994.
Dr. Deborah Balk is Professor at the City University of New York (CUNY)’s Baruch School of Public Affairs and the CUNY Graduate Center (in the Sociology and Economics Programs) and Associate Director of the CUNY Institute for Demographic Research. Her expertise lies in spatial demography and the integration of earth and social science data and methods to address interdisciplinary policy questions. Her current research focus is on urbanization, population, poverty, and environmental interactions (such as climate change). Prior to joining CUNY in 2006, she was a research scientist Columbia University’s Center for International Earth Science Information Network where she was also lead Project Scientist for the NASA-funded Socioeconomic Data and Applications Center. She received her Ph.D. in Demography from the University of California at Berkeley, and her Master’s Degree in Public Policy, and A.B. in International Relations, from the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor. She has recently completed service on an National Research Council panel on Himalayan Glaciers, Hydrology, Climate Change, and Implications for Water Security and co-authored a paper on city population forecasts and water scarcity in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.
Dr. Paty Romero-Lankao is a "multidisciplinary sociologist" by training leading the Urban Futures Initiative at NCAR (http://www.ral.ucar.edu/staff/prlankao-staff.php), US where she is a research scientist since 2006. Her work has focused on crucial intersections between urban development and the environment. In particular, she has studied key issues of (a) how particular cities attempt to meet the challenges of reducing emissions while improving their capacity to respond to environmental impacts; (b) how urban development impacts the environment; and (c) what societal factors explain cities' vulnerability/resilience to environmental hazards. In addition to research supported by academic awards, she has participated in global and local endeavors promoted by IPCC, UNDP and UN-HABITAT. She was co-leading author to Working Group II of the Nobel prize-winning IPCC’s Fourth Assessment Report and is currently convening author of the AR5 North American chapter.
Dr. Frances E. “Ming” Kuo is a faculty member at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, where she directs the multidisciplinary Landscape and Human Health Laboratory. She holds appointments in both the Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Sciences and in the Department of Psychology. Her background is in cognitive psychology and environmental psychology, with degrees from the University of California, Berkeley (M.A.) and the University of Michigan (Ph.D.).
Ming Kuo is a nationally and internationally recognized scientist examining the impacts of urban landscapes on human health. Her research focuses on how the presence of trees, grass, and other natural elements within the settings of daily life supports healthy human functioning in both individuals and communities. Starting in 1993, she led a series of studies on the impacts of green residential spaces on human functioning in inner city Chicago, for which she and her collaborators received the Environmental Design Research Association’s Achievement Award. Subsequently, she and her former student Dr. Andrea Faber Taylor began examining the impacts of green spaces on Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (AD/HD); that line of investigation has yielded both rigorously controlled evidence of a cause-and-effect relationship between physical environments and AD/HD symptoms, as well as a large, national study documenting the generalizability of this relationship. Currently, in addition to her AD/HD work, Dr. Kuo is investigating positive impacts of schoolyard environments on students’ academic achievement (as measured by standardized test scores), and the impacts of green space on physical health. Dr. Kuo’s work has convincingly linked healthy urban ecosystems to stronger, safer neighborhoods, lower crime, reduced AD/HD symptoms, reduced aggression, and an array of mental health indicators.
Dr. Arpad Horvath is a professor in the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering at the University of California, Berkeley http://www.ce.berkeley.edu/~horvath), head of the Energy, Civil Infrastructure and Climate Graduate Program, Director of the Consortium on Green Design and Manufacturing, and Director of the Engineering and Business for Sustainability certificate program (http://sustainable-engineering.berkeley.edu). His research focuses on life-cycle environmental and economic assessment of products, processes, and services, particularly of civil infrastructure systems and the built environment. He was Conference Chair of the 6th International Conference on Industrial Ecology in 2011. Professor Horvath is an Associate Editor of the Journal of Infrastructure Systems. He is a member of the, Environmental Engineering Committee of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s Science Advisory Board.
Dr. Austin Troy is Associate Professor at the University of Vermont’s Rubenstein School of Environment and Natural Resources and Director of UVM's Transportation Research Center. He has a secondary academic appointment in Computer Science. He addresses issues at the intersection of urban and regional planning and environmental sustainability using tools such as Geographic Information Systems, spatial econometrics, and dynamic modeling. He is author of the book The Very Hungry City (Yale University Press, 2012), which is about how cities consume energy, what rising global energy prices will mean for cities in the future, and what cities can do today reduce their energy footprint without compromising their quality of life. He also lead-edited and co-authored the book Living on the Edge: Economic, Institutional and Management Perspectives on Wildfire Hazard in the Urban Interface (Elsevier Press, 2007), and has authored dozens of journal articles and book chapters. His work has been covered in numerous media venues, including public radio stations across the country, The Boston Globe, Vancouver Sun, Grist, Baltimore Sun, Atlantic Monthly’s Atlantic Cities magazine, Slate, Calgary Herald, Edmonton Journal, and many others. He is Principal and Co-founder of Spatial Informatics Group, LLC, a California-based environmental consulting firm in operation since 1998. He is a fellow of the Gund Institute of Ecological Economics and co-principal investigator of the Baltimore Ecosystem Study, one of the National Science Foundation’s two urban Long-Term Ecological Research projects. In addition, he served for four years as a planning commissioner for the city of Burlington VT. Educated at Yale College (B.A.), Yale School of Forestry & Environmental Studies (M.F.), and University of California Berkeley (Ph.D.), he is originally from Los Angeles, CA.
Dr. Emily Zechman graduated with her B.S. and M.S. in Civil Engineering at the University of Kentucky, and she completed her Ph.D. at North Carolina State University, where her doctorate research developed new systems analysis methodologies to address planning and management for management water resources systems. Upon completion of her Ph.D. in 2005, she worked at North Carolina State University (NCSU) as a post-doctorate research associate and a research assistant professor. In 2007, Dr. Zechman moved to Texas A&M University as an assistant professor in the Department of Civil Engineering. In 2011, she returned to the NCSU Department of Civil, Construction, & Environmental Engineering as an assistant professor.
Dr. Zechman leads the Sociotechnical Systems Analysis Laboratory at NCSU. The research addresses the question, “How do human behaviors and choices impact the performance of engineered infrastructure systems?” New simulation and optimization methodologies are developed to study and understand the interconnections among water resources, society, energy resources, and infrastructure. This research program seeks to provide new understanding of urban sociotechnical systems by developing modeling techniques that couple engineering and environmental models with complex adaptive models, including agent-based, cellular automata, and system dynamics simulation tools. New evolutionary computation-based algorithms are coupled with sociotechnical models to develop public policy for managing the sustainability, security, and resilience of water resources. Dr. Zechman teaches undergraduate and graduate courses in water resources engineering, hydrology, and systems analysis for civil engineering. Dr. Zechman received Best Research-Oriented Paper Awards in 2010 and 2011 for her publications in the ASCE Journal of Water Resources Planning and Management.
Dr. Kevin J. Krizek is Professor of Environmental Design and Transport at the University of Colorado (CU) where he also serves as Outreach and Education Coordinator for Sustainability efforts. Krizek heads the Active Communities / Transportation (ACT) Research Group--researchers studying how land use-transportation policies influence household residential location decisions and travel behavior. He is appointed to the bicycle transportation committee of the Transportation Research Board of the National Academies and is the Senior Transportation Fellow for the Environmental Center at CU.
From 2007-2012, Krizek was Director of the PhD Program in Design and Planning in the College of Architecture and Planning. He is founding co-editor of theJournal of Transport and Land Use, chaired the inaugural World Symposium on Transport and Land Use Research(2011), and from 2006-2012, he was Chair of the Transportation Research Board Committee on Telecommunications and Travel (a division of the National Research Council). Krizek earned a Ph.D. in Urban Design and Planning and M.S.C.E. from the University of Washington. His master's degree in planning is from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hilland his undergraduate degree is from Northwestern University. Professor Krizek maintains a blog at www.vehicleforasmallplanet.comon active communities, active transportation, and bicycle planning.
The Open Spaces as Learning Places curriculum was developed to teach New Haven students about environmental stewardship through exploration of open space sites in their communities. The curriculum targets 6th grade and aligns with state-mandated science standards. These students are old enough to understand and appreciate the complex nature of local ecological systems and young enough to retain their sense of wonder that comes from investigating the world around them. Yale F&ES students taught the curriculum in dozens of classrooms over 8 years. The positive response by principals, teachers and their students led the New Haven Board of Education to adopt the Open Spaces curriculum as the required instruction in 2009. Thirty New Haven teachers attended Yale F&ES for a week-long training to prepare for the transition and to lead the instruction.
As part of the Master of Environmental Management degree program, the School of Forestry & Environmental Studies offers a Specialization in Urban Ecology
PURPOSE AND SCOPE
This specialization applies the concepts of traditional ecology to urban ecosystems and seeks to understand how they compare to undeveloped environments. Most of the world’s inhabitants live in cities, and that proportion is growing daily. Thus, urban ecosystems are the ones people interact with directly most of the time. Urban ecosystems encompass all of the elements of rural areas, but include large human populations and their associated built environments. As a result, urban ecology must integrate classical ecology with other fields, including engineering, architecture, anthropology, economics, and law.
Five to seven grant awards ranging from $5,000 - $7,000 are available to Yale FES students interested in conducting natural and social science research, education & outreach projects for the following topic areas:
In the fall 2013 term, students must take a 3-credit project course to complete their research/project manuscript. Projects must be completed by mid-December 2013. The award will be provided in 3 installments: 50% upon acceptance of the proposal; 25% upon enrollment in the project course in September; and the final 25% upon completion of the project course, and receipt of an abstract and of a minimum 10-page final report (which will be published on the Hixon website).
Applicants are strongly encouraged to attend the 2012 Hixon Fellow presentations on March 4, 2013, in a Kroon Hall classroom, TBD. Lunch will be provided.
Gaboury Benoit Colleen Murphy-Dunning
Faculty Director Center Director
Advancing fundamental knowledge and understanding of urban ecosystems
Advancing the practice of sustainable environmental design for the urban landscape
Fostering the positive experience of natural systems among urban residents
Examining the relationships, impacts and demands of urban watersheds
Initiating community based land stewardship and resource management
Teaching interdisciplinary urban science and policy nationally and internationally
These pages provide links to bibliographic information and organizational websites that are related to various issues associated with the mission of the Hixon Center for Urban Ecology. The information contained on these pages has been gathered through student projects and by Hixon Center student assistants. It is not meant to be an all inclusive list of sources on each topic, nor has every source been evaluated for quality. More information resources within the field of urban ecology will be added to this Website in the near future. In addition, these pages will be updated regularly; please visit this site again for new information.
