Need a Research Question?

The following topics have been identified in partnership with University operational departments and faculty from various academic departments to assist students in identifying potential JP, Senior Thesis and graduate research topics using the campus itself as a living laboratory for sustainability problem-solving.

Please browse below, or use the sorting options to the right to narrow your search by topic or discipline. Contact the Campus as Lab team, Caroline Savage and Gina Talt '15, for more information or questions!

If you have a campus as lab research question that should be included on this list you can submit it using our contact form.

What zero-waste strategies for large campus events (e.g. Reunions) or for daily operations in selected buildings are the most effective?

Disciplines: humanities and arts, social sciences

Conduct an ecological assessment of campus natural systems including habitat types, biodiversity, soil characteristics, and more.

Topics: landscape
Disciplines: natural sciences

Design and test an inexpensive, small-scale compost system to prevent compostable diningware from campus events from going to the landfill.

Disciplines: engineering

What behavioral interventions can be deployed to reduce food waste in the dining halls and eating clubs?

Disciplines: humanities and arts, social sciences

Evaluate the psychological, social, and cognitive effects of entering dark spaces to more accurately quantify the cost and benefit of turning dorm corridor lights off more frequently.

Disciplines: humanities and arts, social sciences

How much food is being wasted in different campus buildings?

Disciplines: social sciences

Evaluate the feasibility of use of water recovery from sewage for irrigation purposes (regulations, permits, etc).

Topics: landscape, water
Disciplines: engineering, natural sciences

Assess the economic feasibility of building a recycling center on campus.

Topics: waste reduction
Disciplines: engineering, social sciences