Current Projects

The study of human behavior and its impact on natural systems is critical in developing management and policy strategies for minimizing effects on ecosystem services, public health, and the native ecology. The lab is in Indiana University’s School of Public Health and is focused on understanding facilitators and barriers to the engagement in sustainable and pro-environmental behaviors. Topics under study broadly include community food systems and natural resource sustainability.  Current projects underway include:


Land Transfer to Promote and Perpetuate Sustainable Agriculture in the Midwest

Project Team: Julia Valliant, James Farmer, Mary Fund, Kathy Ruhf, and Maria Marshall.

Institutional Partners: Indiana University: Dept. of Recreation, Park, and Tourism Studies & Ostrom Workshop, Kansas Rural Center, Land for good, and Purdue University

Funder: United States Department of Agriculture: Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education: North Central Region.


Cultural Competency in the Sustainable Agriculture Movement: Traditional Farming Knowledge in a Burmese Refugee Community

Project Team: Jacob Mills and James Farmer

Institutional Partners: Indiana University: Dept. of Recreation, Park, and Tourism Studies & IU Office of Sustainability

Funder: IU Office of Sustainability


Managing Urban Forests in the Face of Climate Change: The Role of Municipal Park and Recreation Departments

Project Team: James Farmer, Daniel Cheng, Burney Fischer, Steve Wolter, Scott Robeson, and Alan Ewert

Institutional Partners: Indiana University: Dept. of Recreation, Park, and Tourism Studies, Eppley Institute for Parks and Public Lands, School of Public and Environmental Affairs

Funder: Dept. of Recreation, Park, and Tourism Studies


Specialty Crops and High Tunnels: Evaluating Success & Building Future Capacity

Project Team: Analena Bruce, James Farmer, and Liz Maynard

Institutional Partners: Indiana University, Purdue University, and NRCS

Funder: Indiana State Department of Agriculture & US Department of Agriculture


Assessing the Outcomes of Community Orchards: A National Census

Project Team: Megan Betz, Jacob Mills, and James Farmer

Funder: School of Public Health-Bloomington