Overall Rating Silver
Overall Score 61.51
Liaison Karen Eckert, Ph.D.
Submission Date March 5, 2021
Executive Letter Download

STARS v2.1

Principia College
AC-10: Support for Research

Status Score Responsible Party
4.00 / 4.00 Karen Eckert, Ph.D.
Professor and Director
Center for Sustainability
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Does the institution have an ongoing program to encourage students in multiple disciplines or academic programs to conduct research in sustainability? :
Yes

A brief description of the student research program, including the incentives provided and any positive outcomes during the previous three years:

Sustainability students complete an interdisciplinary final project (major: Capstone; minor: Sustainability Research Project). Co-curricular research is sponsored by the Sustainability Club. Tangible results are many, including green purchasing standards, a green roof and apiary, native garden landscapes, GHG and carbon sequestration studies used in campus energy planning, and so on. See also AC-9. A full list of recent Capstones is found here https://sites.google.com/principia.edu/principiasustainability/academics/high-expectations


Does the institution have a program to encourage faculty from multiple disciplines or academic programs to conduct research in sustainability topics?:
Yes

A brief description of the faculty research program, including the incentives provided and any positive outcomes during the previous three years:

The Center for Sustainability, which is embedded in the academic unit, is tasked by its charter to, inter alia:
• Be a resource for faculty development [re sustainability concepts, content]
• Support faculty and student research on sustainability

The Sustainability degree program embraces courses from 17 other departments across all four academic divisions. The Sustainability major requires a second major. These and other embedded collaborations ensure a multidisciplinary approach to sustainability research, an approach strengthened by the foundational lens of the triple bottom line.

Positive outcomes: New courses (and revising existing courses) designed to support SUS learning outcomes; multidisciplinary Capstone research; interdepartmental [SUS, BUAD, GLBS] collaboration in mentoring students to the global Map the System competition in 2019 (https://mapthesystem.web.ox.ac.uk/)


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?:
Yes

A brief description of the institution’s support for interdisciplinary, transdisciplinary, and multidisciplinary research, including any positive outcomes during the previous three years:

To be eligible for promotion in rank, faculty must maintain “a high level of scholarly competence”, including “Keep[ing] abreast of the state of her or his profession, support[ing] professional societies through membership and through participation in their activities, present[ing] papers at professional meetings, publish[ing] research, or giv[ing] some other evidence of professional achievement”. The explicit expectation is that members of the faculty “Demonstrate intellectual growth beyond the boundaries of a single discipline.” Principia College Faculty Handbook, March 2019


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

A brief description of the institution’s library support for sustainability research, including any positive outcomes during the previous three years:

A staff librarian is attached to each academic Division. In the case of Math and Natural Sciences (home to the Center for Sustainability), the librarian routinely shares with faculty and researchers new titles that the library has purchased regarding revenant sustainability topics. As a result the positive outcomes have included: new courses, strengthening existing courses, supporting active research by faculty and students.


The website URL where information about the programs or initiatives is available:
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Additional documentation to support the submission:
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