Themes & Pursuits

The National Socio-Environmental Synthesis Center (SESYNC) supports education research projects through its Themes and Pursuits program.

The "Learning to Integrate Across Natural and Social Sciences" Theme builds upon existing knowledge from various disciplines to advance our understanding of:

  1. how undergraduate and graduate students learn to integrate data, concepts, techniques, approaches, tools, perspectives, theories, etc. from natural and social sciences to understand environmental problems and inform solutions, and
  2. pedagogies that support the development of this cognitive ability in a socio-environmental context at the undergraduate or graduate level.

This education-focused Theme currently supports the Pursuit projects below, funded in 2013.

The "Enhancing Socio-Environmental Research & Education: Building Resources for Action-Oriented Team Science Through Syntheses of Practices & Theories" Theme aims to analyze, evaluate, and synthesize the practices, tools, methods, and strategies of action-oriented team science to significantly improve research teams' effectiveness at understanding socio-environmental problems and informing socio-environmental decisions.

This education-focused Theme currently supports the Pursuit projects below, funded in 2015.

Project Title Year Funded Principal Investigator
The death and life of biodiversity: modeling extinction and resilience on islands 2018 Siobhán B. Cooke, Johns Hopkins University, Liliana M. Dávalos, Stony Brook University
Legal Design Principles of Government-Supported Adaptation: Designing Effective Decentralization Programs in Cities and Vital Water Social-Ecological Systems 2018 Daniel A. DeCaro, University of Louisville, Edella Schlager, The University of Arizona, Tucson
New Scenarios and Models for Climate Engineering 2018 Simon Nicholson, American University, Christopher Trisos, SESYNC
Food-Energy-Water Interdependencies of the Global Agrarian Transition 2018 Jampel Dell’Angelo, VU University Amsterdam, Paolo D’Odorico, University of California Berkeley
Understanding causal pathways and feedbacks within complex water management systems 2018 Albert Ruhi, University of California Berkeley
Understanding dynamic environmental and socio-economic interactions in food systems to support decision-making towards a sustainable and resilient agriculture 2018 Xin Zhang, University of Maryland Center for Environmental Science, Kimberly Pfeifer, Oxfam America, Eric Davidson,University of Maryland Center for Environmental Science
Soil as a social ecological feedback: Mapping the social and ecological processes for agroecosystem resilience in the era of climate change 2018 Gabrielle Roesch-McNally, USDA, Andrea Basche, University of Nebraska-Lincoln
Global socioeconomic drivers of insect invasions 2018 Andrew Liebhold, US Forest Service, Michael Springborn, University of California-Davis
Synergistic interactions of environmental degradation, socio-economic development and infectious disease dynamics in the Amazon region 2018 Andres Baeza, Arizona State University, Mercedes Pascual, University of Chicago
Modeling risk perception, vector-borne diseases, and environmental integrity: Understanding environmental impacts of policy decisions for vector control 2018 Nina Fefferman, University of Tennessee