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Frieman Center Seminars Explore Sustainability Teaching and Research


At AUP, a dedicated multidisciplinary faculty body conducts innovative teaching and research at the forefront of border-spanning issues in the global liberal arts. Not only do students benefit from their expertise and experience, but AUP faculty’s collaborative focus means pedagogical approaches are also frequently shared within and beyond our campus. 

In Spring semester 2023, the Joy and Edward Frieman Environmental Science Center, a research center at AUP dedicated to cutting-edge academics, pedagogies and public outreach on environmental issues, is showcasing faculty innovation through a seminar series highlighting how sustainability and the environment are being incorporated into the full range of disciplines studied by the AUP academic community. 

“An international liberal arts institution like AUP is the perfect place to explore interdisciplinary connections to try to understand issues like sustainability that are very complex,” says Professor Elena Berg, Director of the Frieman Center and Chair of the Department of Computer Science, Mathematics and Environmental Science. “When we teach about sustainability and the environment, we propose models that students can emulate – as they move into the world and become policy makers, entrepreneurs, activists and shapers of the next generation.” 

As part of the AMICAL consortium, a group of likeminded university partners committed to furthering innovation in libraries, technology and learning, Berg is working with AUP librarian Jeff Gima and several others to develop a platform for collecting and curating open educational resources relating to environmental justice. The initiative is supported by a grant from the Scholarly Communication Institute (TriangleSCI). Berg and Gima will open the seminar series by discussing this project and encouraging fellow faculty members to share their own materials. “It feels like a perfect moment to create a space for this kind of dialogue,” says Berg. 

The seminars will take place on Mondays throughout the Spring semester on AUP’s campus. External guests are welcome to attend, either in person or remotely via Teams, if they register in advance. For information about individual sessions, please see the table below. 

Date  Time  Room  Presenter  Title 
Jan 23  17:00–18:15  Q-801  Jeff Gima and Elena Berg  EcoJustice OER: Open Resources for Teaching Environmental Justice Topics at International Liberal Arts Institutions 
Jan 30  17:00–18:15  Q-801  Antonio Lopez (John Cabot U, Rome)  Ecomedia Studies: The Climate Impacts of Information and Communication Technologies 
Feb 6  17:00–19:00  M-013  Isabelle Carbonell  A Mirror of the Cosmos: Film Screening and Discussion 
Feb 13  19:00–20:15  Q-801  Biswamit Dwibedy and Amanda Dennis  Current Trends in the Environmental Humanities and Ecofeminist Fiction 
Feb 20  17:00–18:15  Q-801  Claudio Piani and Manuel Caballer  Teaching and Mentored Research in the Environmental Sciences at AUP 
Feb 27–Mar 12: AUP Spring Break 
Mar 13  17:00–18:15  Q-801  Jula Wildberger and Julian Culp  Thoughts of a Classicist Boomer Teaching Environmental Ethics 
Mar 20  17:00–18:15  Q-801  Tanya Elder  Grounded Imaginaries on Climate Change: Stories from the Field. Sustainable Development Practicum 
Mar 27  17:00–18:15  Q-801  Suzanne Bodevin  Sustainable Investments 
Apr 3  17:00–18:15  Q-609  Renate Stauss  Overcoming an Oxymoron: Sustainability in Fashion 
Apr 10–11: AUP Easter Break 
Apr 17  17:00–18:15  Q-801  Albert Cath  Navigating Climate Change: The Netherlands as a Global Test Case