October 10, 2014
Kellogg Hotel & Conference Center
Michigan State University



The Environmental Science and Policy Program at Michigan State University welcomes abstract submissions from undergraduate and graduate students for 2014 annual symposium, Environmental Risk and Decision Making to be held on October 10th at the Kellogg Conference Center.

Strengthened environmental decision making requires researchers who can critically integrate diverse perspectives and methodologies when conceptualizing, investigating, and addressing environmental risks. Students from all departments are invited to present work at any stage in its development through oral presentations, poster presentations, and discussion panels. Symposium participants will engage researchers with experience working alongside policy makers and public stakeholders and develop the skills to deliberate with researchers outside one’s own discipline. Proposals may consider risk and decision making in any environmental context, including but not limited to:

  • Climate mitigation, adaptation, and geoengineering

  • Water policy and management

  • Resource use and extraction

  • Agricultural cultivation, distribution, and consumption

  • Human and physical dimensions of wildlife policy and management

  • Social, political, psychological and economic factors in risk perception and assessment

  • Challenges in the conceptualization and communication of environmental problems

Accepted proposals will be organized by shared themes but will strive to bring together unique perspectives on each phase in the development of a comprehensive research project.

Submit an abstract here.


Theme for 2014 Event: Environmental Risk and Decision Making

The Environmental Science and Policy Program’s annual research symposium will this year be focused on connecting environmental risk and decision making. We propose this conference as a means of connecting ideas and researchers from across campus in awareness and action toward identifying hazards and the most appropriate response to these hazards. A holistic approach toward sustainability requires understanding of multiple perspectives, and this program intends to foster this understanding through interdisciplinary sharing. This symposium will capitalize on Michigan State University’s expansive and diverse academics to better unite future leaders in addressing the state of the environment.

1.) To bring together multiple disciplines for conversation on topics of environmental risk and
decision making, fostering understanding, networks, and cooperation
2.) To promote research and its communication to relevant parties
3.) To encourage sharing and development of “works in progress”
4.) To bring together productive interest groups and cultivate a more thorough understanding of
environmental and social consequences
5.) To build awareness of interdisciplinary opportunity at Michigan State University and beyond

Interdisciplinary Research

Michigan State University scientists are at the forefront of risk and decision making. Because risk touches so many areas, the researchers studying it come from a broad range of disciplines including engineering, chemistry, microbiology, fisheries, crop and soil sciences, molecular genetics, geology, medicine, zoology, sociology, anthropology, and political science to mention a few. This symposium will foster collaboration between scientists and students for more effective interdisciplinary risk research.

Science and Policy

Effective risk policies will serve as a bridge between cutting edge risk research and science-based decision making. Michigan State University seeks to strengthen the interaction between researchers and policy makers. This symposium will serve as a platform to bring together policy makers and scientist to foster dialogue about the role of collaboration in solving the water problems of the 21st century.

Professional Development

Michigan State University recognizes that professional development is critical for students to succeed as researchers, policy makers, and industry leaders. This symposium will create connections, promote collaborative research, and hone presentation skills. Monetary awards will give additional incentives for students to come together to share research on the forefront of scientific inquiry. Additional opportunities for networking and career development will be provided in one or more special sessions during the symposium.

Keynote Speakers




Time Event Location


Introductory Remarks - Dr. Volodymyr Tarabara, ESPP Associate Director Kellogg Center, Conference


Keynote Speaker - Kellogg Center, Conference
Networking coffee break Kellogg Center, Conference

Student Presentations:

Kellogg Center, Conference
Panel Discussion Kellogg Center, Conference
Professional Development Lunch for Graduate Students Kellogg Center,


Student Presentations:

Student Presentations:

  • "A Water Sustainability Hazard for Michigan's Coastal Communities" by Zachary Curtis
  • "Stormwater Management Monitoring and Development on Michigan State's Campus" by Rebecca Bender
  • "Molecular Measurements from Sediments Cores in Lake St. Clair Linking Pollution and Watershed Management" by Yolanda Brooks
  • "Penotypic and Geotypic Diversity of Pseudomonas and Aeromonas of the Red Cedar River" by Karen Davidge
  • "The Speciation of Copper in Sediment and Water of Copper Mining-Impacted Lake: Role of Dissolved Organic Compounds for Controlling Copper Solubility of Lake" Chaiyanum Tangtong
  • "Phages Metagenome in Activated Sludge Samples" by Mariya Munir
  • "Human and Bovine Viruses and Bacteroides as Microbial Source Tracking Tools in Selected Great Lake Beaches" by Ziqiang Yin
  • "Chlorophyll Concentration Response to Zebra Mussel Invasion in the Great Lakes" by Shengpan Lin

Kellogg Center, Conference Room 104 A & B







Kellogg Center, Room 106

Networking coffee break Kellogg Center, Conference Room 104 A & B

Student Presentations:

Kellogg Center, Conference Room 104 A & B and Room 106

Keynote Speech

Concluding Remarks and Student Awards- Dr. Jinhua Zhao, ESPP Director

Kellogg Center, Conference Room 104 A & B