International Communication Association conference by Ran Duan

Monday, July 27th, 2015 | Author:

First of all, I would like to thank ESPP for supporting my trip to the conference at San Juan, Puerto Rico!

The International Communication Association’s (ICA) annual meeting is one of the biggest conferences in our field. It includes research, teaching, and application of all aspects of human and mediated communication. The association has more than 4,500 members in 80 countries.

My presentation was titled, “Examining international news flow: a comparative study of American and Chinese newspaper coverage of Beijing’s air pollution.” By content analyzing 234 newspaper articles from 2008 to 2013 in both Chinese and American media, I discussed how a local environmental problem became an international news topic under the globalization.

Development of a comprehensive framework to assess the impacts of climate change on stream health by Sean Woznicki

Tuesday, June 23rd, 2015 | Author:

The travel funding support from ESPP allowed me to attend the American Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineers (ASABE) 1st Climate Change Symposium: Adaptation and Mitigation. Held in Chicago, IL from May 3-5, the conference gathered experts to discuss solutions related to the impacts of global climate change on agriculture, water resources, and ecosystems. Here, I presented my research “Development of a comprehensive framework to assess the impacts of climate change on stream health” in the form of an oral presentation.


The keynote speakers at the conference were of great interest to me. They prompted discussion throughout the conference regarding the use of models in climate change impacts and adaptation assessments, specifically in hydrology and crop modeling. By stressing consideration of uncertainty and limitations of hydrological and crop models, they highlighted an ongoing and critical concern in the climate change impacts, adaptation, and vulnerability assessment process. These discussions spurred me to think about new ways to improve my own research.

ESPP’s Hogeun Park presents research on the informal urbanization in Mongolia

Tuesday, June 23rd, 2015 | Author:

First of all, I would like to thank ESPP for supporting this trip. The Association of American Geographer (AAG) annual meeting is one of the biggest conferences for geographers, environmental scientist, urban planners and other scholars. Annually, over 4,500 multidisciplinary presentations have been featured at this conference. Unlike the classroom environments, this opportunity made me experience a professional academia; I had a chance to share my idea and meet the other colleagues who have same academic interests. Especially my study sites, Mongolia, there are relatively few scholars working on. Thus, this is a unique time to meet the people who can share common ideas.


A Time for Building Self-confidence and a Network by Keumseok Peter Koh (Geography)

Monday, June 15th, 2015 | Author:

First I would like to thank ESPP for supporting my travel to the 2015 Association for American Geographers? (AAG) Annual Meeting in Chicago.

In a nutshell it was a great time for me to build my confidence in my research and a human network with other fellow researchers in the field. I felt like the ESPP and the MSU stood right behind me to support my research and presentation at AAG.


At this year’s meeting I presented my latest research, titled “Using Simulated Data to Investigate the Spatial Patterns of Obesity Prevalence at the Census Tract Level in Metropolitan Detroit.” In this presentation I addressed the problem of estimating local obesity prevalence rates by implementing a spatial microsimulation modeling technique to proportionally replicate the demographic characteristics of BRFSS respondents to census tract populations in metropolitan Detroit. Obesity prevalence rates were examined for high and low spatial clusters and studied in relation to the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) measures of low-income neighborhoods and local food deserts and CDC’s measure of healthy and less healthy food environments currently used to target obesity reduction initiatives.

Climate Change Symposium – Adaptation and Mitigation, Chicago by Melissa Rojas

Friday, June 05th, 2015 | Author:

Thanks to the support from ESPP I was able to attend the ASABE 1st Climate Change Symposium- Adaptation and Mitigation in Chicago, Illinois from May 3-5, 2015. I presented a poster based on my research titled: “Climate Change on Livestock Interactions: Impacts and Human Dimensions”. This study reviews the specific global impacts of climate change on livestock production and the contribution of livestock production to climate change. The attendees where very interested in my work and I was able to do a lot of networking for my future academic career. In addition, the symposium had very relevant topics for my research and I was able to learn a lot from different researchers and experiencesrojas

The effect of aggressiveness when scientists communicate by Shupei Yuan

Friday, June 05th, 2015 | Author:

With the support from ESPP, I was able to attend the Annual Conference of Internal Communication Association (ICA) at San Juan, Puerto Rico this May. I presented my work titled “Does being aggressive work? Examining the impact of aggressive communication in the context of nuclear energy” at environmental communication division.

