Overall Rating Gold
Overall Score 68.21
Liaison Jeremy King
Submission Date Sept. 19, 2022

STARS v2.2

Denison University
AC-10: Support for Sustainability Research

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 3.00 / 4.00 Jeremy King
Campus Sustainability Coordinator
Office of the President
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Does the institution have an ongoing program to encourage students in multiple disciplines or academic programs to conduct sustainability research?:

A brief description of the student sustainability research program:

The Environmental Venture Fund was created in 2010. The fund supports individuals (faculty, staff, and students), as well as, organizations that wish to improve the environmental state of Denison’s campus, but lack the financial means to do so. Students, faculty, staff and organizations are encouraged to submit grant proposals for projects have funding needs from $100 to $5,000.

Environmental Venture Fund projects can be researched based and/or pilot projects to test sustainability-related ideas.

In addition to the Environmental Venture Fund, Denison encourages all of its students to conduct senior research and provides resources to enable students to do this. There is no requirement that this research be sustainability-related, nor is sustainability-related research excluded. Students in Environmental Studies and Earth and Environmental Science almost exclusively do their research on sustainability-related topics.

The college offers numerous summer research scholarships in both the sciences and humanities - many of which end of going to students doing sustainability research.

Does the institution have a program to encourage academic staff from multiple disciplines or academic programs to conduct sustainability research?:

A brief description of the faculty sustainability research program:

DURF Grants (Denison University Research Foundation)
Established in 1942 through the generous bequest of a Denison alumnus, Elmer Jones, DURF is an independent foundation whose sole purpose is to support the research of Denison faculty members. The income earned each year from the investments made from the original bequest underwrites the material costs of doing research, such as funding for the following: travel to research sites, equipment and laboratory needs, student research assistants, preparation of materials for publication, survey costs. DURF grants do not fund stipends other than student and faculty stipends related to summer research at Denison. The DURF foundation will not provide funding for food. DURF considers the relevance of research funding requests to the college’s current strategy and priorities. Currently, special attention is paid to projects that include student engagement, student mentorship by faculty, interdisciplinary work, and international engagement. Sustainability and the Arts are also a strategic focus.

The deadline for application normally is in late February. Applications are reviewed by the DURF Board, which makes the final decisions. The DURF Board meets in March to consider faculty applications, interview applicants, and make the awards. Further information and application instructions can be found on the Provost’s Professional Development page on MyDenison. Questions should be addressed to the Associate Provost for Operations, Planning, and Resource Management.

General Funding: DURF funds support equipment needs, research materials, travel, fees to attend institutes, book subventions, student assistants for faculty research, and the like. The primary consideration in evaluating an application is the nature and quality of the research project proposed. Grants will not be made for general sabbatical leave support, or for costs associated with producing a doctoral dissertation. Limited assistance for the publishing of a book that reasonably could be expected to produce financial benefit to the author might be awarded. Awards normally range from $1,000 to $15,000, and preference is usually given to faculty with continuing contracts at Denison. Awards for research with human subjects are contingent upon IRB approval.

The Environmental Venture Fund was created in 2010. The fund supports individuals (faculty, staff, and students), as well as, organizations that wish to improve the environmental state of Denison’s campus, but lack the financial means to do so. Students, faculty, staff and organizations are encouraged to submit grant proposals for projects have funding needs from $100 to $5,000.

Environmental Venture Fund projects can be researched based and/or pilot projects to test sustainability-related ideas.

Has the institution published written policies and procedures that give positive recognition to interdisciplinary, transdisciplinary, and multidisciplinary research during faculty promotion and/or tenure decisions?:

A copy of the promotion or tenure guidelines or policies:

The promotion or tenure guidelines or policies:

Scholarship and creative achievements are both valuable in their own right and instrumental to good teaching. Scholarly achievements are not only measures of a faculty member's continuing involvement in a field of study or artistic endeavor, but also sources of curricular strength and renewal for the institution. Engaging in scholarship is vital to the continued intellectual and professional growth of a faculty member. Scholarship is also vital to teaching because it informs the subject matter of courses and establishes the faculty member as a model from whom students learn.

The candidate's body of scholarship should flow from a vision of scholarly growth which should be discussed in the professional statement. This body of scholarship should reflect a degree of originality in the generation, application, or reinterpretation of concepts, methods, or creative works. The body of scholarship should reflect the activity of an informed and lively intellect and talent that may be read with interest by the candidate's peers beyond Denison and possibly employed in their own work. The issues addressed should be important ones, and the contributions candidates make to their field should be significant and intellectually sound.

