About

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The Sustainability Planning Lab provides a dynamic platform for collaborative problem-solving, policy innovations exchange, and dissemination of the results of our work with policymakers, practitioners and community and civic leaders. The Lab research activities include analyzing local and regional sustainability planning documents; creating an inventory of sustainability plans adopted by regional and local governments within the US and abroad; creating a typology to classify different kinds of sustainability plans; assessing the relationship of these plans to other plans and initiatives—internal within the organization and external with adjacent jurisdictions, and examining the drivers behind the communities’ sustainability planning efforts. Through its research work, the Lab identifies model practices for implementing the plans and measuring community sustainability performance over time.

Goals, Mission, and Activities

  • Inventory sustainability plans adopted by regional and local governments within the United States and abroad
  • Create a typology of sustainability plans
  • Dissect the structure and content of these plans, searching for patterns, common features, special elements/sections, etc.
  • Assess the relationship of these plans to other plans and initiatives—internal within the organization and external with adjacent jurisdictions.
  • Examine the drivers behind the communities’ sustainability planning efforts
  • Identify model practices for implementing the plans and measuring community sustainability performance over time.
  • Provide opportunity for researchers and students from Virginia Tech and other universities and institutes to collaborate, share ideas, develop joint projects that advance the policy design and practice of sustainability planning.
  • Disseminate the results of our work with policymakers, practitioners, and community and civic leaders
Click here to learn more about the basics of sustainability planning and plans.

The Sustainability Planning Lab is  is led by Professor Joe Schilling and is fueled by the energy and invention of our graduate assistants and studio students.

Where do I sign up?

As the Sustainability Planning Lab continues to inventory and assess plans, we welcome examples from all types of communities, so if your city, county, town or regional government has a sustainability plan on the books, send us the link and other supporting information.  If you or your organization would like to collaborate on projects or disseminate the results of your work, we are always open to exploring new partnerships.  Please contact Professor Joseph Schilling at Jms33@vt.edu

 

 

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