The 2016 INSS annual conference will be hosted across multiple sites. The keynote speaker, cross-site synchronous activities, and the invisible disasters panel will be accessed online through all sites. Local events and activities may not be held across all sites.
Please select a site below to view its conference schedule.
Thursday June 9
(red denotes simulcast across all sites)
8AM Formal Welcome and Site Introductions (all sites)
9AM Keynote speaker Dr. Timothy Beatley – Charlotte hosting
The Promise and Potential of the Global Biophilic Cities Movement
Nature provides many emotional, spiritual and health benefits to residents of cities. Biophilia argues that we have co-evolved with nature, and that we have a deep need to affiliate with the natural world. But how can that connection to nature happen in in an increasingly urbanized world? And what are the other ways that cities can co-exist with, nurture and care for nature, both local and global? Beatley will argue that we need to shift towards a vision of biophilic cities, and will review some of the important ways in which cities can be thought to be biophilic. He will draw from the findings of his current research, especially the ongoing Biophilic Cities Project, and will describe some of things that emerging leaders and partner cities are already doing in this arena. Beatley will survey the emerging practice of biophilic urbanism, as well as discuss future needs and likely future directions. The global Biophilic Cities Network was launched in October (2013) and Beatley will describe the goals and aspirations for this new network.
11-12:30PM Cross-site shared activities: SESSION A. Select one to attend in person or join online.
Washington: Transportation and the Future of Communities (Panel)
The predecessors of the Transportation Research Board at The National Academies date back to 1920. The TRB mission includes broad-based research and dissemination activities to address policy issues for transportation, and it manages over 200 committees and task forces to accomplish its mission. Sustainability has raised new challenges for systems of transportation and transportation agencies in the United States and TRB projects have begun to identify these challenges and their implications for the role of transportation in supporting a sustainable society. These panelists will draw from research and practice addressing these issues to identify dimensions that should be taken into account if goals of social sustainability are to be met.
London: The value and ethics of assessing human well-being and security: A conversation with Des Gasper (Panel)
This panel focuses on the value and ethics of assessments of human wellbeing [development] and security. Using a presentation, discussants, and discussion, the event will highlight how these concepts are important for understanding, designing, and improving sustainability concepts and projects. This topic is crucial given the implications of using concepts like these as goals or objectives and as a basis for assessing change in the planning and implementation of projects.
Dr. Des Gasper is professor of States, Societies and World Development at the International Institute of Social Studies (ISS) of Erasmus University Rotterdam and one of the world’s foremost scholars in the area of human-centered socio-economic development. His research connects human development, development ethics, and public policy in both theory and application. For this event, he will speak for 20-25 minutes about his work on human development and capability and/or human security approach and its relationship to the concept of social sustainability. After his presentation and three people from academia, civil society, and government will expand or comment on one of the ideas he presented. Then, small groups of conference participants will discuss some questions initiated by these discussions.
We hope that this panel will open new dialogues about sustainability, assessment, and the transition to sustainability for all of our conference participants.
If you plan on attending the London Panel please review the slides on climate change below and if you have time the paper on Global Ethics as well.
Chicago: The Value of Networks: a Reflection on the Chicago Sustainability Leaders Network on Opportunities, Experiences, and Recommendations for Collaborative Work
The Chicago Sustainability Leaders Network formed in October 2013 as a group of grassroots leaders from across the city of Chicago set on exploring the opportunities made possible through approaching community sustainability as a collaborative network. Over the course of nearly 3 years, the CSLN engaged over 200 members representing 174 organizations and hosted 49 events with over 800 participants. This panel will explore the new possibilities and challenges that come with being involved in a member-driven network, including:
- Share key initiatives emerging from the CSLN, in particular its role as an in-between space to connect top-down policymakers and bottom-up community organizations
- Reflect on the value of approaching sustainability as a network, and
Identify lessons learned for others working in and organizing networks.
Bend: Cascades Symposium: Pathways to conflict and collaboration in sustainability projects: Addressing the challenges of diverse academic disciplines, community stakeholders, and political adversaries
Matt Shinderman, Ph.D., Natural Resources and Sustainability, Oregon State University – Cascades, firstname.lastname@example.org
Development of a multi-disciplinary, collaborative sustainability lab based on the three-legged stool paradigm: Formalizing research and curricular partnerships between the ecological, social and economic disciplines.