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Bottle Biology; M. Ingram, Kendall/Hunt Publishing Co.; 1993. The Carnegie Academy for Science Education; C.C. James, 1995.
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Critters; M.M. Allen, Aims Education Foundation; 1989.
Earth Child; Sheehan & Waidner, Council Oak Press; 1991.
Earth in Mind: On Education, Environment and the Human Prospect; David Reid, Earthscan Publications, Ltd.; London, 1995.
Ecological Literacy: Education and the Transition to a Postmodern World; David Orr, State University of New York Press; 1992.
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Environmental Education in the Schools: Creating a Program That Works!; J.A. Braus and D. Wood, North American Association for Environmental Education; 1993.
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Science Arts; M.A. Kohl, J. Potter, Bright Ring Publishing; 1993.
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Learning About Plants (LEAP), Grade 5 Curricula; Cornell Plantation, 1991.
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Changing Learner Behavior Through Environmental Education. Hungerford, H.R. and T.L. Volk; Journal of Environmental Education; Aug 1990.
The Development and Retention of Environmental Attitudes in Elementary School Children. Jaus, H.H.; Journal of Environmental Education pp. 33-36; 1984.
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Promotes Portland, Oregon's urban open spaces through summer programming for children and community
“We develop, compile, categorize, and deliver environmental education and information resources using leading electronic technologies”
Provide resources for environmental educators, with a special focus on South Central Wisconsin.
National Tree Trust
Educate and empower America's youth while planting trees.
Wisconsin Nature Center directory.
North American Association for Environmental Education
National Environmental Education Advancement Project
Children’s Participation: The Theory and Practice of Involving Young Citizens in Community Development and Environmental Care. Hart, R.A., UNICEF, 1997.
Community Benefits from Urban Forestry: The Urban Resources Initiative Managing Urban and High Use Recreation Settings. Grove, M., K.E. Vatcha, M.H. McDonough, W.R. Burch, Jr. USDA Forestry, 1993.
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A Place to Grow: Voices and Images of Urban Gardeners, Hassler, D. and L. Gregor, Pilgrim Press, 1999.
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Measuring the Value of the Urban Forest. MacDonald, L., American Forests 102:26-29, 1996.
Participating in Urban Forestry Projects: How the Community Benefits. Westphal, L.M., American Forests, 1995.
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Social Forestry and GIS. Grove, J.M. and M. Hohmann, Journal of Forestry pp. 10-15, 1992.
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Trees New York
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USDA Forest Service
USDA's Plants home page
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Brownfields: A Practical Guide to the Cleanup, Transfer and Redevelopment of Contaminated Property. Moyer, C. and G. Trimarche. Argent Communications Group. 1997.
Brownfields Redevelopment: A Guidebook for Local Governments and Communities. Kirshenberg, S.; Fischer, W.; Bartsch, C. and E. Collaton. International City/County Management Association and Northeast-Midwest Institute, Washington, D.C. 1997.
Brownfield Redevelopment, Air Quality and Electricity Restructuring. Center for Clean Air Policy, Washington, D.C. 1998.
The Brownfields Report
A bi-weekly newsletter that provides the latest information on brownfields projects, policies, and events. It is available in hard copy, via e-mail or fax.
Phone: (202) 638-4260
Fax: (202) 662-9744
Brownfields State of the State Report: 50-State Program Roundup. Bartsch, C. Northeast-Midwest Institute, Washington, D.C. 1998.
Characteristics of Sustainable Brownfields Projects. U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Office of Solid Waste and Emergency Response (EPA 500-R-98-001). 1998.
The Effects of Environmental Hazards and Regulation on Urban Redevelopment. U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, Office of Policy Development and Research, Washington, D.C. 1998.
Environmental Justice, Urban Revitalization, and Brownfields: The Search for Authentic Signs of Hope. National Environmental Justice Advisory Council. NEJAC, Waste and Facility Siting Committee, New York. 1996.
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Financing Brownfield Reuse: Creative Use of Public Sector Programs. Bartsch, C. Northeast-Midwest Institute, Washington, D.C. 1997.
Innovations in Brownfield Finance: Issues, Opportunities, and Emerging Initiatives. Northeast-Midwest Institute, Washington, D.C. 1998.
Innovative Strategies, Practical Solutions: A Blueprint for Brownfield Redevelopment. Council of Great Lakes Governors, Chicago. 1998.
Lessons from the Field: Unlocking Economic Potential with an Environmental Key. Pepper, E. Northeast-Midwest Institute, Washington, D.C. 1997.
Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection. Brownfields Legislation: Q&A. Executive Office of Environmental Affairs. March 13, 1997.
New Direction, A Report on Regulatory Reinvention: The Brownfields Economic Redevelopment Initiative, Laying the Framework for Sustainability. U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Office of Reinvention (EPA 100-R-98-20). 1998.
Pennsylvania’s Land Recycling Program Annual Report, Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection. July 1998.
Recycling America’s Land: A National Report on Brownfields Redevelopment. U.S. Conference of Mayors, Washington, D.C. 1998.
Redeveloping Brownfields: How States and Localities Use CDBG Funds. U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, Office of Policy Development and Research, Washington, D.C. 1998.
Turning Brownfields Into Greenbacks: Developing and Financing Environmental Contaminated Urban Real Estate. Simons, R. 1998.
The Urban Land Institute, Washington, D.C.: Thinking Ecologically, The Next Generation of Environmental Law and Policy, Esty, D. and M. Chertow, Eds., Yale University Press, New Haven. 1997.
ULI on the Future: Smart Growth. Urban Land Institute, Washington, D.C. 1998.
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Brownfields Bear Fruit for Developers. Feldman, A. Crain’s New York Business, 12(46). 1996.
Brownfields, Environmental Federalism, and Institutional Determinism. Buzbee, W. William and Mary Environmental Law and Policy Review, 21(1). 1997.
Brownfields in Bloom: Restoring Contaminated Properties. Brand, M. and J. Herman. Bench and Bar, May/June, 1997.
Brownfields National Partnership: The Federal Role in Brownfields Redevelopment. Kaiser, S. Public Works Management and Policy, 2(3). 1998.
Brownfields of Dreams: Can EPA, Developers, and Local Communities Transform Old Industrial Sites into New Economic Hopes? Lerner, S. The Amicus Journal, Winter 1996.
Brownfields Perspective from Dr. Suess to Government Initiatives. O’Conner, R. and L. Pasciak. The Weston Way, March 1996.
Brownfields Redevelopment: A State-led Reform of Superfund Liability. Andrew, A. Natural Resources and Environment, 10(3): 27-31. 1996.
Brownfields – Redevelopment Efforts Grow. Williams, C. Wall Street Journal. September 22, 1995.
Designing and Enforcing Institutional Controls for Contaminated Properties: A Primer for Local Governments. Schilling, J. Municipal Lawyer, 39(2). 1998.
Pay Dirt: Real Estate Investors Avoid Properties that May be Polluted: Ron Bruder Thrives on the Yucky Stuff. Geer, C. Forbes, April 20, 1998.
Public Health and Brownfields: Reviving the Past to Protect the Future. Greenberg, M.; Lee, C. and C. Powers. American Journal of Public Health (accepted for publication). 1998.
Reclaiming Our Lost Industrial Heritage: Trenton’s Experience. Mallach, Alan. New Jersey Municipalities, March 1998.
Technology; Composite; Finding Greenbacks in Brownfields. Merrion, P. Crain's Chicago Business, April 8, 1996.
The Brownfields Center
Brownfield Central: Market place for Property Resources
The Brownfields Non-Profits Network
The Center for Brownfields Initiatives
Environmental Law Institute
EPA Brownfields News and Events
Great Lakes Environmental Finance Center
International City/County Management Association
Northeast-Midwest Institute, Center for Regional Policy
Northeast-Midwest Institute Publications
Resources for the Future
U.S. Conference of Mayors
American Redevelopment, L.L.C.
27525 Puenta Real, Suite 100-606
Mission Viejo, CA 92691
Brownfield Development Corporation
3105-C North Wilke Road
Arlington Heights, IL 60004
Cherokee Industries, L.L.C.
5445 DTC Parkway, Suite 900
Englewood, CO 80111
Phone: (303) 771-9200
Dames & Moore/Brookhill, L.L.C.
11 East 44th Street, 14th Floor
New York, NY 10017
Phone: (212) 986-6660
Fax: (212) 986-6662
Greenfield Development Corporation
13102 NE 20th Street
Bellevue, WA 98005
Phone: (206) 885-2897
Fax: (206) 869-6497
Koll ENSR Realty Advisors
275 Battery Street, Suite 1300
San Francisco, CA 94111
Phone: (415) 772-0259
Fax: (415) 772-0459
National RE/Sources Corporation
485 West Putnam Avenue
Greenwich, CT 06830
Phone: (203) 661-0055
Fax: (203) 661-8071
Phoenix Land Recycling
3700 Vartan Way
Harrisburg, PA 17110
Phone: (717) 541-1980
Fax: (717) 541-1970
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Sustainable Communities: A New Design for Cities, Suburbs, and Towns. Van der Ryn, Sim & Calthorpe, Peter. San Francisco: Sierra Club Books, 1986.
Sustainable Development: Science, Ethics, and Public Policy. Lovins, A., Brylawski, M., Cramer, D. and Moore, T. Rocky Mountain Institute, Colorado. 1996.
Toward a Sustainable Future: Addressing the Long-Term Effects of Motor Vehicle Transportation on Climate and Ecology. Transportation Research Board (TRB). National Research Council: Washington, D.C. Special Report 251. 1997.
Urban Environmental Management: Environmental Change and Urban Design. White, R.W. John Wiley & Sons. 1994.
The Urban Wilderness: A History of the American City. Warner, Sam Bass Jr. Berkeley and Los Angeles: University of California Press, 1995.
Water and the City: The Next Century. Rosen, Howard and Ann Durkin Keating, Chicago: Public Works Historical Society, 385 pages. 1991.
Xerox: Design for the Environment. Harvard Business School. Harvard Business School Publishing, Boston. 1993.
A home fit for ecowarriors. Berry, John, New Scientist, July 30: 40. 1994.
Architecture goes green: an array of new projects proves that buildings can be ecologically correct, cost-efficient and beautiful as well. Lemonick, Michael D., Time, April 5: 38. 1993.
