research samples table at World Water Day

Institute Research & Presentations

Student & Faculty Collaborative Research



  • “Incorporating Techniques from the Humanities to Encourage Engagement with Scientific Projects in a College-Level Summer Internship Program.” Lightning Talk for the Science Education, Democracy, and Civic Engagement (SENCER) Summer Institute: Building the Community of Practice, 3-6 August 2023.Presented by Internal Advisory Board member Elizabeth Emery. 
  • “Inclusive Team Internships in Transdisciplinary Sustainability Research Develop Pathways for URG Students to Advance in STEM Careers.” Presenter: Elizabeth Emery, Montclair State University. Additional authors: M. Murray, Y. Besen-Cassino, C. Snyder, B. Johnson, R. Olacio, E. Nunez Perez, H. Spinks, Y. Wang, N. M. Goodey, A. R. Tuininga. Poster Presentation for the NSF Eddie Bernice Johnson INCLUDES Aspire Alliance Summit hosted by UCLA in Los Angeles, CA, 19-20 July 2023. Presented by Internal Advisory Board member Elizabeth Emery. 
  • Murray, M. Spinks, H. Besen-Cassino, Y. Emery, E. Johnson, B. Nunez Perez, E. Wang,Y. Goodey, N. M. Tuininga, A. R. 2023. Female and Hispanic Students Report Higher STEM Learning Gains after Internship Participation. NSF HSI Conference. San Antonio, Texas. May 2023. Presented by Director, Amy Tuininga. 
  • UN 67th Commission on the Status of Women NGO parallel event in March 2023 Feminist Confrontations with Patriarchy in STEM, Education & Community Networks Yasemin Besen-Cassino, PhD “Gender Inequality in STEM education: A Longitudinal Study of Interdisciplinary Internships.” March 10th – March 17th 2023). Presented by Internal Advisory Board Member, Yasemin Besen-Cassino.
  • Climate Change as a Systems Change Conference, Uni Graz( Graz, Austria)  March 2023. Presented by Internal Advisory Board Member, Yasemin Besen-Cassino.
  • Nisha Cavanaugh, Nina Goodey, Greg Miller, Melissa Rowland-Goldsmith, and Niki Woitowich. Building science communication training into your classrooms, training programs and large-scale grants. ASBMB Annual Meeting. March 2023.  Workshop presentation on implementing ASBMB communication workshop in Green Team internship program. Presented by Associate Director, Nina Goodey.


  • Nunez Perez, E., Olacio, R. (2022 September). The Sustainable Prescription: Benefits of Green Roof Implementation for Urban Hospitals. Presentation at The State of Green Roofs 2022, New York. Presented by Assistant Director, Emma Nunez Perez
  • Goodey, N. Emery, E. Besen-Cassino, Y. Johnson, B. Miller, A. Mills, T. Tuininga, A. STEM literacy and career paths through inclusive team internships. NSF IUSE 2022 Summit, Washington D.C. June 2022. Poster presentation. Presented by Associate Director, Nina Goodey

Faculty Research

Faculty Grants

Development and web-based dissemination of high-resolution distributed hydrological information for promoting sustainable water management.

Dr. Clement Alo (Earth and Environmental Sciences) and Dr. Aparna Varde (Computer Science)

precipitation in Africa past and projected
  • Research sought to develop high-resolution (10 km) climate projections for the next ~5 decades to facilitate regional and watershed scale impact assessments in sub-Saharan Africa.
  • The aim of these projections is to inform sustainable climate-related resource development in the region.

Connecting New Jersey farmers and consumers through direct-to-consumer marketing channels: A transdisciplinary approach.

Dr. Renata Blumberg (Nutrition and Food Studies) and Dr. Pankaj Lal (Earth and Environmental Studies)

  • Research sought to analyze how farmers’ markets in urban communities could play a role in improving both farmer livelihoods and the nutrition of low-income consumers with limited access to fresh fruits and vegetables.
  • The goal of this research is to bridge the gap between New Jersey’s agricultural producers/farmers and consumers, advancing sustainable development in New Jersey.

Towards a sustainable direct potable reuse (DPR) approach with stormwater.

Dr. Yang Deng (Earth and Environmental Studies) and Dr. Pankaj Lal (Earth and Environmental Studies)

  • Research sought to develop a new direct potable reuse (DPR) approach using storm water as an alternative water source to support sustainable development.
  • The research also focused on developing an innovative storm water management strategy to alleviate the runoff induced pollution to natural water bodies for safeguarding healthy ecosystems and recovering the productivity and cost-loss related to the environmental pollution.

Increasing contaminated soil enzymatic function with targeted microbial inocula.

Dr. Jennifer Krummins (Biology) and Dr. Nina Goodey (Chemistry and Biochemistry)

  • Research sought to elucidate the factors driving soil enzymatic activity in contaminated soil at Liberty State Park (LSP).
  • Research also explored how the microbial community functions in the restoration and management of degraded and post-industrial soils, which are necessary to sustainably support the increasing environmental pressure associated with growing population density.
  • As a result of this funding, three conference presentations and one invited seminar were given.

A quick, sensitive, and economical genomic diagnostic for the surveillance of pharmaceuticals and heavy metals contamination.

Dr. Carlos Molina (Biology)

Research sought to use an economical and sensitive tool to detect pharmaceutical contamination that may lead to antimicrobial resistance (AMR) and drug resistant (DR) infections in developing countries.

Climate change and housing relocation in three global cities: New York, Manila and Ho-Chi Minh City.

Dr. Robert Taylor (Earth and Environmental Studies)

  • Research sought to provide practical models that can aid planners, decision-makers and policy makers in global cities most vulnerable to climate change.
  • Research was presented at four conferences:
    1. Passaic River Institute Symposium VIII, on October 13, 2016
    2. The Third International Conference on Sustainable Development, Columbia University, Sep. 21–22, 2016
    3. Annual Conference of the Association of American Geographers , April 8, 2017
    4. Workshop at the Ho Chi Minh City University of Natural Resources and Environment.

  • An integrated geological, economic, and biological beach dune model
    Dr. Jorge Lorenzo Trueba (Earth and Environmental Studies) and Dr. Pankaj Lal (Earth and Environmental Studies)
  • Lead hazard in the urban areas of New Jersey: A multidimensional approach to sustainable risk management
    Dr. Neeraj Vedwan (Anthropology), Dr. Yang Deng (Earth and Environmental Studies), and Dr. Pankaj Lal (Earth and Environmental Studies)
  • Advancing predictive understanding of hydrologic variability for sustainable management of water resource in the Passaic River Basin, New Jersey
    Dr. Clement Alo (Earth and Environmental Studies), Dr. Menberu Bitew (USDA), and Dr. Ming-Liang Liu (Washington State University)
  • Closing the Urban Water Cycle: Sewage Sludge-Derived Biochar (SSDB) for Urban Stormwater Management
    Dr. Yang Deng (Earth and Environmental Studies), Dr. Pankaj Lal (Earth and Environmental Studies), and Dr. Jinshan Gao (Chemistry and Biochemistry)
  • The Norman Sicily Project, transdisciplinary sustainability research and grant proposal development for a digital humanities effort, an evolving website that promotes the appreciation and dissemination of the monuments that survive from Sicily’s Norman period (ca. 1060 – 1194)
    Dr. Dawn Hayes (History) and Dr. Greg Pope (Earth and Environmental Studies)
  • Development of a field-usable rapid detection test for Ranavirus, an emerging disease of ectothermic vertebrates
    Dr. Kirsten Monsen (Biology), Dr. Nina Goodey (Chemistry and Biochemistry), and Dr. Lisa Hazard (Biology)