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Around the Nelson Institute

spring2020

Around Nelson Institute

Nelson Institute partner UniverCity Year wins a Community-University Partnership Award
Nelson Institute partner UniverCity Year wins a Community-University Partnership Award

 

Nelson Institute partner UniverCity Year wins a Community-University Partnership Award

 

In June, University of Wisconsin–Madison Chancellor Rebecca Blank presented the UniverCity Year (UCY) program and its partners, including Green County, with a Community-University Partnership Award for their collaborative efforts to address community challenges while exemplifying the Wisconsin Idea of expanding education and outreach beyond the classroom. An interdisciplinary effort, UCY engages with local government leaders to identify challenges and then leverages the talents and expertise of UW-Madison’s faculty, staff, and students to address these hurdles through, analysis, research, concept plans, designs, and policy recommendations.

Now in its fifth year, UCY has engaged with over 1,000 students and faculty members on more than 100 projects with the City of Monona, Dane County, Green County, and Pepin County. This year, the program expects to make a greater impact across the state by partnering with seven communities at the same time: the villages of Egg Harbor and Marshall, the city of Wisconsin Rapids, and Adams, Brown, La Crosse and Milwaukee counties.

The UCY program engages with Schools, Colleges, and Units across UW-System and is a collaborative effort including the Nelson Institute for Environmental Studies and COWS, a national think-and-do tank that promotes high road solutions to social problems, and is housed within the UW-Madison College of Letters and Science.

 

Nelson Issue Brief #2

Second edition of the Nelson Issue Brief focuses on deer ecology, CWD, and more

 

The Nelson Institute Issue Brief summarizes and conveys up-to-date scholarship from across the University of Wisconsin-Madison on key issues of environmental concern. The second edition focuses on deer-related research taking place at UW-Madison. In particular, researchers share insight into the ecological impact of deer, the social and economic impact of deer hunting, and the potential dangers of Chronic Wasting Disease (CWD). Read more

 

 

 

 

 

Guadalajara University

40 year partnership expands international collaboration

 

This summer, the University of Wisconsin-Madison and the University of Guadalajara in the state of Jalisco, Mexico made a decades-old partnership official with the signing of a new, three-year cooperative agreement that will expand collaboration on projects relating to socio-environmental topics while continuing the legacy of this partnership, which began in the late 1970s.

Signed by Nelson Institute Dean, Paul Robbins, Vice-Provost and Dean of the International Division at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, Guido Podestá, Vice-Provost for International Affairs at the University of Guadalajara, Cinthya Alejandra Navarro Pantoja, and University of Guadalajara Costa Sur campus Rector, Lilia Victoria Oliver Sánchez, this new document will expand the Wisconsin Idea and increase collaboration on environmental and social justice initiatives throughout Mexico and the United States.

“What the University of Guadalajara is doing on urban sustainability and environmental justice is simply phenomenal,” Dean Robbins said. “It also matches the Nelson Institute mission and vision perfectly. I’m really excited about this ongoing partnership.”

In fact, this partnership has a long record of success, going back to the very first collaboration in 1979, when Hugh Iltis and John Doebley, with the University of Wisconsin-Madison Department of Botany coauthored a paper in Science with Rafael Guzmán from the University of Guadalajara and Batia Pazy from Hebrew University in Jerusalem, Israel. The paper, covered by an article on the front-page of the New York Times, described a new species of wild corn named Zea diploperennis that sprouted annually from underground stems and was later found to be resistant to many diseases that affect commercial corn. From there, the universities continued to work together in an unofficial capacity for several years, before signing the first memorandum of understanding in 1988. This memorandum, which resulted in a number of successful, collaborative projects, was the result of collaboration and cooperation among many, including then Nelson Institute director, Tom Yuill and Nelson Institute visiting professor and University of Guadalajara professor, Eduardo Santana-Castellón. Over 200 students and professors from both universities have since participated in joint thesis-related research and study-abroad courses as a result of this collaboration. UW-Madison and the University of Guadalajara have also worked together to design and create a biological field-station and a UNESCO biosphere reserve in the remote Sierra de Manantlán mountain range. Other cooperative projects over the years included the design of an undergraduate degree program in management of natural resources, a novel local watershed governance mechanism, and a limnology laboratory in Mexico's largest lake. Thanks to the new memorandum of understanding signed this summer, new projects are now being explored with partners across the UW-Madison campus, such as the Global Health Institute, the Latin American, Caribbean and Iberian Studies program, the Department of Dairy Science, the School of Human Ecology, and the Nelson Institute. These projects will include new work with the Museum of Environmental Sciences presently under construction at the University of Guadalajara Cultural Center, and health and agriculture related topics with the Los Altos University campus, in the city of Tepatitlán which is one of Madison’s three sister-cities in Latin America. “This friendship is one of the best examples of how the Wisconsin Idea expands internationally beyond the boundaries of the state to benefit the world,” said Santana-Castellón. “Although after four decades we might be calling the partnership the Jalisconsin Idea!”

