Alternating strips of alfalfa with corn on the contour protects this crop field in northeast Iowa from soil erosion. Photo courtesy of USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service.

Note: this workshop has already taken place. Workshop presentations and summaries of discussions are available on the program page; participants' essays and program descriptions are available via the participants page.

This workshop provided an opportunity to think broadly about how to integrate perspectives on sustainability into geoscience programs. It focused on topics of high interest to participants, based on information from applications. The format included a combination of plenary talks, roundtable discussions, opportunities to share challenges and successes, and time for working groups to address issues or challenges selected by the participants. This workshop supports Program Element 2 of the InTeGrate project: incorporating geoscience throughout the curriculum.


The goals of this workshop were to:

  • Learn about existing programs that integrate geoscience and sustainability, the strengths and weaknesses of various program designs, and the challenges and opportunities that they address;
  • Brainstorm new opportunities and goals for such programs in the coming decade;
  • Explore the nature of employment opportunities and career trajectories for students with an integrated understanding of geoscience and issues of sustainability;
  • Develop an online collection of resources describing existing programs and supporting the development of new programs.


The workshop began on Wednesday afternoon, May 23, at 4:00 PM and ended at 11:30 AM on Friday, May 25. Participants must attend all sessions including the final synthesis.


All workshop participants were expected to:

  • In advance of the workshop, submit a one to two page essay describing the philosophy and goals underpinning the design of your program.
  • Describe your program, including information on the career trajectories of graduates, in a format that supports discussion at the workshop and publication on the workshop website.
  • Participate fully in the entire workshop.

Application Process and Selection Criteria

This workshop is designed for college faculty from all disciplines who are leaders of undergraduate programs with a focus on sustainability or environmental issues. We are particularly interested in programs that include a geoscience component or envision adding a geoscience component.

In selecting participants from among the applicant pool, we sought a diverse set of participants, program designs, and institution types. Preference was given to applicants with experience and expertise in the design, implementation, and evaluation of programs that integrate geoscience and sustainability, as well as to applicants interested in strengthening their own programs and assisting others in strengthening or initiating programs. Preference was also given to US faculty.

The application deadline was March 5, 2012. Accepted applicants were notified by late March. Prior to the workshop, accepted applicants were asked to fill out a registration form to confirm their attendance and to communicate their travel arrangements.


There was no fee to attend this workshop, and the project grant (NSF DUE - 112533) covered participant lodging, meals and supplies during the workshop. Participants or their institutions were expected to cover the cost of travel to and from the workshop. Workshop stipends were available to help defray travel expenses in cases of financial need.


The workshop was held on the campus of Stanford University. Participants were housed in a hotel and ate meals on campus and in town.

For More Information

Contact Cathy Manduca.