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Web App for Enhancing Residential Green Infrastructure and Community-Based Environmental Management

EPA Grant Number: SU835328
Title: Web App for Enhancing Residential Green Infrastructure and Community-Based Environmental Management
Investigators: Lambrinos, John , Gibson, Yvette , Martinson, Richard
Current Investigators: Lambrinos, John , Conte, Thomas J , Gerritsen, Bryce , Gibson, Yvette , Irvine-McElroy, Kelsey , Lenney, Jesse , Martinson, Richard , Warnock, Kimber , Yeung, Godfrey
Institution: Oregon State University
EPA Project Officer: Lank, Gregory
Project Period: August 15, 2012 through August 14, 2013
Project Amount: $14,476
RFA: P3 Awards: A National Student Design Competition for Sustainability Focusing on People, Prosperity and the Planet (2012)
Research Category: Pollution Prevention/Sustainable Development , P3 Challenge Area - Built Environment , P3 Challenge Area - Green Infrastructure

Description:

Objective:

Enabling community-based environmental management requires reducing the roadblocks that currently inhibit individuals from making sustainable management choices. To overcome these roadblocks we propose to leverage Web 2.0 technologies with an ecosystem services framework to create a Web App that will help individuals and communities easily evaluate the sustainability and the environmental impacts of their residential landscaping. The Web App will provide individualized and site-specific analysis of the economic and ecological costs and benefits of landscaping practices, and it will encourage and empower individuals to implement sustainable management alternatives. Social media functionality will also be designed into the Web App that will facilitate collaboration among community members, policymakers and scientists. This innovation is based on the emerging realization that effective solutions to many environmental problems require actively engaging and empowering citizens to initiate their own sustainable management and increase their participation within larger community-based environmental initiatives.

Approach:

An interdisciplinary student team in partnership with Smart Design, an award-winning consumer product design consultancy, will develop a Webb App demonstration prototype using an intensive research and product development process. The design process will begin with user-centered market research involving ethnographic research, hands-on evaluation of computing and social technologies, exploration of current ecosystem evaluation models, and literature reviews across all key areas. This market research will then be used to inform and guide the development of the Web App design. Finally, a Web App demonstration prototype will be tested with potential users and presented at the 2013 National Sustainable Design Expo.

Expected Results:

The primary outcome of the proposed Web App is improved community-based environmental management in the form of engaged citizens that are empowered to make sustainable property management decisions. In addition, our Web App will foster improved dialog and collaboration among citizens, policymakers, and scientists. This will result in a number of associated environmental, economic, and social benefits that intersect and reinforce one another across a range of scales.

Supplemental Keywords:

urban pollution prevention, life cycle analysis, cost benefit assessment, environmental justice, land use, sustainable urban planning, environmental policy, decision making, environmental accounting, sustainability monitoring, environmental education, interactive

Progress and Final Reports:
Final Report

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The perspectives, information and conclusions conveyed in research project abstracts, progress reports, final reports, journal abstracts and journal publications convey the viewpoints of the principal investigator and may not represent the views and policies of ORD and EPA. Conclusions drawn by the principal investigators have not been reviewed by the Agency.

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