Audubon building flies as energy-efficient wonder. Weiss, Lois, Real Estate Weekly, 39(29): 1A. 1993.
Audubon Society opens green headquarters; environmentally designed building. Crosbie, Michael J., Progressive Architecture, 74(3): 19. 1993.
The benefits of lean and clean. Romm, Joseph J., Technology Review, 98(Feb./Mar.): 70-71. 1995.
The Chickens Can Come Home to Roost: the anatomy of a local infrastructure crisis. Rosell, Ellen. Urban Affairs Quarterly. 30, December 1994.
Cities in the developing world: Agenda for action following HABITAT II. Annez, Patricia and Alfred Friendly. Finance & Development, 33(December): 12-14. 1996.
The concepts of sustainable development and environmentally sound technology. Brooks, H. ATAS Bulletin 1(7). 1992.
Current concepts: building related illnesses. Menzies, Dick and Jean Bourbeau, The New England Journal of Medicine, 337(November 20): 1524-1531. 1997.
Economic effects of poor IAQ: Just opening a window can disrupt production. Haymore, Curtis and Rosemarie Odom, EPA Journal, Fall 1993.
Effect of a new ventilation system on health and well being of office workers. Menzies, Dick, Joe Pasztor, Fatima Nunes, Jeff Leduc, Chun-Ho Chan, Archives of Environmental Health, 52(5): 360. 1997.
Effects of luminous environment on worker productivity in building spaces. Abdou, Ossama A. Journal of Architectural Engineering, 3(Sept.): 124-132. 1997.
Environmental chamber for investigation of building envelope performance. Fazio, Paul, Andreas K. Athienitis, and Cedric Marsh, Journal of Architectural Engineering, 3(June): 97-102. 1997.
Eurosprawl. Marshall, Alex. Metropolis. 1995.
Experimental investigation of solar chimney assisted bioclimatic architecture. Kumar, Sanjay, S. Sinha and N. Kumar, Energy Conversion and Management, 39(Mar./Apr.): 441-444. 1998.
Georgia Setting Up Tough Anti-Sprawl Agency. Firestone, D. The New York Times. March 24, 1999.
IAQ: Whose responsibility? Levin, Hal, EPA Journal, Fall 1993.
If You Build it, They will Come. Chen, D. Progress. March 1998.
Indicators of Urban Sprawl. Oregon's Department of Land Conservation and Development. 1992.
Indoor air pollution: acute adverse health effects and host susceptibility. Zummo, Susan M. and Meryl H. Karol, Journal of Environmental Health, 58(Jan./Feb.): 25-29. 1996.
Indoor air quality investigation protocols. Greene, Robert E. and Phillip L. Williams, Journal of Environmental Health, 59(October): 6-13. 1996.
The indoor air we breathe: a public health problem of the 90’s. Oliver, L. Christine and Bruce W. Shackleton, Public Health Reports, 113(5): 398. 1998.
Indoor dynamic climatology: investigations on the interactions between walls and indoor environment. Camuffo, Dario, Atmospheric Environment, 17(9): 1803-1809. 1983.
Interview: Rome, sustainable city. Sachs-Jeanet, Celine. International Social Science Journal, 48(March): 103-106. 1996.
Investigating sick buildings: No obvious sources of contaminants are found. Leaderer, Brian, EPA Journal, Fall 1993.
Metropolis Unbound - The Sprawling American City and the Search for Alternatives. Geddes, R. The American Prospect. Nov/Dec. 1997.
Modeling the indoor environment. Austin, Barbara S., Stanley M. Greenfield, and Bruce R. Weir. Environmental Science and Technology, 26(May): 850-858. 1992.
The Natural Step Takes a First Step in the US. Environmental Building News. 1996.
The Next Industrial Revolution McDonough, William & Braungart, M. The Atlantic Monthly, 282(4). 1998.
On the energy consumption and indoor air quality in office and hospital buildings in Athens. Argiriou, A, D. Asimakopoulos and C. Balaras. Energy Conservation and Management, 35(May): 385-394. 1994.
Organic emissions from consumer products and building materials to the indoor environment. Tichenor, Bruce A. and Mark A. Mason, JAPCA, 38(March):264-268. 1988.
Pedestrian paradise. Durning, Alan Thein, Sierra, 82(May/June): 36-39. 1997.
The Politics of Smart Growth. Orski, C. K. Innovation Briefs. 10(2). Mar/Apr 1999.
Prove It: The Costs and Benefits of Sprawl. Gordon, P. and H.W. Richardson. In Brookings Review. The New Metropolitan Agenda. 1998.
Restructuring the City: Thoughts on Urban Patterns in the Information Society. Friedman, Ken. 1996.
Revisiting urban habitats: The human face of the urban environment. Satterthwaite, David, Proceedings of the second annual world bank conference on environmentally sustainable development. Environment, 38(November): 25-28. 1996.
RITE: Research Institute of Innovative Technology for the Earth. Kondo, Jiro, Endeavour, 18(4): 154-157. 1994.
Sick building litigation raises stakes for insurers. McGowan, Owen P., Best’s Review – Property-Casualty Insurance Edition, 97(6): 112. 1996.
Sick building syndrome. O’Connell, Linda Matys, E, 6(1): 20. 1995.
Suburban Sprawl-Can we do anything about it? Orski, C. K. Innovation Briefs. 10(1). Jan/Feb 1999.
Sustainable cities: oxymoron, utopia, or inevitability? Blassingame, Lurton, The Social Science Journal, 35(1): 1-13. 1998.
The sustainable city. Gangloff, Deborah, American Forests, 101(May/June): 30-34. 1995.
Textile wall materials and sick building syndrome. Jaakkola, Jouni J.K., Pekka Tuomaala, and Olli Seppanen, Archives of Environmental Health, 49(3): 175. 1994.
To Engineer the Metropolis: Sewers, Sanitation, and City Planning in Late-Nineteenth-Century America. Schultz, Stanley K. and Clay McShane. The Journal of American History, 65(2): 389-411. 1978.
The view from Congress: we can no longer overlook the indoors. Waxman, Henry A., EPA-Journal, 19(Oct./Dec.): 38-39. 1993.
Water management and urban development. Niemczynowicz, Janusz, Impact of science on society, 166: 131-147. 1992.
Who pays for sprawl? Hidden subsidies fuel the growth of the suburban fringe. Longman, Philip J. U.S. News & World Report. 1998.
American Institute of Architects
American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE)
American Society of Heating, Refrigerating, and Air Conditioning Engineers (ASHRAE)
Architecture & Building Links
Built Environment Center
The Centre for Sustainable Design
Civil Engineering Research Foundation (CERF/IIEC)
Community Eco-Design Network (CEN)
Design-Build Institute of America
East St. Louis Research Project
Urban planning, architecture and design schools all conduct research and outreach in East St. Louis in order to revitalize the neighborhoods, promote community-based development
Eco-Home Network: ecological housing & sustainable development
Ecological Design Center
Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy Network, US Department of Energy
Environ Design Collaborative
Great Lakes Environmental Finance Center
Green Building Information Council
Institution of Civil Engineers
McDonough Braungart Design Chemistry
National Institute of Building Sciences (NIBS)
Northwestern University Infrastructure Technology Institute (ITI)
Smart Communities Network
Sprawl Watch Clearinghouse
Sustainable Design, Green Building, Energy Efficiency & Healthy Homes Books
United States Department of Housing and Urban Development
Urban Ecology: Rebuilding our cities in balance with nature
Driving Forces - The Automobile, Its Enemies, and the Politics of Mobility. Dunn, J.A. Brookings Institution Press. Washington, D.C. 1998.
Making the Connections: Integrating Land-Use and Transportation for Livable Cities. 1000 Friends of Oregon. Volume 7. 1997.
Technology and the Rise of the Networked City in Europe and America, Tarr, Joel A. and Dupuy, Gabriel. Temple University Press, Philadelphia. 1988.
Applying the brakes: environmental movement and the automobile. Kay, Jane Holtz. The Nation, 251(8): 280. 1990.
Cars and their enemies. Wilson, James Q. Commentary, July 1997: 17-23.
Civil engineering information from ASCE: the civil engineering database. Poland, Jean, DATABASE, 15(5): 56. 1992.
Environmental Implications of Electric Cars. Lave, Lester, Chris Hendrickson, and Francis McMichael. Science 268 May. 1995.
Hypercars: Materials, Manufacturing, and Policy Implications. Moffatt, I. The Parthenon Publishing Group, New York. 1995.
Station Cars: Personal Mobility with Reduced Cost. Bernard, Martin. On the Ground 1(3), Summer. 1995.
Car Free Cities
Center for Urban Transportation Research, University of South Florida
Highway Innovation Technology Evaluation Center (HITEC)
Institute of Transportation Engineers (ITE)
International Center for Technology Assessment
Partners for Advanced Transit and Highways (PATH), University of California, Berkeley
The Partnership for Advancing Technologies in Housing (PATH)
Housing finance and urban infrastructure finance. Kim, Kyung-Hwan. Urban Studies, Vol. 34. Edinburgh: October 1997, pp. 1597-1620.
Environment, economy in Garden State. Brekke, Rhea. Forum for Applied Research and Public-Policy. 11, Winter. 1996
Time is now for hoteliers to help shape U.S. tourism policy Gatty, Bob and Cecelia Blalock. Hotel & Motel Management. 1996.
Amazing Grace: The Lives of Children and the Conscience of a Nation. Kozol, Jonathan. New York: Harper Perennial, 1995.
Beyond Growth: The Economics of Sustainable Development. Daly, Herman E. Beacon Press Books. 1997.
Development Aid: The Poor Women’s Perspective: A Synopsis. Jhabvala, Renana. Ahmedabad, India: Self-Employed Women’s Association.
Development in Theory and Practice. Black, Jan Knippers. Boulder: Westview Press, 1991.
Dilemmas of Urban Economic Development: Issues in Theory and Practice. Bingham, Richard D., and Robert Mier (eds.). Thousand Oaks, California: Sage Publications, 1997.
Economics and Development. Ingham, Barbara. New York: McGraw Hill Book Company, 1995.
Economic Development in the Third World, 4th ed. Todaro, Michael P. New York: Longman Inc., 1989.
The Economics of Developing Countries, 2nd ed. Nafziger, E. Wayne. New Jersey: Prentice Hall, 1990.
Global Environmental Politics. Porter, Gareth and Janet Welsh Brown. Boulder, Colorado: Westview Press, 1991.
Industrialization in the Non-Western World, 2nd ed. Kemp, Tom. Essex, England: Longman Group Limited, 1989.
