George Perkins Marsh Institute


High Country News: 'California Plans to Log its Drought-killed Trees'

Over the past four years, California has lost more than 66 million trees due to drought, and now the state is planning to log dead trees to reduce the risk of devastating wildfires, according to High Country News (HCN), a nonprofit, independent media organization covering news of the American West. But the planned logging already is proving controversial. More »


Clark's CDP Program Partners with Worcester on Food Economy, Families

The professors and students in Clark's Community Development and Planning (CDP) program learn from and work alongside members of the very community they want to transform. Their research not only pursues solutions to problems besetting urban neighborhoods, but also helps governments and nonprofits aspire to a more socially just world. More »

Request for Consultant Services: Stated Preference Valuation of Water Quality Benefits

Clark University seeks a technical consultant to assist in a three-year, federal grant-funded project that will develop novel stated preference methods to estimate use and nonuse willingness to pay (WTP) for large-scale water quality improvements. The consultant will assist in various aspects of the project, including water quality modeling, development of ecological indicators for use within survey scenarios, and survey development/testing. The scope of work for the project and deliverables are provided below. Consultants may apply as individuals or teams, although we anticipate that consultant teams will be required to provide the necessary expertise. The project will begin as soon as a suitable consultant is identified and contracts established. More »


University of Delaware researchers look at programs to incentivize cover crop adoption

Federal and state agencies have been offering farmers economic incentives to adopt best management practices (BMPs) to help deliver environmental services from agriculture, and yet adoption-though increasing-lags behind government targets. More »


Students hone research skills by assessing Worcester's trees after beetle invasion

Five Clark University undergraduate students on year-long HERO (Human-Environment Regional Observatory) fellowships presented their research last week on how trees in the Worcester area are faring several years after the invasion of the Asian longhorned beetle (ALB). More »


Clark University researchers look to reclassify eastern coyote as 'coywolf'

The eastern coyote: Considered by some to be "invasive," the animal -- which is generally the size of a medium dog -- now can be found in every town in Massachusetts (save Nantucket and Martha's Vineyard), according to the state Division of Fisheries and Wildlife. More »


Clark students track survival rate of trees planted after beetle scourge in Worcester

After eight weeks checking on trees planted in the wake of the Asian longhorned beetle infestation, student researchers at Clark University have found that the city's residents should be commended. More »


New crop of 'HERO' researchers to help protect Worcester's trees

Five Clark University undergraduates recently joined a fight against a common enemy of tree lovers in Worcester and beyond: the Asian longhorned beetle. More »


Clark geographer in Australia to study climate change, drought and the death of trees

Scientists predict that 2016 is on track to become the hottest year on record. They estimate that record-breaking temperatures will stem in part from the current El Nino event, which affects weather worldwide. But they say climate change is also playing a role this year, just as it has for "the previous 17 record-breaking hot years back to 1937," according to The Conversation, an online, independent academic and research news site based in Australia. More »


NOAA fellows heading to summer research projects in Hawaii, California and Maryland

Faye Harwell '15, MS'16, has some words of advice for Clark University's three Marsh-Mosakowski National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Fellows this summer: You never know how you'll end up using the invaluable experience gained through a research project for NOAA. More »


Antarctica or bust

Though nearly 10,000 miles from Worcester, Massachusetts, Antarctica holds a significant place in the history and lore of Clark University. Read the whole entry »

Why the eastern coyote should be a separate species: The 'coywolf'

The Conversation 5/11/2016

Jonathan Way, research scientist at the George Perkins Marsh Institute, authored this editorial, which begins: "There is considerable debate and disagreement among scientists over what to call a canid inhabiting the northeastern United States. In the course of this creature's less than 100-year history, it has been variously called coyote, eastern coyote, coydog, Tweed wolf, brush wolf, new wolf, northeastern coyote and now coywolf, with nature documentaries highlighting recent genetic findings." This article also ran on RawStory. More »

Coastal towns awash in hard choices

Coastal flooding

We see it on the news: video footage of waves crashing violently against seawalls, water flooding streets and making them impassable, beaches eroding and waterfront homes collapsing into the surf. As sea levels rise, officials and residents of coastal communities must make decisions about whether and how to address these problems. The solutions can be costly, and all involve tradeoffs. More »

The 2015-16 Albert, Norma and Howard Geller '77 Endowed Research Awards for projects relating to sustainability

The History of the Albert, Norma and Howard '77 Geller Endowed Research Awards: The Geller Student Research Awards were established by the family of Dr. Howard Geller. Howard graduated from Clark in 1977 with a degree in Physics and in Science, Technology and Society (now Environmental Science and Policy). He earned graduate degrees at Princeton and the University of Sao Paolo an became the first executive director of the American Council for an Energy Efficient Economy (ACEEE). After twenty years of accomplishments at ACEEE, including contributions to the National Appliance Energy Conservation Act of 1987 and the Energy Policy Act of 1992, he left ACEEE to found and direct the Southwest Energy Efficiency Project (SWEEP) in 2001. Remembering his own experience as an activist student researcher at Clark, through these annual awards Howard hopes to support other Clark students as they combine research with action that moves society toward sustainability.

Below is the list of students who received the research award*:

  • Katherine Markham, "Modeling faunal vulnerability to artisanal and small-scale gold mining in Madre de Dios, Peru."
  • Kristen Shake, "(Un)frozen boundaries: Examining the role of sea ice in the socio-legal dynamics of the Bering Sea snow crab fisher."
  • Dylan Harris, "Re-politicizing global climate change: Stories from high-mountain communities in Nepal and Bolivia."
  • Bernadette Arakwiye, "Monitoring forest loss and degradation to evaluate sustainable forest restoration priorities in the Gishwati-Mukura National Park, Rwanda."
  • Wenjing Jiang, "Understanding contemporary agrarian transformation in China: Ongoing transfer of cropland user rights in a reform era."

*Awardees were selected by a panel of Clark University faculty representing multiple departments. The selection process was overseen by the George Perkins Marsh Institute. For additional details contact Dana Marie Bauer, Assistant Director of the George Perkins Marsh Institute.