In this paper, we investigated the effect of aggressiveness when scientists communicate with the public about nuclear energy safety. The results of this study were rather interesting.  One interesting finding we found is that when people agree with nuclear energy, the more aggressive the language is, the better quality readers perceive, but the lower writer likeability readers perceive. In other words, the readers find the writer of this aggressive article unlikeable, but they believe the quality of this article is high. The audiences were very interested in this surprising finding when I presented it during the meeting. After the presentation, I had a nice conversation with scholars from other universities such as Nanyang Technological University. I was encouraged to have a further investigation in this area.

A Sociologist and a Geographer Walk into a Bar… by Wes Eaton

Thursday, June 04th, 2015 | Author:

This year’s Association of American Geographer’s (AAG) conference was held along the banks of the Chicago River. I was asked to participate in an interdisciplinary session on the topic of global bioenergy development, and presented a chapter from my recently defended dissertation on community-level responses to proposed bioenergy development in Michigan. The observation I’d like to share in this short essay relates to the disciplinary orientation of social science research, and ways to step beyond these limits.


Weston Eaton received his doctoral degree in Sociology. He is now a postdoctoral researcher at NCRCRD.

My time in the Windy City for AAG by Fatima Barry

Friday, May 01st, 2015 | Author:

My time in the Windy City for AAG ~ Fatima Barry

Before beginning, I would like to first thank ESPP for providing part of the funds needed for my trip to the Association for American Geographers’ (AAG) Annual Meeting in Chicago this April. It was a great few days for me to network with other geographers in my specialization and to present some of my preliminary dissertation work. My presentation took place on the second day of the conference, which was great because it would allow me to focus on meeting people and attending various sessions in the days that followed. My presentation was titled, “The Oil Industry & Social Inequality – Understanding the Research Needs of Rural Communities in the Niger Delta region of Nigeria.” I visited the Niger Delta in 2013 and 2014 with funding from the College of Social Science Research Fellowship and the Geography Department to obtain information on whether it is feasible to conduct research in the region during my proposed time frame and to understand what the research needs are.

Fall Student Research Symposium invited students to explore “Environmental Risk and Decision Making”

Friday, February 27th, 2015 | Author:

The second ESPP Student Research Symposium took place in October with the theme “Environmental Risk and Decision Making.” The symposium was led by a student organizing committee of Zachary Piso (Philosophy and ESPP), Rebecca Bender (Biosystems Engineering), Sarah Murray (Urban and Regional Planning) and Shannon Cruz (Communications).

This year’s symposium featured two keynote speakers. Dr. Joe Arvai is the Svare Chair in Applied Decision Research in the Department of Geography and the Institute of Sustainable Energy, Environment & Economy at the University of Calgary. Dr. Andrew Maynard is the NSF International Chair of Environmental Health Sciences at the University of Michigan School of Public Health and Director of the University of Michigan Risk Science Center.

Dr. Arvai’s keynote speech was titled “A researcher and a policy maker walk into a bar … An appeal for smarter risk management decisions.” It discussed the lag between research on how people make decisions and the creation of applications to improve the quality of their personal and policy choices.

ESPP Grants Two Outstanding Service Awards

Tuesday, February 24th, 2015 | Author:

In fall 2014, ESPP awarded the first “Outstanding Service Awards” to two Michigan State University Students: Bonnie McGill and Allison Stuby.

Bonnie McGill is a doctoral student in the Zoology program. She currently is with Steve Hamilton’s ecosystem ecology lab at the W.K. Kellogg Biological Station. Since joining ESPP in 2012, Bonnie has been active within ESPP through several avenues. She has been a regular attendee at our student research presentations as well as our larger events. She has volunteered to assist ESPP on several occasions, most recently as a note-taker for the Fate of the Earth Symposium last spring, and is currently assisting us as a member of the Colloquia Planning Committee.