Local Economic Development: Analysis and Practice. Blair, John P. Thousand Oaks, California: Sage Publications, 1995.
Microfinance for the Poor? Schneider, Hartmut. (ed.) Paris, France: Development Centre of the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development, 1997.
Our Urban Future: New Paradigms for Equity and Sustainability. Badshah, Akhtar A. St. Martin's Press. 1996.
Preparing for the Twenty-first Century. Kennedy, Paul. Toronto: HarperCollins Publishers, Ltd., 428 pages. 1993.
Poverty Reduction Handbook. The World Bank. Washington, DC: 1993.
Progress for a Small Planet. Ward, Barbara. London: Earthscan Publications Ltd., 1987.
Promoting Environmentally Sound Economic Progress: What the North Can Do. Repetto, Robert C. World Resources Institute. January 1990.
Urban Land Economics and Public Policy, 5th ed. Balchin, Paul N., Gregory H. Bull, and Jeffrey L. Kieve. Great Britain: Macmillan Press Ltd., 1995.
Urban Land Economic Development: Issues in Theory and Practice. Bingham, Richard D. and Mier, Robert. Sage Publications, Thousand Oaks, California. 1997.
Urban Policy and Economic Development: An Agenda for the 1990s. World Bank. 1995.
Vital Signs 1996: The Trends That Are Shaping Our Future. Brown, Lester R., Christopher Flavin, and Hal Kane. New York: Worldwatch Institute, 1996.
Foundation for International Community Assistance (FINCA)
International Monetary Fund
Local Economic Development and Poverty Alleviation
The National Environmental Health Association
The Hixon Center offers opportunities to students and faculty interested in research, internships, scholarships or career options in Urban Forestry or related fields. The following listings provide up-to-date information with regard to:
Grant Awards in Urban Ecology: Call for Proposals
Five to seven grant awards ranging from $5,000 - $7,000 are available to Yale FES students interested in conducting natural and social science research, education & outreach projects for the following topic areas:
In the fall 2013 term, students must take a 3-credit project course to complete their research/project manuscript. Projects must be completed by mid-December 2013. The award will be provided in 3 installments: 50% upon acceptance of the proposal; 25% upon enrollment in the project course in September; and the final 25% upon completion of the project course, and receipt of an abstract and of a minimum 10-page final report (which will be published on the Hixon website).
Applicants are strongly encouraged to attend the 2012 Hixon Fellow presentations on Monday March 4th at 4:00 p.m. in Sage 41C.
URI Community Forester Internship Description
The Yale/Urban Resources Initiative (Yale/URI) is offering seven community forester internship opportunities with the New Haven/Urban Resources Initiative (New Haven/URI) for the summer of 2013.
New Haven/URI, in collaboration with the Community Foundation for Greater New Haven (CFGNH), and with the Livable City Initiative (LCI), is implementing a city-wide Community Greenspace Program. URI's goal for this program is to foster community forestry stewardship through environmental restoration projects. URI seeks to work with community members to stabilize their neighborhoods through community driven environmental restoration projects, which provide an opportunity to unite neighborhoods socially while improving the biophysical environment.
New Haven's Community Forestry program is conducted in cooperation with a variety of city agencies – LCI (a housing based agency), the Department of Parks, Recreation and Trees, and the Department of Public Works. The Community Greenspace Program encourages neighborhood organizations to undertake community-based, public as well as private stewardship efforts. Depending upon community interests and applications to this program, projects will include street tree plantings, park improvement projects, conversion of abandoned lots to “pocket” parks, as well as planting activities on private properties.
New Haven/URI seeks to hire seven community foresters for the summer of 2013. The interns’ role in the Greenspace Program is to provide both technical and material support to communities. The exact nature of the work will depend upon the needs outlined in applications submitted by communities to the CFGNH. The community forestry interns will likely: train community members in conducting a neighborhood inventory, species choices, site selection, site preparation (including soil testing, erosion control measures, and enrichment through addition of compost), design for desired function/outcomes, tree maintenance (insect control, watering, mulching, pruning, etc), and planting methods. Training sessions will be conducted in small community workshops, as well as individual or small group activities.
During the spring semester, interns will participate in training events provided by faculty, staff and outside professionals to gain skills needed for working effectively in the community. Training events will include topics such as community forestry methods, soil remediation, landscape design, and habitat plantings. With this skill base interns will begin working with community groups and test techniques (key informant interviews, observational studies) in order to gain familiarity with the community they will work in for the duration of the summer.
Qualifications: Skills in community organizing, participatory forestry, and restoration ecology are highly desired. However, most important is a willingness to engage citizens, work hard alongside them, and maintain a positive spirit in difficult conditions. Because community forestry requires input from representatives of many different organizations, an ability to work with varied organizations and individuals is essential. As documentation is an integral component of this project, excellent communication and writing skills are required.
URI Community Forester Internship Details
Transportation: All URI interns will share the use of URI vehicles. If it is necessary to drive personal vehicles for business purposes, interns will be reimbursed for business miles.
Other Requirements: Interns must have a valid driver's license. Interns also must have current permission to drive Yale vehicles. Interns must have the ability to work Tues-Sat for the full summer schedule. See below.
Length of Employment: May 7 - August 10 (13 weeks full time) -- The one week of vacation is July 1-8.
Deadline for Application: March 22, 2013 Optional 90-minute Friday trainings begin on April 5.
Send a letter of intent and resume to: Colleen Murphy-Dunning, Director, Urban Resources Initiative or Chris Ozyck, URI Associate Director (Students may email applications or hand deliver their applications to the URI office at 301 Prospect Street, 1st floor).
HIXON CENTER SUMMER 2013 YALE SWALE INTERNSHIP DESCRIPTION
Working with Yale faculty and Facilities staff, two Hixon Center interns will support the development of a plan for the ecological restoration of the Yale wetland also known as the “Yale Swale” located on campus. The plan will detail strategies (including timeline and stages of work) for the comprehensive restoration of the Yale Swale site. Goals include enhancing habitat, improving capacity to capture stormwater, enhancing water quality, and serving as an educational resource and demonstration site for the Universities education undergraduate and master’s professional programs and the surrounding community. In addition to addressing ecological restoration, concerns of security, aesthetics, social constraints, and ease of management must be considered.
The swale will reflect Yale’s vision to create a living laboratory on campus by providing opportunities for education, research, and experimentation. The site can be used for course instruction and real world experimentation and can be used to educate and train incoming FES students during MODs.
Development of the plan will require interns to gather data on vegetation, animals, and hydrology to characterize the site. Students will also collect information from city agencies to evaluate existing hydrologic infrastructure (e.g., stormwater conveyances). Students may also interact with the few private property owners with inholdings in the swale. It is expected that interns will also help plan a tentative vision and to begin the first phase of site restoration. Site work might include invasive species removal, trail development, installation of hydrologic measurement systems, and the potential creation of educational signage.
QUALIFICATIONS: Ideal candidates will have broad knowledge of environmental sciences including plants, animals, hydrology, soils, and chemistry. They will be able to work on multiple tasks, have good people skills, and be willing to perform some hard physical labor.
Stipend: Timeframe is 3 months in the summer with some flexibility on start and end date. Hourly rate is $16.00
TO APPLY: SEND A LETTER OF INTENT, AND RESUME TO:
2009 Urban Fellow Justin Freiberg's short film about the Urban Foodshed Collaborative.
Following are brief project descriptions and research paper links for the 2000 through 2010 fellows.
Due to shortcomings in traditional methods for detecting and quantifying the presence of fecal waste in waters new methodologies are being explored, with special attention being given to the ability to identify sources of the contamination. In this study, an alternative methodology, which uses Real-Time Polymerase Chain Reaction (RT-PCR) to detect host specific genetic markers to distinguish between human and non-human sources of contamination, was applied to beaches in Connecticut that were experiencing various levels of contamination. Despite some difficulties with this new approach, it was ultimately useful for identifying waste of human origin. Though not quantitative, this study qualitatively provided important baseline information for further studies by indicating beaches to target for more in-depth tracking procedures to detect and correct these human sources impacting the contaminated waters.
This study is one of a growing number that seeks to address materials flows and management options from the scale of each building material type, up to the whole building, and further up to the range of buildings in an entire city – in this case, New Haven, Connecticut. Solid waste generated in the removal or renovation of buildings is a massive and often poorly described waste stream. Construction and demolition waste (C&D) is also largely unregulated in its quantity and composition, if not its disposal fate. Buildings are large, complex, and highly varied objects, and their component materials differ by building type, construction cohort, size, style, and many, many other factors. Reducing the solid waste generated in building removal and renovation, recouping building material for reuse or recycling, preventing some of the greenhouse gas emissions associated with C&D disposal, shifting jobs towards construction laborers, and reducing costs are all goals of deconstruction, a source separation building removal technique. A dynamic systems model was built using a bottom up approach to accounting for the building material flows in New Haven. Several scenarios for different waste management options were tested over a 25 year time horizon to evaluate the relative advantages and disadvantages in terms of waste diverted from landfill, greenhouse gas emissions, cost, and jobs created of each of the scenarios. The model was also provided to City of New Haven policy-makers to use as a building waste management tool.
The sulfur dioxide (SO2) cap and trade program established in the 1990 Clean Air Act Amendments is celebrated for reducing abatement costs ($0.7 to $2.1 billion per year) by allowing emissions allowances to be traded. Unfortunately, places with high marginal costs also tend to have high marginal damages. Ton for ton trading reduces emissions in low damage areas (rural) while increasing emissions in high damage areas (cities). From 2000 to 2007, conservative estimates of the value of mortality risk suggest that trades increased damages from $0.8 to $1.1 billion annually relative to the initial allowance allocation and from $1.5 to $1.9 billion annually relative to a uniform performance standard. With USEPA values, trades increased damages from $2.4 to $3.2 billion annually compared to the initial allowance allocation and from $4.4 to $5.4 billion compared to a uniform performance standard. It is not clear that the ton for ton SO2 cap and trade program is actually more efficient than comparable command and control programs. The trading program needs to be modified so that tons are weighted by their marginal damage.
My report, inspired by the work of a non-profit organization in Washington, D.C. that seeks to promote social revitalization through environmental restoration, offers recommendations for the development of green roof subsidy and promotional programs targeting Washington D.C.’s underserved communities. I used results from sewer system modeling, academic studies on green roof performance, and thermal satellite imaging to identify areas of the District that would benefit most from the stormwater and cooling benefits green roofs provide. Lessons learned from first-hand involvement in past green roof subsidy programs inform my recommendations on how future programs could more effectively serve underprivileged communities. While the recommendations are specifically intended to give rise to programs that will more strategically maximize the environmental and socioeconomic benefits of green roofs in Washington, D.C., many of the findings could have implications for organizations working towards similar goals in other urban areas.
