Research themes

  

Health and ecology

We research the health of human and ecological systems, including water and food system safety, atmospheric quality, and ecosystem sustainability. From urban farming to sediment transport, invasive species detection, water quality testing and emissions modeling, we examine current conditions and project future possibilities for sustaining healthy systems.


Water use

Human activities place demand on water resources, which in turn affects water management, system health, and the need for innovation. We study the use of water by municipal, commercial and industrial systems in real time and with cutting-edge technology, to identify opportunities for cost-effective sustainable improvements. Our field stations at Lake St. Clair Metropark, the Belle Isle Aquarium, and the Detroit Water and Sewerage Department enable us to study natural and built water systems representing a broad spectrum of Great Lakes activity.


Innovation and education

We believe that sound science should drive the development of new technologies and effective education strategies to ensure a sustainable future for our water resources. Our multidisciplinary work has led to new methods to distribute water more sustainably, technology to detect invasive species in ship ballast water, and technology that extends the power to reduce air emissions to energy users. We use these innovations to inspire meaningful, hands-on experiences to educate everyone from grade school students to professional water resource practitioners.


Watershed management

Decision-makers, planners and educators are integral to the implementation of long-term strategies for sustaining healthy urban waters. We bring together researchers across all disciplines to examine questions on the forefront of water policy development. In sharing ideas across the physical and behavioral sciences, education, law, business, and the arts, opportunities and partnerships emerge that promote a sustainable human connection to water resources.


Watershed policy

Decision-makers, planners and educators are integral to the implementation of long-term strategies for sustaining healthy urban waters. We bring together researchers across all disciplines to examine questions on the forefront of water policy development. In sharing ideas across the physical and behavioral sciences, education, law, business, and the arts, opportunities and partnerships emerge that promote a sustainable human connection to water resources.