In recognition of the pitfalls associated with disciplinary separation in the pursuit of sustainability research, academic institutions have adopted a number of inter or multi-disciplinary approaches. One trend among land-grant institutions with high research activity has been to collapse single-discipline programs into thematically related inter-disciplinary colleges or departments. These efforts implicitly acknowledge the contextual overlap between disciplines, often including some emphasis on the human dimension. While a step in the right direction, these efforts often tend to over-emphasize ecological and economic disciplines at the expense of meaningful incorporation of social dimensions. More recently, many institutions have launched trans-disciplinary centers and institutes focusing on sustainability-related themes. A significant outcome of this approach is integration of the three-pillar concept into project selection, project implementation and faculty participation.
OSU-Cascades, Oregon State University’s only branch campus, is at a pivotal stage in its early development. In Fall 2015 the campus began offering full four-year degree programs for the first time in its 14-year history, and in Fall 2016 the university will be moving to the first phase of a new campus development project. These changes offer unprecedented opportunities to shape the physical, operational and curricular direction of the campus. In response to faculty and community support for a campus that models sustainability theory and practice, the OSU-Cascades leadership team has embraced and committed to sustainable development as the path forward. Faculty at Cascades have proposed development of a transdisciplinary sustainability lab that will serve as the focal point for research, curriculum development and contract services using a three-pillar approach to sustainability. A particularly important goal of the lab is to identify and develop curricular themes that emphasize existing faculty and community partner expertise related to ecological and human community sustainability. This presentation will focus on the conceptual development of the lab, how the lab will further understanding of the three-legged stool model and how work conducted under the lab banner will increase sustainability literacy among university decision makers, project affiliates and the greater Central Oregon community.
Ryan Reese, Ph.D., Counselor Education, Oregon State University – Cascades, email@example.com
Utilization focused evaluation: Building effective researcher-stakeholder relationships in environmental and social sustainability research
Researchers, educators, policy makers, and community leaders are often faced with seemingly insurmountable value conflicts when addressing the environmental challenges encountered by many communities. Developing trusting relationships with stakeholders is an important factor when promoting values of environmental sustainability in community and increased social capital has been associated with the adoption of pro-environmental attitudes and behaviors. Minimal research has been dedicated to the role of relationship building between researchers and community stakeholders when exploring constructs such as environmental attitudes and behaviors. The purpose of this presentation is to share one way researchers and evaluators can systematically build and sustain relationships with community stakeholders using Utilization Focused Evaluation methodology (UFE; Patton, 2011), an approach to evaluation that promotes relationship building as a first step in any evaluation process. In particular, Dr. Reese will share his evaluation team’s process in applying UFE in a pilot study aimed at exploring the effects of environmental education programming on 4th graders and their families. Processes for identifying and including community stakeholders, assessing stakeholder readiness for project engagement, negotiating possible value conflicts, and determining evaluation priorities based on stakeholder perspectives will be explored. We will discuss the successes, limitations, and lessons learned from the project at hand, including implications for continued researcher-stakeholder relationship building in future sustainability research.
Chris Wolsko, Ph.D., Psychology, Oregon State University – Cascades, firstname.lastname@example.org
Expanding the range of environmental values: Political ideology, moral foundations, and the prospects for an inclusive environmental discourse
Resolving widespread political polarization on environmental issues, particularly in the U.S., remains an intractable problem. Reporting on findings from a series of surveys and experiments, this presentation seeks to clarify the ways in which existing environmental attitudes and behaviors are fractured along political and moral lines, and illuminate a way forward in which a range of different moral visions may be affirmed under the rubric of a common environmental destiny. Correlational data from Study 1 indicate that greater connectedness to nature, conservation behaviors, and concern about and belief in climate change were all associated with a more liberal political orientation and higher individualizing, lower binding, and lower liberty moral concerns. Despite this pattern of relationships, experimental findings from Study 2 demonstrate that conservatives’ pro-environmental attitudes may be substantially increased by framing issues in terms of binding and liberty moral concerns. In Study 3, drawing from work on the common ingroup identity model in intergroup relations, a second experiment demonstrates the enhanced efficacy of an appeal that affirms diverse ideological and moral values in the context of a shared concern for the health of the natural environment. Discussion focuses on the social identity processes responsible for such effects, the resistance to change of some environmental attitudes such as climate change skepticism, and strategies to achieve common moral ground across the political spectrum.
