DNR Grad Students win the ISSRM Quiz Bowl 2 Years in a Row

For the second year in a row, graduate students from Cornell’s Department of Natural Resources claimed the title of Quiz Bowl Champions at the 2012 International Symposium on Society and Resource Management (ISSRM).  Each year, colleges and universities from several nations are invited to enter a team of students to compete in this jeopardy style contest, which has been a highlight of the conference for years.  The questions focus on all aspects of environmental sociology, approaches to social science research, current environmental events, and natural resource management.  Jeffrey Jacquet (a 2012 DNR PhD grad) and Darrick Evensen (a DNR PhD student) returned from the 2011 team to compete once again, accompanied by Chris Clarke (a 2012 graduate from Cornell’s field of Communication), and Ann Armstrong (a 2010 DNR MS grad).

DNR and Cornell Faculty Attended Rio+20

With support from the Atkinson Center for a Sustainable Future, four Cornell faculty—Josh Cerra, Keith Tidball, Katherine Bunting-Howarth, and Marianne Krasny—contributed to the Rio+20 meetings as well as the ICLEI World Congress and ICLEI Urban Nature Forum in Belo Horizonte leading up to Rio+20.  Below is a short summary of their participation. The Cornell presence was noted and made a difference.

They all participated in:

  1. Urban Nature 2-day conference in Belo Horizonte
  2. ICLEI World Congress  http://worldcongress2012.iclei.org/  (a parallel event)—Belo Horizonte
  3. Rio+20—various meetings and presentations as below.

In addition, Keith Tidball is part of the core team from ICLEI, Cornell, Stockholm Resilience Centre, and City of Jerusalem that prepared the Urban Biosphere (URBIS) designation system, which was signed on to by about 50 cities at the ICLEI side events and endorsed by the Secretariat of the Convention on Biological Diversity. Finally, Keith organized the entire Cornell delegation’s participation.

Below is a list of specific Cornell contributions.

KEITH TIDBALL—Two presentations and core team member, URBIS

Tidball, KG. History of the Urban Biosphere initiative. ICLEI Urban Nature Forum. Belo Horizonte, Brazil. 14 June 2012.

Tidball, KG. Greening in the Red Zone. Cities and Biodiversity Outlook Workshop. Rio+20 meetings. Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. 18 June 2012.

KATHY BUNTING-HOWARTH—participant in three RIO+20 events and panelist in third event

Panelist: U.S. Side Event at Rio +20

Putting Words to Action: Implementing the Rio +20 Fisheries Recommendations

Participant: Global Oceans Day at Rio +20 (sponsored by the Global Oceans Forum and IOC-UNESCO) (a parallel event)  –below from attached draft agenda

ParticipantAdvancing Sustainability through Communication and Collaboration, (an official UN side event hosted by the University of Colorado)

Participant. Oceans at Rio+20: Toward Implementation of the Rio Ocean Commitments  (an official UN side event hosted by International Coastal and Ocean Organization, Secretariat of the Global Oceans Forum)

JOSH CERRA—one presentation

Cerra, J. Urban biodiversity: The contribution of science. ICLEI World Congress. Belo Horizonte, Brazil. 15 June 2012.

MARIANNE KRASNY—three presentations

Krasny, ME. Environmental Education and Social-ecological Systems Theory. ICLEI Urban Nature Forum. Belo Horizonte, Brazil. 14 June 2012.

Krasny, ME. Resilience, Learning, and Environmental Education. ICLEI World Congress. Belo Horizonte, Brazil. 16 June 2012.

Krasny, ME. Urban landscapes as learning arenas for sustainable management of biodiversity and ecosystem services. Cities and Biodiversity Outlook Workshop. Rio+20 meetings. Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. 18 June 2012.

DNR Chair to Serve on ESA’s Rapid Response Team

Marianne Krasny, Chair of the Department of Natural Resources, has agreed to serve on the Ecological Society of America’s (ESA) Rapid Response Team.

A select group of ESA members serve on the Society’s Rapid Response Team (RRT), a diverse group of about 40 ecologists who help ESA address policy and media opportunities in a timely and effective manner.

One of ESA’s central missions is to share ecological information with policymakers and members of the media.  Since the Society opened its Public Affairs Office in 1983, ESA has served as a trusted source of ecological information.  The establishment of the RRT in 2005 has greatly enhanced our ability to respond to time-sensitive issues, such as 2010’s BP oil spill.

RRT members work closely with the Society’s Public Affairs Office to:

  • Identify the potential ecological consequences of proposed federal regulations and legislation
  • Respond quickly to media inquiries
  • Assist ESA with position statements or letters
  • Present ecological research at ESA congressional briefings and science exhibitions
  • Interact with congressional offices on time-sensitive issues
  • Write letters to the editor for national and local media outlets

Depending on current national events, ESA may call upon members several times a year.  RRT members generally serve for three years.  ESA also encourages RTT members to alert the Society to policy issues or other opportunities.  In addition, RRT members may contribute guest posts to the Society’s popular blog, EcoTone and participate in ESA’s podcast, The Ecologist Goes to Washington, which features interviews with ecologists who engage in public policy.

DNR Faculty Make the 20 Most Cited List for Society & Natural Resources

Two of the top 20 social science articles listed by Routledge’s Society & Natural Resources Journal were written by DNR faculty and affiliates. The citations are below.

Stedman, R.C. 2003. Is It Really Just a Social Construction?: The Contribution of the Physical Environment to Sense of Place. Society & Natural Resources 16(8):671-685.

Schusler, T.M., D.J. Decker, and M.J. Pfeffer. 2003. Social Learning for Collaborative Natural Resource Management. Society & Natural Resources 16(4):309-326.

Steven Wolf will be an ISS Faculty Fellow 2012-2015

DNR faculty member Dr. Steven Wolf will be joining Cornell’s Institute for the Social Sciences (ISS) as a Faculty Fellow from 2012 to 2015. This is part of a theme project on contested global landscapes.

Steven’s role statement:

My research and teaching on social relations of land emphasizes the resources, interests and accountability mechanisms that structure interplay among state, market and civil society actors in processes of conservation and economic development. I work primarily in agricultural and forested landscapes, and I focus on the tensions and the policy responses that emerge from various socioeconomic and environmental claims on land. I engage questions of environmental governance critically, as my work seeks to place these claims and policy responses in a social, historical and institutional context.  Within the ISS Contested Global Landscapes project, I will be conducting research on forest land tenure and payments for ecosystem services within agrienvironmental policy. The work will include studies in USA, the EU and China.  The empirical cases provide points of entry to questions of conservation finance,  institutional investments in land, and new roles for state actors in environmental governance.

Close encounter with a deer in a downtown Ithaca Mall

During the afternoon of June 3rd, a confused male deer broke into downtown Ithaca’s Dewitt mall and caused some chaos. Fortunately, Jay Boulanger and Mike Ashdown of the Department of Natural Resources were able to tranquilize the deer and bring it to the vet school to treat it’s injuries. Read the full story as it was featured in the Ithaca Journal here.