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Lianne Lefsrud is an Erb Institute Research Fellow with a concurrent appointment as a Dow Sustainability Fellow. In her research, she examines how language shapes our conceptions of technology, energy, the environment and their regulation. She has an interdisciplinary Masters in Environmental Engineering & Sociology and is just finishing her PhD in Business Strategy at the University of Alberta. Her dissertation Golden Goose or Ugly Duckling examines how we infuse the oil sands with value beyond its technical requirements. She is a former regulator of engineering and geoscience (Assistant Director Professional Practice, APEGA), water resource and environmental consultant, and railroader (CN Rail, including training as locomotive engineer & conductor).
Laurie Kaye Nijaki is a Erb Institute Postdoctoral Fellow at the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor. Her research focuses on the sustainable city, with a particular interest in green economic development. She most recently served as the State of California's principal adviser on green economy research, and spearheaded the implementation of a groundbreaking $500-million community-benefits-agreement for Environmental Defense Fund. She holds a Ph.D. in Policy, Planning, and Development from the University of Southern California, where she earned the University's most prestigious fellowship for doctoral studies totaling over $115,000 in research funding and served as her school's doctoral valedictory speaker; a M.A. in Urban Planning from the University of California, Los Angeles where her studies were fully funded by the Erin Brockovich Fellowship in Environmental Justice; and a B.A. in Political Science summa cum laude from the Early Entrance Program at California State University, Los Angeles, where she graduated college at the age of 18.
Dr. Schoolman holds a Dow Postdoctoral Fellowship at the Erb Institute for Global Sustainable Enterprise and the School of Natural Resources and Environment at the University of Michigan. As a sociologist and interdisciplinary social scientist, his current work focuses on the environmental and social implications of local food systems, inequalities in access to fresh and healthy food, localization as a social movement, and challenges to developing a culture of sustainability at institutions of higher education. Dr. Schoolman's research on local food systems was recently awarded a leveraging grant from the University of Michigan Water Center, and he also coordinates qualitative research for the USDA-funded Food Access in Michigan project (Dr. Dorceta Taylor, P.I.). In addition to a Ph.D. in sociology, Dr. Schoolman holds a master's degree in political science from Princeton and a bachelor's degree from the University of Chicago.