Overall Rating Gold
Overall Score 65.20
Liaison Eric Boles
Submission Date March 8, 2017
Executive Letter Download

STARS v2.0

University of Arkansas
EN-9: Community Partnerships

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 3.00 / 3.00 Eric Boles
Director
Office for Sustainability
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Does the institution have at least one formal sustainability partnership with the local community that meets the criteria as “supportive”?:
Yes

A brief description of the institution’s supportive sustainability partnership(s) with the local community:

The U of A Office for Sustainability has met monthly for years with counterparts at the City of Fayetteville to discuss strategies and opportunities for collaboration. These meetings have led to many event partnerships as well as projects where University research supports effective policy at the City level. A Spring of 2017 example would be the U of A Office for Sustainability worked with City of Fayetteville Urban Foresters to develop an amendment to their Tree Preservation Ordinance which would allow the use of ecosystem services equivalent green roofs and green facades as an alternative to trees in dense urban infill developments where trees were not practical.

The U of A Sustainability Council which reports directly to the Provost has formal representation from the City of Fayetteville sustainability and resiliency team. This Council meets quarterly and has since 2012. The U of A Office for Sustainability staff facilitates the Council.


Does the institution have at least one formal sustainability partnership with the local community that meets the criteria as “collaborative”?:
Yes

A brief description of the institution's collaborative sustainability partnership(s):

The University of Arkansas and the City of Fayetteville are members of the Town/Gown Committee. Members from each organization meet at least quarterly to discuss projects that range from solid waste and recycling, to active transportation, and even food security issues within the community.

Another good example is the U of A Bicycle Advocacy Council which has five of the twenty representatives on the Council from the City of Fayetteville. This council was established in the spring of 2016, meets monthly, and has been responsible for advancing/supporting many of the collaboratively funded bicycle infrastructure projects in Fayetteville including an advanced bicycle share system with e-bikes in late 2017 and the first on-street cycle track in Fayetteville to be designed in late 2017. Improving bicycle and pedestrian access in Fayetteville and on the U of A campus supports multiple dimensions of sustainability. The U of A has supported this partnership through co-funding said projects as well as facilitating the partnership and dedicating time from students, faculty, and staff.


Does the institution have at least one formal sustainability partnership with the local community that meets the criteria as “transformative”?:
Yes

A brief description of the institution's transformative sustainability partnership(s) with the local community:

As part of the University of Arkansas' Second Nature Climate Resilience commitment, the U of A has established four community resiliency working groups with representation from both the U of A and City of Fayetteville. Each of the working groups is focusing on a different aspect of resiliency and their topics include built, managed, social, and natural systems. Through working groups, stakeholder sessions, and support from sustainability staff at both the U of A and City, a resiliency strategy document for the community will be developed with actionable items identified for both the City and U of A.

Timeframe: A continuous improvement framework strategy will be used to iteratively improve the plan year after year. There is no defined end date.

Support: The U of A is providing expertise from approximately 30 faculty and staff, with the U of A Office for Sustainability playing the administrative role for the process.

Stakeholders: Stakeholders have both self identified and been selected for various expertise. Both the U of A and the City make an effort to have proportional representation from each stakeholder group, although a formal process has not yet been established.

Systemic Change: This relationship will first lead to a published resiliency strategy with actionable items for each of the stakeholder groups. A continuous improvement framework will be used to iteratively improve the strategy as new challenges are identified.


A brief description of the institution’s sustainability partnerships with distant (i.e. non-local) communities:

The University of Arkansas is currently a member of the Sustainability Consortium, a multinational, multiple university involved program, whose drive is to "more sustainable consumer products through the design and implementation of credible, transparent and scalable tools and services that are science-based, stakeholder-informed, focused on impact, and accessible for all producers, retailers, and users of consumer products." The consortium hopes to create "world where science advances a new generation of innovative products and supply networks that address and improve environmental, social, and economic imperatives." The Sustainability Consortium is composed of a four university partnerships, and partnerships with over 160 major companies and corporations.


The website URL where information about sustainability partnerships is available:

More information on partnerships can be found at sustainability.uark.edu

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