2013-2014 Global Challenges Research Team

Above: 2013-2014 Global Challenges Research Teams and Resident Fellows.

Conservation Development

Evaluating an Emerging Approach for Sustaining Biodiversity and Human Communities in Rapidly Changing Landscapes This GCRT's mission is to synthesize data on the practice of Conservation Development (CD), to evaluate the outcomes of CD, and to engage with practitioners to inform the design of future development and land conservation. They define CD as an approach to the design, construction and stewardship of a development that achieves functional protection of natural resources while also providing social and economic benefits to human communities. The GCRT is comprised of 30 collaborators from four universities, five government agencies and conservation organizations, and 12 departments and five colleges at CSU. The ecologists, geographers, sociologists, planners, and experts in conservation finance, real estate, and landscape design on the team give them the breadth of expertise necessary to advance the frontier of Conservation Development. SoGES focal areas addressed: Biodiversity, Conservation and Management; Sustainable Communities; Land and Water Resources

Urban Lab & LENSES

This GCRT will create a collaborative Urban Lab to enhance the sustainability and biodiversity of the urban areas between campus and Old Town, Fort Collins using the LENSES regenerative framework. Our proposal is to develop a research and science based master plan that promotes biodiversity in an urban context using the LENSES Framework. The focus area of the project will be the Mason Corridor UniverCity District in Fort Collins, CO. Through our work, this district will serve as a model for the integration of healthy natural and built environments in an urban context. Through this work we will directly address two of the SoGES focus areas: Biodiversity, Conservation & Management, and Sustainable Communities. Secondary, because of the nature of the project, Land & Water Resources, Energy and Climate Change, Food Security and Governance will also be addressed.

Sustainable African Ecosystems and Societies under Global Change

SoGES GCRT funding will provide the opportunity to bring the PIs and the team together to accomplish the following goals: 1) address state of knowledge and current intra-CSU collegiate participation on biodiversity, conservation and management (BCM) issues in Africa, 2) explore research and education opportunities including innovative ways to address the issues and innovative management solutions to solve problems, 3) develop a CSU center or institute to facilitate this cross-college initiative.

Headwaters Initiative

To balance Biodiversity and Water Security in Critical Watersheds This GCRT will target critical headwater regions of the world, which pose major 21st Century sustainability issues where the intersection of humanity and biodiversity is confronted by rapidly changing environmental and climatic conditions. A scoping exercise will be undertaken to identify signature headwater regions and the challenges associated with these areas as critical sources of water. We will develop a demonstration project focusing on the Cache la Poudre headwater region building on many existing efforts to assess and protect this important local resource. Integral to this will be bringing together of stakeholders and focus groups to discuss mechanisms for adaptation to changing climatic conditions. SoGES Focas Areas addressed:

Sustainable Affordable Housing

Increase Demand for Non-traditional Building Material for Affordable Housing & Sustainable Housing by Identifying Cultural Barriers This GCRT will identify ways to expand the use of non-traditional building materials into highly efficient homes in an effort to reduce the demand for the virgin natural resources typically used in construction. This group will look at the role culture may play in material selection and use from a Native American perspective. SoGES Focal Areas addressed:

Biodiversity Case Studies

Using Case Studies to Promote Biodiversity, Conservation and Management within Sustainable Communities: Best Case Thinking for Curriculum Infusion This GCRT will draw on expertise from several disciplines to identify, author, field test, refine, and make available for curriculum incorporation, a new series of case studies focused on biodiversity, conservation and management within sustainable communities. Case studies will focus on areas including the connections between cattle and sustainable communities, sustainability issues with STEM education, conservation biology, protected lands management and sustainable communities, and others. These case studies will offer educators and community leaders a useful framework for engaging audiences of all ages and backgrounds in active and interactive explorations of complex content with the intent to promote deeper understanding. SoGES Focal Areas addressed: