Research

Sustainability research at the University of Virginia is vibrant and growing. Faculty and researchers from all schools are involved in research on a myriad of sustainability topics. Many of these efforts bear the hallmarks of sustainability research: interdisciplinary teams, unique partnerships, and projects that turn ideas into action.   To feature your research on this page, please contact: sustainability@virginia.edu.

Nitrogen Footprint (Department of Environmental Sciences)

Nitrogen has emerged as a major environmental problem, and U.Va. is a world leader in the field.  U.Va. researchers have developed N-Print, a suite of nitrogen footprint calculators, which individuals and institutions can use to connect their actions to reactive nitrogen losses to the environment.  Learn more

  U.Va. Bay Game (Department of Environmental Sciences)

Developed by a multi-disciplinary faculty and student team, the UVA Bay Game is a large-scale agent-based simulation of the Chesapeake Bay watershed. Players take on the roles of stakeholders, such as farmers, local policy-makers, watermen, and land developers, and to make decisions about their livelihoods and regulatory authority. Through this interaction, players are encouraged to generate innovative solutions for environmental and economic sustainability. Learn more

  ecoMod (School of Architecture)

Since 2004, the ecoMOD Project at UVA has worked with a variety of affordable housing organizations to create energy efficient and low impact housing units.  The project teams include students and faculty from a variety of disciplines, and collectively they have designed, built and evaluated twelve housing units on eight sites. Learn more

  The Biophilic Cities Project (School of Architecture) 

The Biophilic Cities Project is an umbrella term that refers to research and policy work on biophilic cities, both domestically and internationally, by Professor Tim Beatley and his team at the University of Virginia’s School of Architecture. Its principal aim is to advance the theory and practice of planning for biophilic cities, through a combination of collaborative research, dialogue and exchange, teaching. Learn more

  Center for Design and Health (School of Architecture)

The Center for Design and Healths mission is to pursue cross-disciplinary research to advance the design and planning of patient-centered medical facilities and healthy neighborhoods, towns, and cities.  Learn more

  Smart Building Energy Systems (Multi-disciplinary) 

In 2010, an interdisciplinary team of UVA researchers was awarded a four-year, $2 million grant from the National Science Foundation to develop “smart building” energy systems for residential and commercial buildings, focused on reducing energy consumption by making building energy systems, particularly buildings’ heating, ventilation, and air-conditioning systems, more responsive to occupant behavior.  Learn more

 Alliance for Research on Corporate Sustainability Alliance for Research on Corporate Sustainability (Darden School of Business)

The Alliance for Research on Corporate Sustainability (ARCS) is a partnership among academic institutions created to provide data and networking opportunities to facilitate research on corporate sustainability. Learn more

Jefferson Public Citizens

The Jefferson Public Citizens (JPC) program inspires University of Virginia students to put their learning into action. It offers opportunities for U.Va. undergraduates, in collaboration with faculty and graduate student mentors, to design hands-on research projects that serve the public while advancing students’ understanding of today’s complex world.  Many projects has a sustainability focus.   Learn more

 Center for Undergraduate Excellence, U.Va.

Harrison Awards for Undergraduate Research

These awards provide funding for students to pursue independent research projects during the summer. While the $3,000 grants can be used for projects of any topic, several grants have been awarded to students pursuing sustainability-related research topics, such as studying sunflowers’ power to clean soil. Learn more