Elizabeth Marino, Ph.D., Departments of Social Science and Sustainability, Oregon State University – Cascades, email@example.com
12:30-2PM Cross-site shared activities: SESSION B. Select one to attend in person or join online.
Atlanta: Food-Energy-Water Nexus and Social Sustainability (Roundtable)
Food, water, and energy are three of the most fundamental resources we require. Societies are able to provide these resources with varying degrees of success, both in terms of the absolute quantities and quality available to their members, as well as the equity of access, either due to affordability or lack of distribution infrastructure.
This panel will discuss metrics for food, energy, and water systems that can capture the equity of availability and the interactions between the infrastructures that can exacerbate existing inequitable distributions or potentially lead to remediating the lack of access for all. It will highlight the role that culture plays in the organization of the provision of these resources, and how finding the right intersection between technology, culture, and economics is critical to solution emergence and adoption.
Charlotte: Social and Physical Mobility in Charlotte
For the past several months, the Charlotte Mecklenburg Opportunity Task Force has studied the conditions in the Charlotte region that impede upward mobility for its lowest-income citizens. The Task Force call to action follows results of a Harvard University study by Raj Chetty and Nathaniel Hendren that looked at the upward mobility for children living in large metropolitan areas. The report revealed that the Charlotte area ranked 50th out of the 50 largest US cities (and 97th in the 100 largest US cities) in economic mobility of poor children. The study estimates that a child that is born and lives out their childhood in poverty in Mecklenburg County suffers a penalty of $X to their future income by virtue of their place of residence. Girls suffer a harsher penalty than boys.
Dr. Owen J. Furuseth is Associate Provost for Metropolitan Studies and Extended Academic Programs and is a leader of the Task Force. He is a member and former chair of the faculty of Geography & Earth Sciences and worked as a practicing planner prior to joining academia. His recent research has focused on social disparities in immigrant communities in Charlotte and land use issues at the urban-rural fringe. The synchronous session would include a synopsis of the findings of the Task Force presented by Dr. Furuseth. This will be presented with an emphasis on how transportation options might influence opportunity.
Friday June 10
(red denotes simulcast across all sites)
8-9:30AM Invisible Disasters Panel
Damaging hurricanes and earthquakes are disasters that typically stimulate an immediate and unequivocal response from national governments and relief agencies worldwide. Less widespread yet acute disasters like flood, fire and catastrophic infrastructure failures are also often handled adequately by local governments. Increasingly, however, communities around the world are subject to “invisible disasters” with origins and consequences that are either diffuse or overlooked by responsible entities. Sometimes the origins of “invisible disasters” grow apparent long after the disaster has taken its toll, and sometimes handling the consequences of such a disaster eludes traditional public authorities. Recent tragedies like contaminated water supplies in Flint, Michigan, the great invisible methane gas leak of Los Angeles, and the increasing frequency of life-threatening heat waves challenge traditional, centralized detection systems. They may have been detected by the victims of disaster long before it was publicly recognized by responsible authorities. In such scenarios communities and community development may serve as the first and best lines of defense. This panel will explore the role of communities and local informal networks in identifying and addressing disasters that, for multiple reasons, fail to attract the attention and action of central authorities. The panel will also discuss how proactive community development, can help avert future disaster.
Dr. Divya Chandrasekhar – Assistant Professor, Department of City & Metropolitan Planning at the University of Utah – Will discuss the complexity of factors that contribute to the cause of disasters.
Dr. Sheri Davis-Faulkner– Director for Community Engagement, Ivan Allen College of Liberal Arts, Georgia Institute of Technology – Will discuss tracking emerging community issues in Atlanta with community dashboard
Ms. Sarah Kellogg – North Carolina Outreach Coordinator, Appalachian Voices – Will discuss work with families living near coal ash basins
Dr. Ryan Carlin – Associate Professor of Political Science at Georgia State University – Will discuss political changes following disasters
9:30AM Cross-site Conference Conclusion