Photo courtesy: Paul Joseph / UBC Brand & Marketing
UBC’s SEEDS (Social Ecological Economic Development Studies) Sustainability Program is one of cIRcle’s top contributors of open access student-led research projects. SEEDS fosters “interdisciplinary partnerships between students, faculty, staff and community partners to advance sustainability ideas, policies, and practices” (SEEDS, n.d.).
With an applied research focus, each year the SEEDS Sustainability Program produces a valuable body of student-led research projects that address and advance issues of climate action, urban biodiversity, community wellbeing, and food security, amongst others. Since its creation in 2000, SEEDS has facilitated the deposit of more than 1,600 undergraduate and graduate research reports to cIRcle. Each year, more than 50 new reports are added to cIRcle from both undergraduate and graduate courses, reflecting novel approaches to sustainability research and the development of new initiatives.
Topics from this year’s undergraduate courses included sustainable consumerism, the effects of extreme weather on students, the intersection of urban green space and mental health, and the efficacy of the AMS Food Bank. Graduate student research delved into various topics, including the use of LiDAR data to map understory vegetation at UBC, human-wildlife contact management, equitable learning environments for first-generation college students, and improving waste sorting in the AMS Nest through improved signage.
SEEDS Sustainability Library
In addition to archiving SEEDS student reports in cIRcle, the SEEDS program hosts the SEEDS Sustainability Library. SEEDS reports of all types are categorized using sustainability-focused subject keywords, including ‘buildings,’ ‘energy,’ ‘land,’ and ‘waste.’ In the SEEDS Sustainability Library, as well as in Open Collections, reports can be filtered using subject keywords, as well as course code, authors, and year of publication. By using the subject keywords when browsing SEEDS reports, new and future SEEDS students can identify areas for continued research and inspiration for their own project.
In addition to the text-based research reports that cIRcle archives, the SEEDS program fosters productive knowledge exchange by hosting symposia, workshops, and community engagement forums, and supporting the development of interactive research resources such as toolkits and research visualizations. The SEEDS Showcase blog is another tool used by the SEEDS program to encourage student engagement with sustainability topics and initiatives in a non-classroom-based environment.
Interested in diving and reading some SEEDS reports? Find them in UBC’s Open Collections.