Emily Stevenson: "Closing the Loop: Alternative Land Management at Yale"
Compost tea is a soil amendment often used as an organic alternative to synthetic nitrogen fertilizers. Compost tea is purported to increase soil microbial biomass and organic matter, creating a healthy and dynamic soil ecosystem that supports various ecosystem services. Healthy urban soils promote healthy vegetation, mitigate storm-water surges, improve nutrient cycling to minimize losses by leaching and run-off, and increase soil’s capacity for carbon storage. This research project established a pilot program on Yale University’s campus that assessed the above and below-ground responses to the use of compost tea versus the synthetic fertilizer and herbicide used under current management. Soil samples taken from twelve experimental plots located across the university’s campus were analyzed to assess microbial community response to the alternative land management program. Compost tea application took place over a twelve week period in Fall 2010; soil microbial biomass and catabolic evenness were measured across the treatment timeline to see how microbial communities differentiated under the different treatments. The tea applications effected microbial dynamics, but not as hypothesized. Compost tea treatments showed relative decreases in microbial biomass and catabolic evenness when compared to soils under current treatment. This study, after just 12 weeks of treatment, provides an early look into the dynamics of shifting soil communities under differing treatments.
Excess phosphorus inputs to Lake Champlain are causing unwanted algal growth resulting in decreased lake water transparency, odor, and reduced dissolved oxygen levels, while the presence of pathogen-indicating bacteria in the lake cause occasional beach closings. This has implications for both recreational and drinking water uses of the lake. It has been determined that non-point sources of phosphorus, mostly from surface runoff, are responsible for 80% of the phosphorus inputs to Lake Champlain, mostly from agricultural runoff. Pathogenic bacteria are also associated with agricultural runoff – particularly from livestock operations. Simple, low-cost technologies for phosphorus and pathogen removal from stormwater and agricultural wastewater are needed. One such technology is an on-site, combined constructed wetland-EAF steel slag filter system.
The past few years have witnessed a proliferation of studies using spatial metrics to examine spatial structure of land cover change. Urban analysts are no exception, applying landscape metrics to study and model patterns of urban growth. While the majority of this research examines emerging urban structures by measuring changes in their aggregate forms, these spatial patterns are often dominated by stable regions at the urban core. This study proposes the direct measurement of discrete changes across the urban landscape, testing the technique through a comparative assessment of aggregate and discrete land cover changes across seven classified Landsat images from China’s Pearl River Delta. The study presents results on area and compactness metrics computed with Fragstats 3.3 software, which reveal distinct trends between two complimentary methods. Analysis of this data suggests a potential role for discrete pattern analysis as a compliment to aggregate change analysis, particularly suited to detecting and characterizing process dynamics involved in urban expansion.
Urban street trees face adverse growing conditions: compacted soils, extreme heat, lack of nutrients, drought, car damage and vandalism. Limited funding, however, is cited by urban tree-planting organizations as their major obstacle. To maximize budgets, many organizations along the eastern United States have planted bare root trees as a less expensive alternative to balled-and-burlapped (B&B) trees. Existing research indicates equivalent survival rates between bare root and B&B trees; but no research has examined this in community group-planted urban street trees. Bare root trees are additionally advantageous in community-based plantings because they are much lighter and easier for volunteers to handle. This study evaluated the influence of stock and other site factors on street tree survival and growth measures (diameter at breast height, percent canopy cover, and percent live crown), while controlling for species and age. Site factors included street traffic intensity, site type (curbside, park, yard, or commercial corridor),wound presence, and sidewalk pit cut dimensions. 1159 trees (representing ten species) planted by Philadelphia community groups under the guidance of the Pennsylvania Horticultural Society from 2006-2009 were sampled. Overall, trees showed a high survival rate of 95%, with no significant difference between B&B and bare root trees. Species with the highest survival rates were Prunus virginiana (chokecherry), Platanus x acerifolia (London plane tree), and Acerginnala (Amur maple). Heavily trafficked streets exhibited lower survival, percent canopy cover and percent live crown. Larger growth measures were expected and found in B&B trees, as they have historically been planted larger than their bare root counterparts. Findings support planting larger trees (such as B&B and/or larger bare root trees) along commercial corridors. Species in the Rosaceae family (Amelanchier spp., Malus spp, and Prunus virginiana) exhibited lower percents canopy cover. Wound presence and pit cut size were not major factors affecting the 1-5year old street trees sampled in this study. The major management implication of these findings is that bare root trees are a viable alternative to B&B trees in community-based urban forestry initiatives. Tree-planting campaigns with similar climactic conditions to Philadelphia can use this study to inform selection of stock and species.
Justin Freiberg: "The Urban Foodshed Collaborative"
The Urban Foodshed Collaborative (UFC) aims to provide a space and structure for New Haven youth and Yale FES students to connect to the potential of the land around them right in New Haven, and to realize the potential in local, collaborative solutions. It does so through the transformative act of growing food within an entrepreneurial model. I founded UFC in the spring of 2009 in response to a number of trends that I hoped would allow it to succeed: the desire of restaurants and markets to source locally-produced, community-enhancing produce, the many vacant lots that could be turned into productive space, and importantly, the continued need for urban youth to have valuable experiences that also pay a deserved wage. This paper examines the first summer of work of UFC, looking at some of the groups we partnered with, some of the lessons learned, and of course, the context in which it was founded. Alternative solutions to new challenges illuminated during this first summer of work will be evaluated. Further, I have developed a guidebook that will be used to welcome in the next generation of urban farmers to the Urban Foodshed Collaborative. Website: urbanfoodshed.org.
Lauren Adams: "Perceived and Actual Urban Water Quality Risks"
Ubiquitous non-point source (NPS) pollution is a dominant cause of biogeophysical degradation in urban catchment systems, the residual effects of which damage community health, safety and property values. Remediation of water resources contaminated by NPS requires both political participation as well as scientific information, particularly for drinking water supply sources, where the human impacts of NPS pollution are more acutely realized. To better understand the relationship between the demand for clean water and the supply of scientific education and information, my research compared actual and perceived pollution risks within the urban Mill River watershed in New Haven, Connecticut to determine the magnitude and characteristics of the watershed’s manufactured risk. The preliminary results from this study found that people have a difficult time describing their local water supplies both at the source and from the tap and that a general lack of interest in and understanding of the mechanistic links between watershed, human and ecosystem health prevails, despite people’s intense preference for the trusted delivery of clean water supplies within their urban homes.
My research grant from the Hixon Center allowed me to spend the summer exploring the motivations and resources for sustaining neighborhood level urban ecological stewardship activities in the Madison/East-End, Southwest Baltimore and Pigtown communities of Baltimore City. Using the ethnographic methods of semi-structured interviews, oral history and participant observation, I gathered qualitative data from community members and institutional informants on past and present urban ecological stewardship projects in these three communities. I sought to supplement the on-going research findings of the larger-scale Baltimore Ecosystem Study and the Stewardship Mapping and Assessment Project by contributing a richer understanding of what motivates urban stewards to initiate neighborhood-scale projects and what resources, both material and social, they depend upon to sustain them. My final paper includes both a typology of motivations for neighborhood-level stewardship and an analysis of the social and funding networks built around and depended upon by stewards in these neighborhoods.
Haley Gilbert: "East Rock Park: Inside and Out"
East Rock Park: Inside and Out is an interactive web based project empowering local communities to map how they use a local park – East Rock Park. The website was created to explore emerging community mapping technologies and uses like neogeography. Since the introduction of geobrowsers, like Google Maps, the layperson has been empowered to create and share spatial information over the internet with ease. This project examines community mapping trends, the technologies associated with neogeography, and details the process of creating the Inside and Out website. Can community groups or neighbors band together to apply these technologies to map their communities and local ecosystems? Experience from the website and research supports the position that the technologies are easier to use, the financial investments have been reduced, and people are actively engaging with these types of interactive mapping websites. In conclusion, community groups and neighbors can create, engage and utilize interactive mapping websites. However, more research still needs to be conducted to learn if groups are using these sites to improve, enhance, or protect their communities and/or local ecosystems.
Helen McMillan: "Urbanization of New England Wetlands: Evaluating the Effects on Pond-Breeding Amphibians"
Urbanization often causes wetland loss and alteration, which can have significant effects on amphibian populations that utilize wetlands for breeding and adult habitat. Reduced connectivity and density of ponds, alteration of the surrounding terrestrial habitat, and changes to the chemical, physical or biological characteristics of wetlands may all be possible contributors to decreases in amphibian populations. This study evaluated these potential causes of decline on two species of tree frogs in Connecticut: the gray tree frog (Hyla versicolor) and the spring peeper (Pseudacris crucifer). I surveyed 30 ponds located along an urbanization gradient in the Salmon River watershed of eastern Connecticut during the spring/summer of 2008. Many pond characteristics, such as salinity and the presence of fish, showed clear differences with increased urbanization. In contrast to other studies, I found amphibian diversity to be highest in suburban areas, likely due to the combination of more permanent ponds that many species require and the relatively close proximity to forested areas. However the factors that best predicted amphibian density varied with each species, indicating that in order to effectively protect amphibians a variety of habitats need to be protected.
Norio Takaki: "Municipal Waste Management in Two Brazilian Cities"
The present work compares municipal waste management practices in two Brazilian cities in terms of their potential as mechanisms for the social inclusion of trash pickers. The Federal District, home to the Capital, is taking measures to implement an integrated waste management program that aims to improve recycling rates through curbside collection of separated recyclables and support the work of trash pickers through the creation of cooperatives. In contrast, the city of Porto Alegre has had such a program since 1990 and thereby constitutes a valuable reference framework for Brasília. The comparison focuses on the advances Brasilia’s cooperatives have achieved as well as the obstacles they face to establish themselves structurally and administratively. Some of the more important lessons learned from this investigation come from the recognition that Porto Alegre’s program, despite its near twenty-year experience, has not contributed significantly to the social inclusion of trash pickers, neither in terms of income nor in terms of effecting operational and financial self-sufficiency amongst cooperatives. Since the situation in Brasilia is still in a process of incubation, local stakeholders and institutions could use Porto Alegre’s case as a cautionary example of the potential political and economic pitfalls facing the emerging system of cooperatives.
