The Brook Byers Institute for Sustainable Systems Announces Sustainability Next Seed Grant Winners, Second Round Call Opens

Georgia Tech Strategic Plan logo with "Sustainability Next" text underneath.

Georgia Tech’s Sustainability Next Institute Strategic Plan initiative launched an annual seed grant program totaling $250,000 to support interdisciplinary or transdisciplinary climate and sustainability research. The overarching goals of the initiative are to nurture promising areas for future large-scale collaborative sustainability research, research translation, and/or high-impact outreach; to provide mid-career faculty with leadership and community building opportunities; and to broaden and strengthen the Georgia Tech sustainability community as a whole.

The Brook Byers Institute for Sustainable Systems (BBISS), which is administering the initiative modeled after the Office of the Executive Vice President for Research’s (EVPR) “Moving Teams Forward” and “Forming Teams” programs, put out a call for proposals this Spring. Proposal reviewers consisting of academic and research faculty at Georgia Tech were invited and assigned to review a minimum of three proposals each. The complete panel of reviewers discussed the relative merits of each proposal and made recommendations to the Interim Executive Director and Deputy Director of the BBISS. Ultimately three were chosen in the “Moving Teams Forward” category, and three in the “Forming Teams” category.

“I’m delighted that the transdisciplinary focus of the call achieved its purpose – accelerating team-based climate work that strengthens our community-engaged research infrastructure and HBCU partnerships with an emphasis on community engagement and equity,” said Beril Toktay, interim executive director of the BBISS.

The proposals selected for funding are:

Moving Teams Forward

  • Collaborative Approaches to Research Engagement (CARE): Building and Validating a Community-Centered Realist Approach to Human Subjects Recruitment; Lewis Wheaton (BIOL), Karen Minyard (Georgia State), Jennifer Hirsch (Center for Serve-Learn-Sustain), Melanie J Clark (Office of Research Integrity); Chris Parker (Georgia State), and Lea T. Marzo (Center for Promoting Equity and Inclusion in the Sciences).
  • Nurturing Climate-Aware Knowledge Networks for Environmental Justice-Oriented Design; Neha Kumar (INTA), Vishal Sharma (IAC), Anjali Karol Mohan (Integrated Design, India), Bonnie Nardi (UC Irvine), Aaditeshwar Seth (IIT Delhi), and Gayathri Muraleedharan (Integrated Design, India).
  • Urban Heat Atlanta - Moving Forward; Brian Stone (SCRP), Christopher Le Dantec (IAC), Russell Clark (College of Computing), Kim Cobb (Brown University), Jairo Garcia (College of Design), and Na’Taki Jelks (Spelman University).

Forming Teams

  • Building a Virtual Sustainability Lab for Climate Adaptation in Megacities – Urban Flood Modeling as a Prototype; Yi Deng (EAS), Xiaoming Huo (ISYE), and Jian Luo (CEE).
  • Low-carbon Building Materials for Climate Adaptation and Mitigation; Ebenezer Fanijo (BC), Ece Erdogmus (BC), Kimberly Kurtis (CEE), and Giovanni Loreto (Kennesaw State).
  • Heritage BIM and Sustainable Tourism; Danielle Willkens (ARCH), Junshan Liu (Auburn University), Maria Jose Viñals (Universitat Politècnica de València, Spain), Russell T. Gentry (ARCH), and Ece Erdogmus (BC).

The second round for this call is now open for the Fall of 2023, with submissions due on September 15. Details and application instructions can be found on InfoReady.

News Contact

Susan Ryan, Program and Operations Manager, BBISS