Overall Rating Expired
Overall Score Expired
Liaison Stephanie MacPhee
Submission Date Dec. 20, 2013
Executive Letter Download

STARS v2.0

Wilfrid Laurier University
AC-8: Campus as a Living Laboratory

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete Expired Stephanie MacPhee
Manager: Sustainability Office
Facilities and Asset Management
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Is the institution utilizing the campus as a living laboratory for multidisciplinary student learning and applied research in the following areas?:
Yes or No
Air & Climate Yes
Buildings Yes
Dining Services/Food Yes
Energy Yes
Grounds Yes
Purchasing ---
Transportation ---
Waste ---
Water Yes
Coordination, Planning & Governance ---
Diversity & Affordability ---
Health, Wellbeing & Work ---
Investment ---
Public Engagement ---
Other ---

A brief description of how the institution is using the campus as a living laboratory for Air & Climate and the positive outcomes associated with the work:

Wilfrid Laurier Energy Dashboard

Laurier's energy dashboard virtually displays real-time data of energy consumption for every building in terms of greenhouse gas emissions, units, and dollars spent; it features competition modules to encourage conservation between buildings. The dashboard also allows users to analyze data for troubleshooting in addition to highlighting our campus green features, providing green tips, weather, and discussion forums.

The Sustainability Council the first year residence council uses this dashboard in their annual energy competitions. Each residence building competes to reduce their GHGs and utility bills. The winning building is awarded the amount of cost reduced and is able to spend it on something that benefits the entire residence. This competition allows the students to interact with their fellow residence mates to begin the discussion on energy reduction and holds them accountable for how much of an impact their building makes. The council members are taught different ways to reduce energy and are responsible for informing their residence on tips and tricks on how to cut back energy usage.

+ Date Revised: March 24, 2014

A brief description of how the institution is using the campus as a living laboratory for Buildings and the positive outcomes associated with the work:

Wilfrid Laurier Energy Dashboard

Laurier's energy dashboard virtually displays real-time data of energy consumption for every building, and features competition modules to encourage conservation between buildings. The dashboard also allows users to analyze data for troubleshooting in addition to highlighting our campus green features, providing green tips, weather, and discussion forums.

The Sustainability Council in Residence hosts annual energy competitions, which reduce GHGs and utility bills.


A brief description of how the institution is using the campus as a living laboratory for Dining Services/Food and the positive outcomes associated with the work:

Laurier’s “Mino-kummik” Aboriginal Garden has recently been opened. This organically grown and maintained garden will be used to grow medicines for smudging ceremonies and vegetables for the Aboriginal Student Centre’s soup and fry bread Tuesdays. It includes a rain-water harvesting cistern and a rain and butterfly garden that uses water that would otherwise erode soil and flow into storm sewers.

Students also use the garden as a learning tool in courses such as GG101, in this course students are introduced to human geography. Topics include population and development, cartography and GIS, economic geography, cultural geography and political geography. In laboratory exercises, students learn methods and techniques used by geographers. Students utilize the garden by participating in intercultural training which provides increased awareness and understanding of Aboriginal cultures, knowledge and worldviews.

The other learning course that utilizes the garden is PS332: Environment, Psychology and Action. In this course students have the opportunity to develop energy action plans based on areas within sustainability. The culminating learning activity of the course is the action project. These projects give students the opportunity to learn in an applied way and also make a contribution in the real world. Students have the opportunity to choose the garden as one of their action projects and develop programs and action plans for the space.

Laurier's Northdale community garden project is well under way this season under the advisory of Young City Growers. YCG works to increase participant's knowledge and skills of organics farming, environmental stewardship, local food systems, and entrepreneurial skills in operating a CSA micro-urban farm. Visit the Young City Growers CSA at Laurier and get your weekly veggie basket! Participants pick up a bushel of vegetables a week for $15.

+ Date Revised: March 24, 2014

A brief description of how the institution is using the campus as a living laboratory for Energy and the positive outcomes associated with the work:

Wilfrid Laurier Energy Dashboard
Laurier's energy dashboard virtually displays real-time data of energy consumption for every building in terms of greenhouse gas emissions, units, and dollars spent; it features competition modules to encourage conservation between buildings. The dashboard also allows users to analyze data for troubleshooting in addition to highlighting our campus green features, providing green tips, weather, and discussion forums.
The Sustainability Council the first year residence council uses this dashboard in their annual energy competitions. Each residence building competes to reduce their GHGs and utility bills. The winning building is awarded the amount of cost reduced and is able to spend it on something that benefits the entire residence. This competition allows the students to interact with their fellow residence mates to begin the discussion on energy reduction and holds them accountable for how much of an impact their building makes. The council members are taught different ways to reduce energy and are responsible for informing their residence on tips and tricks on how to cut back energy usage.

+ Date Revised: March 24, 2014

A brief description of how the institution is using the campus as a living laboratory for Grounds and the positive outcomes associated with the work:

Our natural landscaping and water harvesting projects have interactive signage explaining the benefits, which includes a below ground cistern and native species, an above ground cistern, a rain garden and a butterfly garden, and traditional aboriginal gardens. Several classes and campus groups have held classes in these areas as well as specific events being held to service these areas.


A brief description of how the institution is using the campus as a living laboratory for Purchasing and the positive outcomes associated with the work:
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A brief description of how the institution is using the campus as a living laboratory for Transportation and the positive outcomes associated with the work:
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A brief description of how the institution is using the campus as a living laboratory for Waste and the positive outcomes associated with the work:
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A brief description of how the institution is using the campus as a living laboratory for Water and the positive outcomes associated with the work:

Laurier's Mino-Kummik community garden and gathering space has 2 water features with interactive signage for learning - one is an above ground water cistern and the other is a rain and butterfly garden that prevents stormwater run off.


A brief description of how the institution is using the campus as a living laboratory for Coordination, Planning & Governance and the positive outcomes associated with the work:
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A brief description of how the institution is using the campus as a living laboratory for Diversity & Affordability and the positive outcomes associated with the work:
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A brief description of how the institution is using the campus as a living laboratory for Health, Wellbeing & Work and the positive outcomes associated with the work:
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A brief description of how the institution is using the campus as a living laboratory for Investment and the positive outcomes associated with the work:
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A brief description of how the institution is using the campus as a living laboratory for Public Engagement and the positive outcomes associated with the work:
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A brief description of how the institution is using the campus as a living laboratory in Other areas and the positive outcomes associated with the work:
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The website URL where information about the institution’s campus as a living laboratory program or projects is available:
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The information presented here is self-reported. While AASHE staff review portions of all STARS reports and institutions are welcome to seek additional forms of review, the data in STARS reports are not verified by AASHE. If you believe any of this information is erroneous or inconsistent with credit criteria, please review the process for inquiring about the information reported by an institution and complete the Data Inquiry Form.