Gerald Bright analyzed how an instream habitat restoration application affects both instream flow variability and habitat quality for invertebrates, on the main stem of Pennypack Creek in Philadelphia, PA. Often, restoration applications are completed without a full understanding of process and violate the dimension, pattern and profile of a stable river. Using River2D, a two-dimensional (2D) hydrodynamic model, Gerald modeled natural and modified instream hydraulic conditions at a range of discharges to test for differences in hydraulic conditions and habitat suitability. Analysis of model outputs from River2D yields promising conclusions as to the utility of modeling the effects instream habitat restoration structures. The ability of 2D hydrodynamic models to resolve spatial variability in hydraulic conditions can provide opportunities for their use in making predictions about hydraulic conditions in systems with altered flow regimes. Conditions present in impacted urban systems could support the use of 2D models in the development of watershed management strategies given the influence of anthropogenic and land-use effects on flow regimes and habitat quality.
Steven P. Brady: "Wetlands in disturbed landscapes support higher avian biodiversity"
Steve Brady examined the distribution of wetland dependent birds across three types of land cover: urban/ suburban, agricultural, and forest. Many studies indicate the negative consequences of habitat conversion on native wildlife, however recent investigations suggest that some species may respond positively to human dominated landscapes. While the negative response of forest songbirds to land development is well documented, the response of wetland dependent birds is less known. Steve conducted this research in the CT River Valley and the Yale Forest in Union, CT. He used point count surveys to record bird abundance and diversity at each of 16 wetlands. His findings indicate that wetlands in human dominated landscapes support larger and more diverse communities of birds. These results suggest that the response of wildlife to land conversion is context dependent, and that human dominated landscapes may offer opportunities for conservation of wetland dependent birds.
Jen Lewis conducted her research with support from The United Nations Human Settlements Programme in Mexico. She focused on land tenure legalization and service provision in peri-urban communities in Mexico. She worked in Xalapa, Veracruz developing criteria for future initiatives that link legalization and service provision processes. Key elements of this initiative included a comprehensive study of historical land use planning, environmental indicators, and political processes for property rights and services. Ultimately, the results of this research project offer an initial historical review of land rights and planning programs in Mexico. An additional outcome is an innovative proposal for sustainable development in peri-urban communities of growing cities as well as an academic analysis of current urban land use policy in Mexico.
Ali Senauer evaluated and is currently testing a novel method, based on global positioning system (GPS) technology, to better understand children’s exposure to their outdoor physical environment in urban areas. Through numerous studies and the development and application of new tools and techniques over the past several decades, we have become acutely aware of the direct linkage between non-human organisms’ distribution, health, and survival and the quality, quantity, and spatial distribution of their habitat. Unfortunately, while there has been increasing emphasis on understanding non-human organisms and their habitat needs, there has been relatively little focus on understanding human habitat needs. Ali is interested in using GPS technology to advance our understanding in this area. Towards this end, she evaluated a number of commercially available GPS instruments and is currently developing a custom unit to meet her research needs. This work will directly inform and advance Ali’s dissertation research, which is focused on understanding how the structure of children’s physical environment impacts their experiences and health.
Brenna Vredeveld examined how specific economic, social, political and biophysical variables motivate or hinder urban growth in Quito, Ecuador’s second largest city. Specifically, she focused on understanding the influence of these variables in three peri-urban communities located in two important watersheds southeast of the city. The three communities represent a gradient of urban development defined by presence of formal infrastructure. In order to understand historical growth trends in these areas, Brenna conducted interviews with community leaders as well as with regional urban planning and environmental departments. She also used community surveys and an informal GIS analysis to observe changing demographies and associated land covers in order to gauge the importance of biophysical variables on urban growth. Overall, she found that the contribution of each variable to urban growth varies across the three communities. In addition, land cover changes are often influenced by the effectiveness of planning policies, the attraction of markets, opportunities for livelihoods and resource availability.
The increasing threat of emerging infectious diseases in both wildlife and humans has spurred interest in the causes of disease emergence, including the role of anthropogenic change. A prior field study of infection patterns in amphibians suggests that echinostome infection may be an emerging disease of green frogs, Rana clamitans, living in urbanized environments. We examined the impact of echinostome infection on green frog tadpoles at a wide range of developmental stages (Gosner stage 25–39). Echinostome infection was associated with green frog mortality rates of up to 40% in an early developmental stage, and none in later developmental stages. Tadpoles exposed to higher echinostome doses exhibited higher edema rates, a potential sign of compromised renal function. Histopathological analysis further supported the hypothesis that echinostome-induced tadpole mortality resulted from compromised renal function. Given that the timing of highest cercarial shedding can coincide with the most vulnerable stages of green frog tadpole development, echinostomes could significantly impact green frog survival in nature.
It has been suggested that reductions in nitrogen loading to estuaries should be accomplished by implementing watershed specific programs that target the dominant nitrogen sources. The area surrounding Long Island Sound has been intensively developed and the watersheds contributing water and nutrients to the Sound are subject to a variety of density in urbanization. The loading of nutrients due to urban development to the Sound is influenced by urban infrastructure and the density of human populations and their associated activities. Efficient management of water quality in urban systems requires the identification of elements that contribute most to the loading of various pollutants. Caffeine is unique to sewage sources in the Northern Hemisphere, and could be used as a tracer for sewage contamination and evaluation of landscape elements which contribute to nitrogen loading via sewage effluent. I measured caffeine concentration in a fresh watershed along an urban-rural gradient which exhibited a variety in development intensity and infrastructure connection. Caffeine was detected and resolved a pattern that increased with urban density and correlated to other water quality parameters. The evaluation of caffeine as a tracer for sewage contamination as well as a tool for understanding how urban landscapes contribute nutrients to the environment is promising but requires further study.
Urban water management has specific institutional challenges that must be addressed in order to improve freshwater access in developing countries. This paper uses case studies from the Philippines to address the political and regulatory barriers that hinder improvements to water services. The central aim is to move past the typical public versus private debate that has dominated international discussions about investment and management of water utilities over the last two decades. The paper describes the scope of the water access problems, examines the need to move past ideology in water management decisions, provides case study examples to illustrate relevant issues, suggests context-specific factors that must be considered, and develops suggestions for policy approaches to reform. The main conclusions are that decision makers need to consult with a broader spectrum of stakeholders when undertaking water sector reform, better understand the local context and existing water provision systems before enacting new regulations and structures, draw on theories and experiences of institutional organization to find context-appropriate systems for water resources, and increase transparency, accountability, and flexibility in governance.
Mohamad A. Chakaki: "Can Tears and Blood Sprout Olive Trees?"
Mohamad A. Chakaki (MEM ’06) traveled to Syria where he worked in "Neirab Camp," a Palestinian refugee camp. Mohamad went to Neirab to help introduce sustainability to the camps, which were designed as temporary refuges but have evolved into more permanent homes. Mohamad worked for the UNRWA, the United Nations Agency for Palestinian Refugees. He discovered that developing greenspaces in such a complex environment was a challenge. Questions of "home," ownership and identity are not clearly answered in Neirab, whose residents have always thought of themselves as visitors and yearn for their home in Palestine. Mohamad attempted to untangle how to speak with the refugees about environmental sustainability when there are so many other priorities.
Joel Creswell: "Mercury Concentrations in an Urbanized Watershed"
Joel Creswell (MESc ’06) analyzed water samples from four streams in the three main watersheds of the City of New Haven for mercury content. By analyzing streams in both forested and urbanized landscapes, Joel hoped to determine whether different land uses affected mercury concentrations in streams. Preliminary results show that mercury is inversely correlated with watershed urbanization under dry conditions. Joel expects storm data to show the opposite relationship. Joel’s research will help urban planners and stormwater managers understand the impacts of urban land use on the levels of mercury—a harmful pollutant—in streams.
Tomas Delgado (MEM ’06) focused his internship on improving the understanding of sustainable urban building. The low density "sprawling" neighborhoods that dominated building in the last decades of the 20th century are undesirable in terms of energy, land use, material use, and also in terms of less tangible factors like the lack of "sense of place" they promote among their inhabitants. By studying new designs, like that of downtown Mansfield, Connecticut, Tomas attempted to understand how rating systems like LEED® (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) can be used to evaluate the sustainability of urban design. By working on a new rating system, the "LAND code," being developed at Yale, Tomas worked to incorporate important aspects of land use not thoroughly considered using LEED®.
Rachel Gruzen (MEM’06) explored the complicated challenge of sustainable shrimp farming in Madagascar. Armed with a video camera, Rachel explored how the growing global demand for shrimp is affecting the diverse, pristine mangrove shorelines of the East African country. In her research, Rachel traced how the government and aquaculture companies are addressing the social wellbeing of their employees. She was especially interested in determining which factors—community development programming, town planning, partnership-building, and policy frameworks—are tending to encourage socially and environmentally sustainable shrimp farming in Madagascar. The result of Rachel’s work is a documentary.
Manja P. Holland: "Urbanization and the Impact of Emerging Disease on Amphibians"
Manja Holland (PhD Candidate) spent her summer investigating emerging disease in amphibians in Northeastern Connecticut. Emerging wildlife diseases are of concern both from conservation and human health perspectives, as many can be transferred between wildlife and people. Urbanization and other forms of anthropogenic change have been linked with increased emergence of wildlife disease, but the mechanisms underlying these patterns remain poorly understood. By understanding how echinostomes, a widespread amphibian macroparasite, impact green frogs (Rana clamitans), Manja hopes to contribute to the understanding of the mechanisms by which diseases, especially those that can be transferred to humans, can emerge as a result of urbanization.
Robyn Meeks: "Water Governance Programme"
Robyn Meeks (MEM ’05) worked at the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) Headquarters in New York City with the Water Governance Sub-Practice. The Water Governance Sub-Practice promotes sound and effective governance of water resources. In this capacity, Robyn assisted in activities pertaining to transboundary waters and integrated water resources management (IWRM). Studying IWRM, she researched the outcomes, lessons learned, and achievements of UNDP’s transboundary rivers initiative. Robyn participated in the planning of community stakeholder dialogues to empower and involve historically marginalized groups in decision-making proriver basin organizations. Each year the Hixon Center for Urban Ecology sponsors summer internships designed to encourage students at Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies to pursue projects that focus on increasing the understanding of urban ecosystems. During the summer of 2005, seven Hixon Fellows worked all over the world, from the streams of Connecticut to the refugee camps of Syria and the mangroves of Madagascar. Fellows studied topics as far ranging as amphibian disease, water governance and green building.
