Overall Rating Gold
Overall Score 70.01
Liaison Rebecca Walker
Submission Date April 13, 2022

STARS v2.2

Southern Oregon University
AC-10: Support for Sustainability Research

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 4.00 / 4.00 Rebecca Walker
Sustainability Manager
Facilities, Management, Sustainability and Planning
"---" 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:

Southern Oregon University's student Green Fund reserves one-third of the total fund for student sustainability research and projects. Student sustainability research projects funded by the program include research on composting and solar feasibility for the university.

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:

SOU's Green Fund is also available to faculty working on sustainability research projects with students. During the first year that the Green Fund allowed requests for sustainability research funding, Environmental Studies and Sociology faculty members worked with several students to research developing a farm and sustainability center for campus, with support from the SOU Green Fund. Faculty members must have a student partner who requests funds from the Green Fund to be eligible. More recently, in the last year, a feasibility study for the Shasta Takelma Learning Garden has been funded, a partnership between Science and Native American Studies.

There is also a foundation fund. And the Provost's Office has a supplementary research fund to meet SOU's mission. Sustainability is at the heart of SOU's mission and values.

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:

At SOU, faculty are evaluated on their scholarly activity involving interdisciplinary, transdisciplinary, and multidisciplinary research, often through collaborations between and among faculty across disciplines as demonstrated through the following various achievements:
· Artistic Performances
· Books
· Encyclopedia entries
· Gallery Exhibits
· Grants
· Invited book chapters
· Journal Articles
· Monographs
· Patents
· Presentations
· Published poems, plays, recordings, stories, and similar creative works
· Software Development

Scholarly activity is measured using several criteria including meaningfulness. To demonstrate scholarly activity is meaningful, achievements must contribute to the profession or the public good. Contributing to the profession may include, but is not limited to, looking at how work is cited or used by other scholars. Contributions may also be measured by how they build new knowledge within the discipline, integrate disciplinary knowledge into a multidisciplinary context, apply disciplinary knowledge in new ways to meet needs in the public or private sector, or convey disciplinary knowledge in new and creative ways to others.

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

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

Hannon Library provides considerable information resources, services, and instruction that provide ongoing support for sustainability research and learning at Southern Oregon University.

Librarians at SOU create online research guides (LibGuides) for academic programs. Research guides that will support sustainability research include those created for Business, Biology, Chemistry, Economics, Education, Environment Studies and Policy, International Studies, Government Information, and University Seminar. Now that Sustainability has its own major, we will soon be adding a LibGuide specifically for that area.

Hannon Library’s collection of 410,329 print books and 268,078 e-books (as of June 2021) supports sustainability research. In addition, Hannon is a depository library for federal and Oregon state government documents. Students and faculty also have the opportunity to request print books at no cost from our consortium which includes 37 academic libraries in Oregon, Washington, and Idaho. Summit, the union catalog of the Orbis Cascade Alliance, contains over 10 million titles representing 30 million items. Materials are picked up and delivered daily via a courier system, with a delivery turnaround time of two to five business days.

A search in the Hannon Library Catalog for sustainable or sustainability as a subject retrieves 752 print books and 2555 ebooks at the Hannon Library. Of these, 81 print books and 598 ebooks were published in the last 5 years. Summit provides access to another 11,909 books on these subjects. Similarly, a search for environmental or environmentalism as a subject retrieves 6681 print books and 13,572 ebooks (500 and 2184 within the past 5 years) at the Hannon Library. Summit adds the potential of another 76,154 books.

Hannon Library provides access to 167 print and 1273 online journals that are directly focused on aspects of sustainability or environmentalism. In terms of full text articles, the sustainable/sustainability search retrieves 460,666 articles. Of these, 195,076 are peer-reviewed journal articles published in the past 5 years. For environmental/environmentalism, there are over 3 million articles, of which 951,490 are peer reviewed journal articles published in the past 5 years.

Hannon Library provides a number of databases to facilitate discovery of both resources we have at SOU and resources beyond our holdings, but that can be requested through interlibrary loan. Several of these databases support research in sustainability. Examples include: Biological abstracts, BioOne, Nature, and Science Online for research from the science perspective; ABI/Inform, Business Source Elite, and EconLit for research from the business perspective; Agricultural & Environmental Science Collection and GreenFILE for research from the environmental perspective; and CQ Researcher and Opposing Viewpoints for beginner researchers who want to start learning about current or controversial topics.

In addition to Hannon’s Library’s extensive collection of DVD film recordings, Hannon Library offers Academic Video Online, a collection of over 78,000 films in streaming video, including selected BBC documentaries. Hannon Library is currently seeking to add Kanopy, another excellent source of streaming documentaries.

Subject librarians provide instructional sessions to classes in all academic programs as requested. They are also available to meet with students for detailed one-on-one research consultations.

All librarians staffing the Reference Desk are prepared to field questions in sustainability studies. Referrals are made to subject specialists as needed or appropriate.

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

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