Urban Ecosystems

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Improving Urban Vegetation

Plants benefit cities in many ways: They regulate climate and air quality, provide recreational opportunities, and much more. Yet we know little about the impacts of various kinds of vegetation on the location, movement and quality of urban water or about what influences decisions regarding urban vegetation. “Connecting People, Land and Water in Urban Ecosystems” is exploring how people decide how to manage vegetation, how such decisions affect water quality, and how government and other institutions use information about behavior and the effects of vegetation cover and water quality to help or hinder links between people and the environment. By identifying factors that shape management of vegetation and land cover in cities and determining the consequences of management for waterways and ecosystem services, the researchers hope to develop strategies for improving water quality in urban settings.

Project Leads

  • Sarah Hobbie, College of Biological Sciences
  • Larry Backer, College of Science and Engineering,
  • Kristen C. Nelson, College of Food, Agricultural and Natural Resource Sciences,
  • Carissa Schively Slotterback, Humphrey School of Public Affairs
Institute on the Environment