Amy Kimball: " If They Don’t Count, You Don’t Count"
Amy Kimball (MF ’05) worked with the Trust for Public Land in Washington, D.C. to conduct nationwide research on the user profile of urban park visitors. After speaking with park managers from around the country, she compiled a list of best practices for enumerating and understanding park users. Her findings concluded that surprisingly few urban park systems have a reliable and consistent method for assessing how many people frequent these public amenities. However, in the case of parks that count and communicate with their users, the data indicate the importance of these public spaces to cities. Amy’s findings will be incorporated into a larger Trust for Public Land project to assess the economic value of urban parks.
Emily Levin: "Water Wisdom"
Emily Levin (MEM '05) traveled to New Delhi, India to work with the Centre for Science and Environment. Her research addressed community-based water management in India’s urban and rural regions. Emily assisted with the design of rainwater harvesting systems for sites across New Delhi, a city that faces a crisis due to plummeting groundwater levels and an unreliable municipal water supply. She also documented case studies of decentralized wastewater treatment and recycling systems, which may help to reduce the discharge of untreated sewage to Delhi's Yamuna River. Lastly, she investigated the effectiveness of rural watershed programs in three arid states. This fall, Emily authored an article about using local water harvesting as an alternative to the development of large dams in the western Indian state of Gujarat.
Amy Shatzkin (MEM ’05) worked with the International Council of Local Environmental Initiatives to research the connection between smart growth measures and domestic greenhouse gas emissions. Under the auspices of the organization’s Cities for Climate Protection program, Amy developed a resource guide on sprawl and climate change for city government official and drafted the template for a municipal greenhouse gas protocol. In assessing the greenhouse gas inventory reports of 26 municipalities, she also found that green building design measures were the most frequently adopted and evaluated, while land use planning measures were the least frequently implemented and enumerated. Conducting greenhouse gas inventories allows planning officials to evaluate work towards reducing their community’s impact on global climate change while also assessing the efficacy of smart growth measures.
Daniel Stonington: "Essay on the Federal Role in Advancing Smart Growth"
Daniel Stonington (MEM ’05) conducted projects with the Growth Management Leadership Alliance (GMLA). The group is a network of leaders from state, provincial and regional organizations in the United States and Canada that carry out programs to directly shape and implement smart growth policies and actions. Dan researched current federal policies that directly effected land use decision-makers at state, regional, and local levels. He also worked to develop preliminary findings and conclusions for changing federal land use policies. Drawing on his research, Dan drafted an executive summary of findings to explain how the federal government should focus on strategies for communication and implementation of smart growth policies.
Jonathan Strunin: 2004 Internship Report
Jonathan Strunin (MEM ’05) created a variety of reports and online articles for InfoOakland, a small NGO based in Oakland, CA. The organization is dedicated to informing low-income groups and communities of color about resources and information available to them. Jonathan worked on the organization’s Oaktown Datahouse to facilitate citizen access to a variety of information about the city, to provide information about housing and redevelopment and to train residents about using these resources for advocacy campaigns.
Elena Traister (MESc ’05) spent the summer and fall of 2004 collecting and analyzing water samples from eleven sites throughout the Hoosic River Watershed in northwestern Massachusetts. Her research was undertaken to better understand the temporal and spatial patterns of bacterial fluctuation to better understand how riparian systems are impacted by bacterial pollution. Her preliminary findings indicate that diurnal and storm-related patterns of e.coli concentration exist in the watershed. Elena’s work will enhance the effectiveness of the methodologies used by water quality monitoring programs in the watershed, and improve the ability of these programs to deal with water quality issues in the future. Finally, her research will contribute to a broader understanding of the behavior of pollutants and their ecological effects on rivers over time.
Raji Dhital studied the rural-urban linkages in the agriculture market system between two villages and a city of Eastern Nepal. She studied the local and global forces that shape the agriculture market system, which have micro-level implications in the lives of rural farmers. In case of Nepal, some of the most important factors that affected the rural urban agriculture market were the land distribution, national policies of Nepal and trade relations with India- all of which are deeply connected with the political history of Nepal.
Margarita Fernandez: "Cultivating Community, Food, and Empowerment: Urban Gardens in New York City"
Margarita Fernandez’s research consisted of identifying the social benefits provided by community gardens. Working with Operation GreenThumb, who recommended the 10 research garden sites in the Melrose section of the South Bronx, Fernandez also ascertained the types of management schemes community leaders have developed to manage these community spaces.
Cindy Kushner: "Starting a Community Forestry Project in Greater Boston"
The Urban Ecology Institute’s most recent initiative, the Community Forest Partnership, is a partnership of several public and private organizations working to improve the urban forest. As the first intern for the Community Forester Program, Cindy Kushner worked with three well-established non-profit groups on a variety of projects. Each had its own goals, though all ultimately hoping to build environmental stewardship and a stronger community by improving the urban forest and motivating people to come together and work in ways they may not have in the past.
The paper discusses challenges, trends, and transitions in the urban environment field and offers an approach to meeting Millennium Development Goal (MDG) targets in water supply and sanitation in urban areas. It updates the author’s 1994 publication Urban Environmental Challenges: New Directions for Technical Assistance to Cities in Developing Countries, published by the World Resources Institute. This paper begins by describing governance, decentralization, and privatization trends and drawing lessons from international development experiences in cities in developing countries. It argues that pervasive governance problems have led to environmental service deficits, particularly amongst the poor,who, at the same time, have demonstrated tremendous ingenuity in obtaining for themselves what their municipalities have not provided. The paper examines the global urban environmental agenda through a review of summit meetings and key initiatives of major international development agencies.This review of the global agenda – from Rio to Johannesburg – leads to the judgment that the most important urban environmental challenges today are defined by the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs). It argues that meeting MDG targets related to poverty alleviation, access to water and sanitation, and improvements in the lives of slum dwellers will provide the greatest improvement to environmental quality in urban areas.
Called “a city on the environmental edge,” New Orleans has probably always seemed (to the outsider) to be both impossible and inevitable. New Orleans’ location in the highly productive but fragile deltaic plain of south Louisiana has proved to be of unparalleled strategic value throughout the city’s history, while at the same time defying human attempts to discipline the landscape. The following interrelated ecological factors affect the biophysical ecosystem of southern Louisiana: the Mississippi River trying to change course, land subsidence, coastal erosion, sea level rise, saltwater intrusion, a predicted increase in destruction from hurricanes, increased incidence and severity of flooding, and a spreading apoxic lesion in the Gulf of Mexico. Whether or not these factors can be treated is a question that will only be answered after billions of dollars are spent on restoration projects.
Austin Zeiderman: "Community Forestry in the Urban Environment: Some Lessons Learned in Baltimore, Maryland, 1989-2003"
The primary goal of the project was to contribute to the search for effective, efficient, and equitable ways to improve social and environmental conditions in inner-city neighborhoods. This 90-page document is too large to link it directly to this site. Please email us for a copy.
Olivia Carpenter: "Rainbows in the Puddles: A Covenant of Hope in Manifest Neglect"
Carpenter is studying the social ecology and environmental values surrounding a 40-acre park in Camden, NJ. She is using the park’s dilapidated state to illustrate the disconnect among planning, education and environmental agencies and services within the city.
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Edgerton is working with the Hamden, CT community to conduct a health study of the neighborhood across from Hamden Middle School. The school and neighboring community were built on soil contaminated by the landfill-borne waste from an ammunitions plant. While the school site had been the focus of attention, the community across the street and Vic’s work are now the subject of public interest.
William Finnegan: “Assessment of Hands-on Multi-media Environmental Education for Urban Adolescents in New Haven, Connecticut”
Finnegan is using his skills as a filmmaker to teach children how to document their environment and community. At the end of his environmental education/documentary filmmaking program, he will assess whether or not environmental education can change students‚ perceptions about the environment and whether or not those changes in perception will lead to changes in behavior.
Brian Goldberg: “Partnerships for Successful Urban Open Spaces”
Goldberg identifies the characteristics of successful urban open spaces, looks for such spaces in Bangkok, Thailand, finds that several of the spaces are partnerships, and then asks what makes those partnerships successful. He determines four key features that significantly contributed to each partnership’s effectiveness in the creation of successful urban open spaces, such as  secured land control by a landowner;  a top-down land allocation process;  a political champion; and,  resources provided by each partner. These findings provide guidance for officers of public agencies, communities and corporations who seek to partner with the private, government and, community sectors to create successful urban open spaces.
Javier González-Campaña: “From Promenade Plantée to the New York High Line”
Campaña is studying the development and architecture of the Promenade Platee in Paris, an abandoned raised railroad track converted into a park. This process and design reveals the potential for New York’s proposed High Line, a neglected elevated rail structure built in the 1930s on the West Side of Manhattan. He is comparing the architectural, economic, and natural aspects of both projects to assess the development potential of the High Line.
Menone worked with the Council on the Environment of New York City this summer to build databases and produce maps showing the relationship between community gardens and neighborhood demographics. His research will study the stewardship and effects of community gardens in the City.
Miller began his research at the Portland, Oregon office of sustainable development, where he studied issues of urban runoff and incentive programs to develop rainwater catchments. He then compared residential applications of these systems to the requirements of LEED guidelines, and is currently pursuing research into how both applications tie into human values of water.
Pascasio is studying the complexities of large-scale watershed planning and management. Her research uses a policy sciences methodology for “mapping the social context” to examine the conflict over the use of water resources within the watershed of the São Francisco River in Northeast Brazil. The methodology identifies participants and their perspectives in the debate over water use and is used as part of a larger process that seeks to develop public policies in a manner that promotes the common interest.
Shah is researching the establishment of a pricing system for reliable water services in Zanzibar Town on the island country of Zanzibar. His work will include using contingency valuation methods to evaluate government policy options for financing and managing public water supplies.
Catherine Ashcraft: “Water Quality in Sodom Brook”
Ashcraft tested water quality in Sodom Brook. This research was part of continuing studies of bacteria levels in tributaries of the Quinnipiac River. Her data showed that Sodom Brook regularly exceeds water quality standards for both fecal coliform and Escherichia coli, with a larger percent of exceedences occurring during wet flows. She concluded that due to these differences, an accurate sampling strategy would include both wet and dry flow data.
Camacho used epigaeic insect fauna to develop site evaluation criteria for urban lots based on conservation value. Camacho gathered data from various urban areas. He found that the slowest-dispersing insect species are the most vulnerable, and the most biologically diverse sites are those near urban natural areas.
