Overall Rating Gold - expired
Overall Score 69.47
Liaison Sally DeLeon
Submission Date Feb. 28, 2019
Executive Letter Download

STARS v2.1

University of Maryland, College Park
AC-10: Support for Research

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 4.00 / 4.00 Sally DeLeon
Acting Manager
Environmental Safety, Sustainability and Risk
"---" 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? :
Yes

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

The University of Maryland's Global Sustainability Initiative (GSI) promotes an integrated approach to establishing global leadership, advancing the research agenda, and promoting education to implement global sustainability goals — including but not limited to the Paris Agreement and Sustainable Development Goals. As part of the initiative's goal to encourage work across silos in campus sustainability research, GSI is in the process of developing concrete programs to support and provide benefits to interdisciplinary student and faculty researchers in sustainability. For example, GSI will provide mini-grants for curriculum development and undergraduate/ graduate research.

Until 2015, the University of Maryland Council on the Environment—a former advisory group of the Division of Research—held a transdisciplinary competition for graduate students interested in solving environmental problems, known as the Green Fellowship. The fellowship provided a $10K stipend for two graduate students to be shared jointly, each from a different discipline and university department. It was a one year fellowship and required an original collaboration among the graduate students.


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:

University of Maryland’s Do Good Faculty Fellows program supports faculty members as scholars, teachers, advisors, and educational leaders. The Fellows explore social innovation broadly and deeply. They consider how students can engage in social innovation in its various forms (e.g., service-learning, civic engagement, philanthropy) and how they can engage students in their courses to address social problems. They consider various forms of social change and how they relate to their disciplines and courses. Each Faculty Fellow receives a stipend of $2,500.

The University of Maryland's Global Sustainability Initiative (GSI) promotes an integrated approach to establishing global leadership, advancing the research agenda, and promoting education to implement global sustainability goals — including but not limited to the Paris Agreement and Sustainable Development Goals. As part of the initiative's goal to encourage work across silos in campus sustainability research, GSI is in the process of developing concrete programs to support and provide benefits to interdisciplinary student and faculty researchers in sustainability. For example, GSI will provide mini-grants for curriculum development and undergraduate/ graduate research.

The University of Maryland, College Park (UMD) and the Smithsonian Institution's joint Seed Grants for Research Program encourages researchers to cross institutional and disciplinary boundaries, to enhance established collaborative teams to move to the next level in their research, to establish specific high impact research foci and/or generate preliminary data to support new areas of endeavor and to encourage research that leads to new funding opportunities. All full-time faculty at the rank of assistant professor, assistant research scientist or higher at UMD are eligible for this program.

Until 2015, the University of Maryland Council on the Environment—a former advisory group of the Division of Research—annually selected a winner for their Junior Faculty Award. The winner received a plaque, a cash prize of $3,000, and the opportunity to present at a cross-campus seminar arranged by the Council. Selection was made based on outstanding accomplishments through significant contributions to environmental issues across the full range of professional activities including seminal contributions to the literature, student impact, and external collaboration.


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:

CONSIDERATIONS FOR INTERDISCIPLINARY, NON-TRADITIONAL, OR EMERGING SCHOLARSHIP

Scholarship is a dynamic process, and the University of Maryland recognizes that methodologies, topics of interest, and boundaries within and between disciplines change over time. Faculty are encouraged to engage in innovative discovery and dissemination. Several units are already accustomed to recognizing such different approaches and would not require modifications to existing unit criteria for tenure and/or promotion; however, many fields are challenged with assessment of faculty exploring non-traditional research paths. Such individuals will often publish in venues unfamiliar to faculty in their tenure homes, and may have different, though similarly important measures of impact, funding sources, and career networks. Examples of faculty practicing non-traditional scholarship include those who:
• Engage in emerging scholarship that spans more than one discipline, or has a non-traditional approach to an established discipline,
• Work in multiple traditional disciplines, or
• Are involved in scholarship outside that of the dominant model of their tenure homes.
Any exceptional arrangement that requires a modification of criteria for tenure and/or promotion shall be specified in a written agreement from the time of appointment up to the third-year review for untenured candidates, or at any time following the award of tenure, and shall be approved by the faculty and administrator of the first-level unit, by the Dean of the school or college, and by the Provost. (APT Policy Section II)

Each candidate should be made aware of the opportunity to request an agreement specifying a modification of criteria for tenure and promotion. This formal written agreement would specify the nature of the candidate’s duties and obligations to the Department. It is recommended that the Department consult with a scholar from the relevant discipline(s), or one who does similar research, if applicable, to develop the agreement. Additionally, Chairs should assign appropriate mentors from a relevant discipline(s).

APT Review of Faculty with Agreements for Modified Unit Criteria
In cases where there is an agreement for modified unit criteria for tenure and/or promotion, Departments should consider identifying alternative venues and forms of dissemination of products of scholarship that would be acceptable alongside more traditional dissemination in their criteria for tenure and promotion. Examples might include:
• Research or scholarly essays published in refereed journals or books, or accepted for publication in journals or books outside one’s discipline
• Peer-reviewed handbooks
• Cross-disciplinary analysis of extant literature
• Popularizations or applications of scholarly research and theory in journals
• Computer programs or other media products
In reviewing candidates with agreements for modified criteria, APT review committees should include a professor knowledgeable in other discipline(s), from on or off campus, to serve in an advisory capacity to both the Advisory Subcommittee and the Department APT Review Committee. The Department may wish to have this professor present at the APT Review Committee meeting, in a non-voting capacity, in order to provide context for the candidate’s work. The Chair of the Advisory Subcommittee for the candidate should ensure that some of the reference letters are from scholars who conduct research in the other discipline(s), or of a similar nature to that of the candidate. Faculty involved in the third-year review and the Department APT Review Committee should be provided with the agreement as part of their deliberations. Additionally, the executed agreement must be signed and dated by the candidate and included in materials for external evaluators, as well as in the APT Dossier for review at all levels.


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:

University of Maryland Librarian Subject Specialists may be consulted for help in locating information in their areas of expertise, and are available to conduct instruction sessions for university courses. They regularly provide programmatic support of Living-Learning communities where students frequently work in groups on topics directly related to sustainability issues. For example in the Gemstone Living-Learning program students are currently working on projects related to climate data visualization, zero energy desalination systems, Chesapeake Bay oyster reef restoration, greywater filtration, carbon capture, environmental justice and more.

The UMD Libraries have constructed many research guides that address sustainability issues. Here are a few examples:
Environmental Science - http://lib.guides.umd.edu/content.php?pid=491429&sid=4034758
Environmental Economics, Health, Law, & Policy - http://lib.guides.umd.edu/c.php?g=327287&p=2198137
ENSP 102: Introduction to Environmental Policy - http://lib.guides.umd.edu/ensp102
Chesapeake Bay Resources - http://lib.guides.umd.edu/chesapeakebay

The Gemstone Living-Learning program students have websites for their projects. The links can be found here:
Climate Data Visualization - https://teamdiva2019.github.io/
Zero Energy Desalination Systems - http://teammelts.wixsite.com/teammelts
Oyster Reef Restoration - https://teamoysters.weebly.com/
Greywater Filtration - https://teamsunnyd.weebly.com/
Carbon Capture - https://www.teamcapture2020.com/about
Environmental Justice - https://teamejustice.wixsite.com/ejustice


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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