The University of Oregon Environmental Initiative has named professors Danny Pimentel, Greg Dotson and Marsha Weisiger as 2023 faculty members.
The Environmental Initiative Faculty Fellow Program provides funding for faculty members to complete a project that contributes to the goals of the initiative. The aim of the program is to enhance cross-disciplinary research and advance the guiding principles of the initiative.
“The faculty member program was one of the first investments we made as part of the Environmental Initiative,” said Executive Director Adell Amos, “I am so proud that we are able to support exemplary faculty of the principles that guide the EI and our work. efforts to build a fair and livable future.”
For another, Pimentel will use virtual reality to make a global problem like climate change an experience on a personal level. It aims to connect people with stories about climate change and inspire young people to pursue science and become environmental problem solvers.
“I am excited to continue exploring how individuals and organizations can use immersive experiences to enact social and environmental change,” said Pimentel, an assistant professor in the School of Journalism and Communication. “I’m interested in studies that explore how virtual reality experiences affect people psychologically and emotionally.”
Dotson will work to position the Environmental Initiative among the community of researchers, policy advocates and policy makers focused on climate mitigation in the energy sector.
“I am thrilled to have been selected,” said Dotson, an associate professor at the Law School. “It means I will have opportunities to focus on progress and work across the disciplines of the university in a meaningful way that addresses real challenges.”
As time passes through the fellowship, Weisiger will promote several projects focused on environmental history that will analyze and interpret the ways humans and nonhuman nature have shaped each other over time.
“I will use this opportunity to help foster interdisciplinary collaboration among the University of Oregon’s prestigious programs,” said Weisiger, associate professor of history in the College of Arts and Sciences. “I plan to connect the environmental humanities, arts, social sciences and natural sciences to tackle the climate crisis and other pressing environmental issues of our time.”
The Environmental Initiative focuses the intellectual energy and work of faculty members, students and community partners on working towards a just and sustainable future through cross-disciplinary research, teaching and experiential learning.
Applications for the 2023-24 Environmental Initiative Faculty Fellows will be considered on a rolling basis through the final deadline of May 1, 2023. Those interested in applying can learn more on the program’s webpage.