University of Vermont

RSENR research - environmental policy

Rubenstein School Research Emphasis in
Environmental Policy and Planning

Faculty, staff, and students with expertise in environmental policy and planning pursue studies of various dimensions of collective action and governance related to environment, energy, and natural resources. They address questions of how politics, policy, laws, conflict, collaboration, and social values are reflected in collective efforts at local, regional, national, international scales to define and respond to environment and natural resource issues. Researchers are involved in projects that examine how we use policies, planning processes, markets, communication, stakeholder engagement, and community-based initiatives to manage natural resources and promote environmental and energy sustainability.

Faculty Research Program Descriptions

Cecilia Danks: Environmental policy, sustainable forestry, community forestry, climate change mitigation, forest carbon markets, woody biomass energy

firewoodCecilia’s work focuses on the intersection of community well-being and forest stewardship. Her research examines how institutional arrangements in natural resource management – especially innovations in collaborative governance, tenure, market initiatives, and multi-sector partnerships – contribute to social and ecological sustainability. In many of her projects, she works with community partners and uses participatory research methods in combination with quantitative and qualitative analyses. She leads the Forest Carbon & Communities Research Group which is currently studying issues of equity and effectiveness related to forest carbon markets and community-based wood biomass energy. For more information, visit her profile or her research website.

Clare Ginger: Environmental policy, watershed/forest planning, organization studies

Community meeting Clare's research focuses on policy and planning processes with applications to environmental issues. She is interested in how we define the intersection of the public interest and environment and natural resources through collective processes in varied organizational settings. Her graduate students work on projects related to forest and watershed policy and planning with consideration of citizen participation, integration of science and social values, and definitions of property. Clare collaborates with colleagues to assess policy and planning dimensions of non-timber forest product gathering in the U.S. and the organizational dynamics of linking population, health, and environment projects in less-developed countries. She is starting work that focuses on how we define and address issues of climate change in multi-jurisdictional settings for watershed and forest ecosystem planning and management. For more information, view Clare's profile.

Jennie C. Stevens: Energy-climate transitions, social dynamics of energy system change, renewable energy, smart grid, carbon management, carbon capture and storage, stakeholder engagement in modeling

Cover of bookJennie’s research, teaching, and community engagement focus on socio-political aspects of energy technology innovation, electricity system change, climate change communication, and facilitating social learning in the transition from fossil-fuel to renewables based energy systems. Her research contributes to understanding the social dynamics of wind power, carbon capture and storage, and smart grid and to improving stakeholder engagement and communication among experts, practitioners, academics, and the public. To learn more about Jennie’s research, see her profile page.

Patricia Stokowski: Outdoor recreation, leisure and tourism sociology, natural resource planning

Old mining townPatricia conducts research about social, cultural, and discursive aspects of outdoor recreation behavior, environmental interpretation, and tourism development in rural and resource dependent communities. Her current research focuses on the place-making processes enacted by people in transitioning communities, the cultural meanings of forest landscapes, and community / agency discourses in natural resource management. Her work emphasizes interpretive research methods, and she is known for her longitudinal study of the development and impacts of gambling-based tourism in the former mining towns of Central City and Black Hawk, Colorado. For more information, visit Patricia's profile page.

Last modified September 05 2014 12:10 PM