Overall Rating Silver - expired
Overall Score 61.04
Liaison Tina Woolston
Submission Date March 1, 2019
Executive Letter Download

STARS v2.1

Tufts University
AC-10: Support for Research

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 4.00 / 4.00 Jill Parlee
Assistant Director
Tufts Institute of the Environment
"---" 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 research in sustainability? :

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

Matriculated students at any of Tufts University's graduate programs and professional schools are eligible to apply for Tufts Institute of the Environment (TIE) fellowships to conduct interdisciplinary environmental research projects. Selected students will be listed on the TIE website, invited to present final reports to the Tufts environmental community, and receive funding toward a research stipend and/or supplies (up to $6000 per graduate fellowship).

For undergraduates and graduates, TIE offers two types of financial awards to offset travel costs, Conference Presentation Travel Grants, and Data Collection Travel Grants.

Also, TIE offers a program that supports undergraduate students interested in pursuing environmentally focused research in the natural sciences, social sciences, or humanities. In addition to financial support, students are given mentoring opportunities and a space in our office to work throughout the summer.

Tufts Institute of the Environment runs workshops for graduate students that promote student cohort formation, collaborative sustainability research, and skill development.

Tufts summer scholars program gives research funding to two undergrads in the area of sustainability research every year.

Additionally, Tufts has launched a new initiative to identify key areas of research priority that will be funded to increase Tufts' research enterprise. Specifically, the steering committee identifies 5 priority areas for research funding: Climate, Food, Water & Energy; Comparative Global Humanities; Equitable Society; Living Technology; and One Health. These topics represent an initiative aimed at increasing quality and impact of research in these priority areas to attract top notch faculty and students to grow the Tufts research community.

Outcomes of this early initiative are preliminary, but 8 initiatives aligned with these priority areas have been identified and approved for funding as of July 2018:

Phase I Funded Proposals
Center for Integrated Management of Antimicrobial Resistance (CIMAR)
Culture, History, and Translation
Healthy Aging
Laboratory for Living Devices (LLD)

Phase II Funded Proposals
Climate and Energy
Equity in Health, Wealth, and Politics
Food and Water Nexus
Global Obesity Collaborative


The Feinstein Center is a research group at Tufts focused on promoting humanitarian action and human rights.

This center provides support for student research through a summer grant program: The Feinstein International Center annual summer grants program is designed to stimulate applied research in issues pertaining to complex emergencies, humanitarian assistance, refugees and other migrants, natural disasters, and food security. The grants are intended to support travel and living expenses. Grants are up to $3,000 for overseas positions and up to $2,000 for US-based positions.

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

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

The Tufts Institute for the Environment (TIE) provides funding for interdisciplinary environmental faculty research.

In addition, the "Tufts Collaborates" and "Tufts Innovates" seed grant programs were designed to foster interdisciplinary collaboration among faculty from different departments, and many of the projects funded through those grants have focused on sustainability and the environment.

Tufts Institute of the Environment runs annual faculty workshops to encourage the formation of interdisciplinary environmental research networks in certain research areas related to sustainability.

The research scholarship strategic plan mentioned above relates to faculty research goals, and preliminary outcomes are the funding of the 8 selected projects relating to the priority areas in sustainability topics.

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

Promotion-only within an interdisciplinary program is available for tenured associate professors with the following stipulations:

1. The interdisciplinary program for which promotion is being sought must offer a major;
2. Such promotion shall be reviewed by the Tenure and Promotion Committee according to the standards of scholarship, teaching, and service used in promotion cases within departments;
3. Individuals promoted under the above conditions shall receive the title "professor" of the appropriate program

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

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

The Tisch Library hosts a Digital Library where it stores Tufts' research and collections. The library staff agreed to upload the student sustainability project database into the Digital Library during fall 2018, so that these sustainability student projects could be found by all members of the Tufts community: https://dl.tufts.edu/.

Tisch Library employs a full-time science librarian, who supports sustainability research and a librarian who supports the Urban and Environmental Planning program and the Sustainability Master’s program.

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

The Fletcher School also offers research fellowships in sustainability for graduate students. See: http://fletcher.tufts.edu/CIERP/Education/Internships for more information.

Anne Moore, Program Specialist of Scholarship Development, Office-Dean Undergraduate Education, anne.moore@tufts.edu, (617) 627-5808, is the contact person for the Summer Scholars Program.

Undergraduate research funding: http://sites.tufts.edu/rogue/

Graduate student research:

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