Etre tracked vacant properties in urban areas. The reuse of urban vacant land can bring higher densities to the urban core, while helping to curb urban sprawl by reducing the demand for development in suburban greenfields. Etre found that approximately one-half of U.S. cities do not formally track vacant land, while just over two-thirds of cities do not track abandoned structures. The major barrier to conducting inventories appeared to be the costs of staffing and technology. A national inventory-funding program could assist cities with overcoming these cost barriers.
Fisman explored how greenspaces affect children's development. An exploratory study was performed with two third-grade classes at Worthington Hooker Elementary School in New Haven. The research highlighted information that can be utilized in future studies, such as mechanisms behind solitary play, identifying the types of spaces and activities that encourage social integration and the role of the “natural” versus the “built” environment of the children’s behavior in the schoolyard. Fisman emphasized the value of children as designers of the schoolyard, as they are the ones who use the space.
Thurlow analyzed the formation of Dominica’s public-private partnership in the provision of energy services. She developed a case study to both illustrate and examine the private sector’s ability to provide energy, especially regarding issues in the protection of Morne Trois Pitons National Park. She also looked for ways to expand public involvement in these partnerships that provide urban services. This research was part of a larger project on the socioeconomic analysis of tourism strategies in Dominica.
Alexis Dinno: “Community Health and Urban Residential Lot Study”
Dinno examined the impact of URI community Greenspace programs on both the socio-physical character of abandoned lots and on the well being of residents living on blocks that contain abandoned lots in the Fair Haven neighborhood of New Haven.
Shane Rosenthal: “The Manila Water Concessions and Their Impact on the Poor”
Rosenthal studied the impact on the urban poor of the privatization of metropolitan Manila’s water and sanitation network.
Shemitz studied the history, science and policy regarding lead poisoning. By drawing upon lessons learned by scientists in the field, Shemitz researched how environmental hazards are detected, obstacles to the accurate measurement of these contaminants, and variation in exposure patterns of special subpopulations.
Jennifer Wells: “Development in Ringwood”
Wells studied the causes of sprawl in Ringwood, New Jersey and the large-scale dynamics of state and regional agencies affecting land use in the Highlands, and areas that runs through the northern part of the state. Based on her study, Wells found that the causes of sprawl include a lack of regional planning and ecological accounting.
The Hixon Center for Urban Ecology was established in 1998 with a generous gift from Alec (’38) and Adelaide Hixon. The work of the Center reflects the Hixon’s interest in encouraging local Yale-New Haven environmental initiatives, as well as global public-private partnerships for a better urban environment.
Noted philanthropists and environmentalists, Mrs. Hixon and her late husband have been generous benefactors of the University for decades, and active in the University’s affairs. In addition to establishing the Hixon Center for Urban Ecology, the Hixons endowed the Lex Hixon ’63 Professorship of World Religion in memory of their son. A tremendously dedicated alumnus, Mr. Hixon received the Yale Medal in 1984, and was a founding member of the Sterling Fellows. Graciously continuing a tradition of involvement, Mrs. Hixon has joined the Leadership Council of the School of Forestry & Environmental Studies.
For more information regarding the Hixon Center, related programs, activities and events, or if you are interested in applying for an internship, please contact us.
Hixon Center for Urban Ecology
301 Prospect Street, First Floor
New Haven, CT 06511
Hixon Center for Urban Ecology
195 Prospect Street
New Haven, CT 06511
Faculty on this research committee on pursuing projects that build from observational to experimental research around vegetation, urban green spaces and people. Two research themes will be explored: 1. Measuring and describing the sociology and ecology of urban green spaces (lots) and gauging their ecological and social benefits; and 2. Measuring and describing the sociology and ecology of streets and throughways and devising new ways of mitigating pollutants and storm water runoff, increasing biodiversity, and enhancing the aesthetic and climate environment for humans.
The Urban Watershed Program promotes faculty and student research on the unique relationships, impacts and demands of watersheds in urban areas.
Watersheds in urban areas encounter stresses unique to the urban environment, while sharing common characteristics and following natural laws of all water systems. Urban watersheds are often polluted, heavily engineered, inaccessible, and little understood by nearby residents; population density exacerbates stresses on waterways.
As cities emerge from a period when they ignored their rivers and harbors, new relationships are being developed with adjacent waterways. Past practices that marginalized waterscapes from the urban environment are being reevaluated. Now, with more attention to urban environmental quality, there is a greater understanding of the vital role waterways play as sources of open space, transportation, recreation, and habitat.
The Urban Watershed Program promotes the interdisciplinary science and policy studies of these waterways. A convenient study site is offered in the greater New Haven area through the established relationships of the Center for Coastal and Watershed Systems and the Hixon Center for Urban Ecology.
Investigators plan to study how installation of self-regulating tide gates on the West River in New Haven Connecticut will alter biophysical characteristics of the river and its marshlands. They will also evaluate how changes in the ecosystem influence how people think about and use the area. They will measure water quality characteristics, vegetation patterns, and fish and bird communities. The Mill River, which is also located in New Haven and has tide gates, will be used as a control. The YSIEconet™ website displays water quality information measured automatically and displayed in real time. Over the course of the day, the parameters respond to tides, river flow, and biogeochemical cycles.
Urban Resources Initiative (URI) is a not-for-profit university partnership whose mission is to foster community-based land stewardship, promote environmental education and advance the practice of urban forestry. URI works in three areas:
URI is dedicated to community participation in urban ecosystem management. A substantial body of learning suggests that sustainable urban ecosystem management depends upon the meaningful participation of local residents. Those who know local conditions and whose daily actions influence the health and quality of urban ecosystems must play a central role in policy, design and management. Sustainable natural resource management and conservation cannot be achieved by technical, scientific solutions alone. Conservation efforts, especially in urban areas where people represent a significant element of the ecosystem, must emphasize social revitalization alongside environmental restoration. Therefore, our approach stresses the integration of the biophysical sciences with the social sciences.
To reach its goals, URI's work is organized around several ongoing programs:
Community Greenspace provides material supplies, technical advice, and classroom-based and hands-on training delivered by URI staff and Yale graduate student interns to support inner city New Haven residents who wish to reclaim and then maintain their distressed urban neighborhoods. Since 1995, we have completed hundreds of diverse urban restoration projects with an annual participation of about 1,000 New Haven residents, and planted well over 1,000 trees (45+ different species) with an overall tree survival rate of 90%. As a result of ongoing affiliation with Community Greenspace, residents report heightened membership in civic and voluntary organizations, rejuvenated feelings of neighborhood ownership, and lasting visible improvements in their daily environment. As one participating resident says, “the project brought neighbors into contact with each other who don't normally interact. It brought about a cohesiveness that did not previously exist.”
One issue facing urban neighborhoods is the growing acreage of abandoned, derelict open spaces. These abandoned lands pose a current and future threat to the quality of life in our cities. These patches of urban land – each less than one acre but totaling hundreds of acres across a city – create great gaps in the landscape: sinkholes where environmental, economic and community potential is wasted. The issues concerning the assessment, restoration and maintenance of these lands are priority concerns.
Each summer, Yale students work as community foresters as part of the Community Greenspace program. We provide Yale F&ES graduate students with supervised, clinical training to supplement their academic work. Professional training increasingly leans toward experiential, authentic learning where students gain real world practice in their field. At URI we have created a program where forestry students can grapple with the critical elements of environmental management while making a real contribution to the urban community we call home.
URI's GreenSkills program offers a unique job opportunity to high school students and ex-offenders, all while combating the decline in New Haven's street tree canopy. The program began in 2007, when the New Haven Department of Parks, Recreation and Trees faced a backlog of requests for street trees. The city decided to partner with URI to plant the backlog of trees, and URI took advantage of this opportunity to offer green jobs to teenagers and ex-offenders. GreenSkills pairs crews of five high school interns or ex-offender apprentices with pairs of Yale graduate student interns. The interns and apprentices receive hands-on training on tree planting and maintenance. At the end of each planting season, interns and apprentices come away with a deeper understanding of New Haven's ecology as well as marketable professional skills. Spring planting takes place from March through May; fall planting occurs from September to November.
To learn more, visit the Urban Resources Initiative website.
The Hixon Center will pursue two key focal areas in the 2010-11 academic year: (1) urban vegetation and (2) stormwater runoff. These two proposed topics are judged to have global importance in urban systems, and have a critical mass of faculty expertise and interest at F&ES. Both topics fit within much larger themes of green infrastructure and ultimately to cities and climate change.
Urban vegetation includes topics related to biodiversity, invasive species, tree planting, microclimate, habitat, and community forestry, among others. Interested faculty includes Mark Ashton, Amity Doolittle, Mark Bradford, Alex Felson, Karen Seto, and Ann Camp.
Stormwater runoff covers all aspects of the hydrologic cycle as it relates to cities. Most importantly this involves a switch from treating stormwater as a waste material to a valuable resource. Relevant faculty include Gaboury Benoit, Peter Raymond, Bradford Gentry, Shimon Anisfeld, Jim Saiers, Jim McBroom, Alex Felson and Kealoha Freidenburg.
The Hixon Center for Urban Ecology wishes to build research relationships with FES students who are interested in urban ecology. Student Research Fellows are chosen from a pool of competitive applicants based on their research proposal’s connection to current Hixon Center research, the outreach potential of that research and its relevance to the continued study of urban ecology. For more information on student research fellowships, please visit the research awards and internships page.
Gaboury Benoit, Professor of Environmental Chemistry, Professor of Environmental Engineering
William Burch, Frederick C. Hixon Professor of Natural Resource Management
Gaboury Benoit, Director for the Center for Coastal and Watershed Systems
The Mission of the Hixon Center is to understand and enhance the urban environment. It pursues this objective by providing an interdisciplinary context for scholars and practitioners to pursue research, teaching and applied activities, emphasizing various themes including:
· Interdisciplinary urban science and policy
· Community-based land stewardship and resource management
· Sustainable urban environmental design
· Urban environmental education
· Examining the urban water cycle
· Providing urban environmental services
Through these and other emphases, the Hixon Center pursues the following objectives:
· Advancing fundamental knowledge and understanding of urban ecosystems
· Minimizing and mitigating harm to and restoring natural systems in urban areas
· Fostering the positive experience of natural systems among urban residents
· Demonstrating the importance of natural systems to the physical and mental well-being of urban dwellers.
These objectives and emphases are principally pursued through three Hixon Center Programs — The Urban Resources Initiative, The Urban Watershed Program, and the Research Program on Vegetation and People in Cities.