Mapping Out Emory Sustainability’s Social Network

Note: The following content comes from a 2016 Emory Report article, which you can read here.

In 2016, after three semesters researching and mapping the university’s sustainability network of over 700 staff, faculty and undergraduate and graduate students, the Graduate Sustainability Group (GSG) has launched an interactive Emory Sustainability Ecosystem map.

The map affords current and future community members interested in sustainability an ability to identify a range of existing initiatives and plug into their work. The map was funded by the Emory Sustainability Incentives Fund.

“One of the challenges we have encountered is that people don’t know what projects are available,” says Ioulia Fenton, a PhD student in anthropology and GSG president. “We hope this map can help students see the broad range of opportunities already in existence, and motivate them to get involved or collaborate with others so that their goals can have a bigger, shared impact.”

The Graduate Sustainability Group presented the map to the Emory community during information sessions. The map allows users to see the entire range of Emory and Oxford College sustainability initiatives and groups, complete with logos and photographs.

Users can also zoom in or search for individuals and projects and click on each one for more details including website addresses, current leadership and contact information.

The map is created through Kumu, an online startup platform that harnesses the power of relationships through stakeholder analysis, social network analysis and other forms of visualization. Through the map, relationships and connections that would otherwise be invisible can be seen, all in one place.

“Through the map, anyone can see all the great work that’s being done at Emory with sustainability,” notes Ciannat Howett, director of Emory’s Office of Sustainability Initiatives. “The Emory Sustainability Ecosystem will allow community members to build on existing relationships and connections, or create new ones.”

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