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Announcing the Awardees of The Environmental Collaboratory’s Inaugural Research Grant

June 8, 2022

This message was sent to faculty and staff on June 8, 2022 by the Vice Provost and Executive Director of The Environmental Collaboratory.

Dear Colleagues,

I am pleased to announce the awardees of The Environmental Collaboratory’s Inaugural Research Grant, promoting transdisciplinary research innovation through participatory climate and environmental problem solving. With support from the Office of Research & Innovation, the College of Engineering and the Academy of Natural Sciences of Drexel University, seven projects were awarded with over $130,000 in total funding.

The funded projects demonstrate strong transdisciplinary and multi-college engagements with external partners, as well as community-centered approaches to solving environmental problems. All of the projects, briefly described below, will provide unique, experiential learning opportunities for students. They are also aimed at building community; fostering curricular and research innovation; and informing the ongoing, year-one implementation of The Environmental Collaboratory.

Congratulations to the following awardees!

A Community-Scale Monitoring System for Multiple Air Pollutants in South Philadelphia
Monitoring air pollutants and tracing pollution sources in a vulnerable community in South Philadelphia
Led by Jane Clougherty, Dornsife School of Public Health
Partners: Lewis Clark State College, Harvard’s TC Chan School of Public Health, Philly Thrive

The Impact of Greening Strategies on Occupant Health
Gathering empirical data on the effects of home weatherization on indoor air quality and health
Led by Simi Hoque, College of Engineering
Partners: Dornsife School of Public Health, Energy Coordinating Agency, Philadelphia Energy Authority, Utility Emergency Services Fund (UESF), Physicians for Social Responsibility Pennsylvania, and Temple University

The Refugees of Eastwick: Urban Renewal in the Age of Climate Change
Producing a short film portraying the history of environmental injustice in Philadelphia and the impact of climate change on vulnerable communities
Led by Ben Kalina, Westphal College of Media Arts & Design
Partners: Drexel College of Engineering, Eastwick United CDC

Impacts of Climate Change on Primary Care Utilization and Needs in Philadelphia
Analyzing the impact extreme heat, flooding and cold patterns will have on primary care utilization
Led by Nathalie May, College of Medicine
Partners: Drexel College of Medicine, College of Engineering and Dornsife School of Public Health; Esperanza; Eastwick United

Fair Data for Just Adaptation: Promoting Environmental Justice in Climate Adaptation Policy by Improving Environmental Data Infrastructures
Transforming data infrastructure to allow climate data to become more findable, accessible, interoperable, and reusable (FAIR)
Led by Gwen Ottinger, College of Arts and Sciences
Partner: Open Environmental Data Project

Evaluating School Building Health in the West Philadelphia Promise Neighborhood and Empowering Stakeholders with Knowledge
Developing health models of ventilation, filtration and air quality impacts on student health, performance and disease transmission
Led by Michael Waring, College of Engineering
Partners: Drexel Dornsife School of Public Health, College of Engineering and School of Education; Advisory Councils and Committees from Schools in the West Philadelphia Promise Neighborhood

Developing a Community-Led Research Project in Collaboration with ENLACE, San Juan, Puerto Rico
Analyzing geospatial flood data and engaging undergraduates in participatory research to build climate-resilient communities
Led by Elizabeth Watson, College of Arts and Sciences
Partners: ENLACE, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency

I would like to thank our colleagues in the Office of Research & Innovation, the College of Engineering and the Academy of Natural Sciences for their collaboration and support of The Environmental Collaboratory’s inaugural grant. Please visit the Provost’s Office website for more detailed project descriptions.

Sincerely,

Mathy Vathanaraj Stanislaus
Vice Provost and Executive Director
The Environmental Collaboratory