 

Wisconsin Initiative on Climate Change Impacts (WICCI)

Wisconsin Initiative on Climate Change Impacts revived under Governor’s Task Force

 

This past fall, Governor Tony Evers established the Governor’s Task Force on Climate Change in an effort to better understand the impacts of climate change on Wisconsin. This new task force, which will be chaired by Lieutenant Governor Mandela Barnes, will bring together organizations and individuals from around the state, including those involved in the Wisconsin Initiative on Climate Change Impacts (WICCI), which is led by the University of Wisconsin–Madison Nelson Institute for Environmental Studies and the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources (DNR). Dan Vimont, director, Nelson Institute Center for Climatic Research (CCR), and professor, Department of Atmospheric and Oceanic Sciences, and Steve Vavrus, senior scientist, CCR, serve as co-directors of WICCI. New faculty team to address key research and education needs in emerging polar regions Several departments at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, including the Nelson Institute Center for Climatic Research, are collaborating to hire three new faculty members who will focus on research and outreach related to the emerging polar regions. While the faculty will work on a wide range of projects related to the changes occurring around the Earth’s polar regions, UW-Madison will specifically be seeking a Polar Climate Modeler, a Glaciology/Ice Sheet Modeler, and a Polar/Arctic Ecosystems and Ecological Modeler. Read more

 

New faculty team to address key research and education needs in emerging polar regions

 

Several departments at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, including the Nelson Institute Center for Climatic Research, are collaborating to hire three new faculty members who will focus on research and outreach related to the emerging polar regions. While the faculty will work on a wide range of projects related to the changes occurring around the Earth’s polar regions, UW-Madison will specifically be seeking a Polar Climate Modeler, a Glaciology/Ice Sheet Modeler, and a Polar/Arctic Ecosystems and Ecological Modeler.

 

 

 

Holly Gibbs Research Lab

Gibbs Lab Research featured in New York Times

 

The research lab led by Holly Gibbs, associate professor, Nelson Institute Center for Sustainability and the Global Environment (SAGE) and Department of Geography, was featured in the New York Times for their pioneering work to track deforestation. Utilizing cattle movement and supply chain data, the team worked with the National Wildlife Federation to track outcomes from the Zero-Deforestation Commitments in the Brazilian Amazon. These findings were used to create a free, cloud-based supply chain traceability tool called VISIPEC designed for use by Brazilian meatpackers within the cattle sector.

 

 

 

 

Monica White

Monica White receives two awards for her research on Agricultural Resistance and the Black Freedom Movement

 

Nelson Institute professor of Environmental Justice, Monica White has been awarded both the 2019 Eduardo Bonilla-Silva Outstanding Book Award and the University of Wisconsin-Madison Race, Ethnicity, and Indigeneity (REI) Fellowship for her research relating to Agricultural Resistance and the Black Freedom Movement.

White received the 2019 Eduardo Bonilla-Silva Outstanding Book Award for her book, Freedom Farmers: Agricultural Resistance and the Black Freedom Movement, which was published by the University of North Carolina Press in 2018. The award is presented by the Division of Race and Ethnic Minorities Section of the Society for the Study of Social Problems, which includes a committee of academics and professionals. In selecting White for this award, the 2019 committee said, “[White] deftly blends the past and present through her methodological techniques of archive work, semi structured interviews, informal meetings, and more to provide a strong picture of how the resistance of black farmers in the past is being channeled in the present in contemporary black agriculture and food justice and sovereignty movements in places like Detroit, Chicago, Milwaukee, New Orleans, and New York City.”

