The Institute on the Environment selected five projects to receive major funding from its Discovery Grants program for FY 2010. The Discovery Grants program is part of the Institute’s high-impact investment strategy, which aims to accelerate innovation in environmental research and problem solving across the University of Minnesota.
The announcement of the grant awardees follows a highly competitive selection process. Approximately 25 teams of university faculty members and external partners submitted proposals for funding. All five of the selected projects build on the unique strengths of the university, engage both faculty and external organizations, and provide opportunities for graduate and postdoctoral leadership training, as well as undergraduate research.
We’re supporting scientists at the Large Lakes Observatory as they study the world’s great lakes. The LLO is working with the Natural Resources Research Institute and the Center for Water Research in Australia to find better ways to measure ecosystem health, monitor and model these metrics, and anticipate pressing environmental issues. More info
A recent award from the U.S. Agency for International Development is supporting faculty from six U of M colleges working in Africa to build capacity for animal health. The project has the potential to unite the health and environmental sciences at the U of M into a coherent global health program. More info
We’re working with Stanford University, The Nature Conservancy, World Wildlife Fund, and several government agencies and other entities to develop new approaches to integrating economics and ecology—with a focus on how to assess the value of ecosystem goods and services. More info
In collaboration with the Science Museum of Minnesota, we’re creating exhibits, films and programs for a wide array of audiences about the challenges and opportunities of living on a planet where humanity now is the dominant agent of global change. More info
Northern forests and communities face big changes. The IonE-supported Boreal Forest and Community Resilience Project promotes community and ecosystem resilience in the context of uncertainty by providing communities, resource managers and organizations with an opportunity to form partnerships, identify emerging challenges and explore approaches for dealing with change and complexity. More info
The Whole Village Project aims to improve understanding of health, prosperity, education and natural resource consumption of rural Tanzanians. The WVP team will assess practices in 240 villages; empower villagers to make improvements; check back every two years to document changes; and share the results with local people so they can sustain improvements. More info