In June 2017, The Center for Serve-Learn-Sustain partnered with IPaT and Civic Data Science to host a satellite conference as part of the Integrated Network for Social Sustainability (INSS).  The multi-site conference with the theme of "Smart, Connected Communities," focused on smart cities and data for sustainable communities.  Carl DiSalvo, SCCC Fellows Program Faculty Co-Director, presented a Smart Cities panel discussion, which built on the work of the Smart Cities, Connected Communities Fellows program.  For additional INSS resources, please see our resources page

Read additional reflections by our SCCC Fellows.

Rethinking the City in Smart Cities,… more

We are pleased to provide you with the third in a series of blog posts from our 2017 SLS Global Student Ambassadors.  As one of the Ambassadors, participating in the Japan Summer Program in Sustainable Development, Emma Browning, provides a perspective on sustainability in a rural area of Japan (Ogaki City) versus a metropolitan area of Japan (Tokyo).


Ogaki City: Rural Sustainability


A fast food curry restaurant situated next to a rice paddy in Ogaki City. Compared to Tokyo, Ogaki has a great deal more agriculture coexisting with its more modern shopping and entertainment - it’s difficult to walk anywhere within the city without stumbling across a rice field or a community garden. This mix of traditional and contemporary keeps the environment in constant focus rather than brushing it off as a vague, irrelevant… more

We are pleased to provide you with the second in a series of blog posts from our 2017 SLS Global Student Ambassadors.  This week, we highlight the Language for Business and Technology (LBAT): Germany program, which takes students throughout Germany and explores regional perspectives in lifestyles, history, and traditions, as well as from an industrial point of view.  Our Global Student Ambassadors in this program, Gabby Oliverio and Deanna Lalo, have been writing a blog about their experiences, highlighting various sustainability related issues they have studied, including refugees in Germanytransportationtrash… more

My research for the past few years has evolved into supply chain social and environmental responsibility. An overarching question that guides my work is: How can the buyer firms be sure their suppliers engage in socially and environmentally responsible practices? It’s a difficult question to answer. After all, the buyers cannot observe processes used to produce goods; they must engage with their suppliers to understand what’s going on. The buyers try different mechanisms (both reward and penalty), yet no one has completely solved the problem. I am looking into issues of how to manage suppliers to make sure they are socially and environmentally responsible.

As a Food-Energy-Water Systems (FEWS) Fellow, I conducted research that will help me answer the following question: How should companies communicate their sustainability contributions to consumers? I want to discover if it makes a difference to consumers whether a company engages in sustainable operations practices or if… more

In the past academic year, students in the George W. Woodruff School of Mechanical Engineering were able to collaborate with the Center for Serve-Learn- Sustain on a number of technically challenging projects that spanned a wide variety of engineering fields and engaged a number of community partners.

First-Years in Dr. Raghu Pucha’s ‘Introduction to Engineering Graphics’ course were given the opportunity to design a solution for a real life problem close to campus: the furious rate of mold and mildew growth in homes surrounding the Proctor Creek watershed. Community leaders suggested that installing low-cost dehumidifiers in these homes might reduce the wide range of public health risks.  Students in this course teamed up to tackle this challenge, and developed numerous in-home dehumidifier designs that were low-cost, safe, and environmentally sustainable.  

Juniors and seniors in Ms… more

As implied by the name, the symposium looked at measuring the progress towards MLK’s dream of equality for all people from the core of the Civil Rights Era to current day, 2017. Presenters discussed the theme from diverse perspectives including Education, Health, Criminal Justice and Civic Engagement. With the members of our tables, we were asked to cite policy, organization strategies and progress made in relation to racial equality for every frame presented. We were asked to understand what “the dream” truly implied and if we, as a nation, allowed for the dream to flourish. We considered the idea of racism. What it is to be racist, or moreover, what exactly is racism? Per Dr. Camara Jones, racism is a system of structuring opportunity and assigning value based on the social interpretation of how one looks (race), that unfairly disadvantages some individuals and communities, and unfairly advantages others, but caps the strength of a society as a whole. Looking deeper, Dr. Jones… more

Read  a reflection by Djuan Coleon, Executive Director of PURE (Project Urban Renewable Energy) on the recent SLS/INSS Conference: Smart, Connected Cities, as he writes about Smart Cities, Big Data, and the Matrix.  Djuan serves as CEO and Board Chair of PURE where he oversees the day to day operations of the organization. He launched PURE in 2014 with the mission to build partnerships, coalitions and strategies that will educate communities on energy efficiency, urban renewal, green technology and environmental justice issues to assist in the facilitation of building collaborative sustainable communities across America.

Over spring break, I took the opportunity to try something different—I decided to spend my break volunteering. Like many Tech students do, I participated in an “Alternative Service Break” project with the Office of International Education (co-sponsored by Serve-Learn-Sustain); our destination was a small city in Florida called DeFuniak Springs, where we would take up residence for several days. Disembarking from the school on Sunday, March 19, our trip began like any other—no one really spoke to each other, or in certain cases came already with a friend. Everyone mostly kept to themselves, until our second stop on the way down. Stopping at a state park, our group was allowed some time to walk around and explore before having a group activity. As an “intellectual” warm-up, the group discussed our ideas on this project: how it might affect the environment, whether we have done service trips before, etc. There was still nervousness throughout the group, but it became clear that… more

Aglanta 2017, the first ever Urban Agriculture Conference held in Atlanta, was truly exceptional. As members of Engineers for a Sustainable World’s Hydroponics research team, we thought attending this conference would be a great way to network with the controlled environment agriculture (CEA) community, as well as with sustainability professionals in Atlanta. Thanks to a subsidized tickets from Serve-Learn-Sustain and student discounts from Blue Planet Consulting, who put on this event on with the City of Atlanta’s Office of Sustainability, 10 members from our organization were able to attend. The conference hosted a vast array of attendees from all different walks of life and skill sets, and there was something to be learned from every person. Through the networking events, we were able to meet and talk with current entrepreneurs promoting various products related to the… more