As a part of the award, White also received a monetary donation, which she gifted to the Mississippi Association of Cooperatives. This organization, which “provides assistance and advocates for the needs of its members in the areas of cooperative development and networking, sustainable production, marketing and community food security,” provided White with editorial support and feedback.

“I’m very grateful to have been selected for this award,” said White.

In addition to the 2019 Eduardo Bonilla-Silva Outstanding Book Award, White has also been selected for the Institute for Research in the Humanities University of Wisconsin-Madison Race, Ethnicity, and Indigeneity (REI) Fellowship. This award allows tenure or tenure-track faculty to be released from teaching and service duties for up to two semesters so that they can focus full-time on their research. In this case, White will be working on her next book which will focus on the individuals who stayed in the south and did not participate in the Great Migration.

“There is a lot of material on the Great Migration from the south to the north but nothing concentrates on those Black families who stayed,” said White. “I want to concentrate on the cost of the migration in terms of fractured families, and for those who stayed, how they held onto institutions, land, and how they created survival strategies. Millions stayed and those stories have been overlooked, so I’m beside myself with excitement to have the opportunity to dive into my new book.”

As a part of the fellowship, White will participate in weekly meetings with other fellows where they will present their work and share their ideas.

“This is one of the many gifts I’ve had working here at UW-Madison,” said White. “My work is better because of the collaborative intelligence and the way colleagues freely give and share here. I feel fortunate to have a chance to collaborate with other fellows.”

 

Professor Steve Born
Steve Born
Professor Stanley Temple
Stanely Temple

Professors Emeriti Born and Temple selected for the 2020 Wisconsin Conservation Hall of Fame

 

The 2020 Wisconsin Conservation Hall of Fame (WCHF) inductees will include two longtime champions of the Nelson Institute, alumnus and UW-Madison Professor Emeritus Steve Born, as well as UW-Madison Professor Emeritus, Stanley Temple.

Born, who was one of the earliest graduates of the Nelson Institute Water Resources Management (WRM) program has dedicated his career to the interdisciplinary field of sustainable resource management. Early in his career, Born worked with the WRM program before taking a leave of absence to serve as Director of the State Planning Agency with Wisconsin Governor Patrick Lucey’s administration. During his time there, he had a hand in supporting the establishment of the UW-Madison and Nelson Institute Energy Analysis and Policy (EAP) program, a graduate-level certificate program. Born later returned to UW-Madison and worked with the Department of Urban and Regional Planning and the WRM program until his retirement.

Temple, who is currently a Senior Fellow for the Aldo Leopold Foundation, spent 32 years with the UW-Madison Department of Forest and Wildlife Ecology. During his time on campus he was affiliated with the Nelson Institute, playing an active role in the development of the Nelson Institute Conservation Biology and Sustainable Development (CBSD) program, which has now evolved into the Environmental Conservation program.

The WCHF induction ceremony will take place on April 25, 2020 at the SentryWorld (the Atrium) in Stevens Point. Read more

 

Fred Madison

A remembrance

 

Frederick W. Madison passed away on June 3, 2019. Madison was a legislative aid to Wisconsin Senator Gaylord Nelson and professor emeritus of soil science at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Madison’s service to the Nelson Institute was significant and impacted many ranging from co-leading the field trip portion of ES 901, chair of the Water Resources Management program, and advisor to nearly 100 students. An excerpt from a memorial resolution presented at the faculty senate included the following:

Professor Fred Madison, Dr. Dirt as his license plate proudly proclaimed, was one of a kind. Through his drooping mustache came a gravelly but kind voice that loved to help people understand the diverse landscapes of Wisconsin and its thin veneer of life-giving soil. Inspired by early life acquaintance with the Boundary Waters and Quetico Wilderness areas, he was passionate about protecting natural resources through education, research, and advocacy throughout his career, and inspired many people along the way.



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