A successful candidate for tenure will be expected to have demonstrated a sustained scholarly effort, as well as scholarly ability by producing a professionally reviewed body of scholarship in the form of publication, performance, exhibition, or other final form usual to the discipline. Evidence may include the continuation or completion of scholarly activity that was begun prior to the candidate's employment at Denison; however, there must be a clear demonstration of continued scholarly activity, growth, and productivity while a faculty member at Denison. The tenure review process includes an evaluation of the candidate's scholarship or creative work done by persons not associated either with the candidate or with Denison.

Candidates for reappointment at the third year must demonstrate progress toward meeting the above standard for tenure at the sixth year. Works in progress beyond the dissertation may be sufficient to demonstrate progress toward tenure at the time of the third year review, but are not in themselves adequate for tenure.

Professionally reviewed scholarship and creative works are the most important indicators of scholarly achievement and are essential for tenure. Examples of these may include: scholarly articles, monographs, book chapters; published short stories, poetry, and novels; translations, critical editions, and interpretive anthologies and textbooks; published or recorded music; performances and exhibitions; original work in performing, dramatic, or visual arts; original computer software; and peer reviewed grant proposals.

Other forms of scholarship and creative works may be reported as additional evidence of scholarly activity, for example: book reviews; technical reports from consulting projects; papers presented at professional meetings; and non-peer reviewed grant proposals.

These examples are neither all-inclusive nor exclusive. In every instance, the quality and extent of the scholarship or creative works are most important.

Contributions to the Other Purposes of the College.

As a residential liberal arts college dedicated to educating the whole person, Denison depends upon its faculty to contribute to the life of the College not only as teacher/scholars but also as members of the community. In the extent and quality of their contributions to the College, faculty serve as models for colleagues and students of civic engagement, promote participation in thoughtful public discourse, and exemplify the ability to see individual and departmental interests through the lens of institutional needs. These other contributions to the College have the effect of increasing the overall sense of connectedness within the community: connecting students to the College, colleagues to one another, and the College to the larger world of academe. In doing so, they strengthen the community and promote both unity and diversity. For these reasons, other contributions to the College constitute a third and important criterion for contract reappointment, tenure, and promotion.

Faculty members are expected to engage in ongoing service to the College, which may include service to the discipline or the profession. This service should expand in breadth and depth throughout the career in ways that complement the unique talents of the faculty member. Thus, while the beginnings of a record of service would suffice for reappointment, a more significant record of service would be expected for tenure, and an even more significant record of service would be expected for promotion to professor.

These contributions may take many forms. Active engagement with the department and the College are expected of all colleagues. For this reason, all faculty members are expected to attend department meetings and meetings of the College faculty. Faculty serve their departments in such ways as participating on departmental committees, participating in faculty searches, serving as department chair, advising departmental student groups, and attending and participating in other departmental events. Faculty are expected to contribute to the College in such ways as serving on committees in the governance system, serving on ad hoc committees and task forces, serving on interdisciplinary program committees, attending and participating in admissions events, advising student organizations, and representing the College in various consortial roles, such as on GLCA committees. Faculty members also serve their disciplines and the profession in such ways as serving on editorial boards, prize committees, and review boards and serving in leadership roles in professional organizations. Faculty also serve their communities in such ways as holding elected office and serving on the boards of community agencies and non-profits. Such community service is particularly valued when colleagues lend their professional expertise to help meet civic needs.

Does the institution have ongoing library support for sustainability research and learning?:

A brief description of the institution’s library support for sustainability research:

The Denison Library produces guides on topics related to sustainability in its LibGuides resources, such as this one on Food and Agriculture: https://libguides.denison.edu/food
Or this on Affordable textbooks and OERS: https://libguides.denison.edu/textbookalternatives
And Environmental Studies: https://libguides.denison.edu/environmental_studies
And A citizen's guide to climate change: https://libguides.denison.edu/w101-climate-change

Website URL where information about the institution’s support for sustainability research is available:

Additional documentation to support the submission:

Data source(s) and notes about the submission:

The information presented here is self-reported. While AASHE staff review portions of all STARS reports and institutions are welcome to seek additional forms of review, the data in STARS reports are not verified by AASHE. If you believe any of this information is erroneous or inconsistent with credit criteria, please review the process for inquiring about the information reported by an institution or simply email your inquiry to stars@aashe.org.