• Research

    The Tishman Environment and Design Center fosters the integration of design, policy, and social justice to approach critical environmental issues. At the heart of the center are students, faculty, and staff across The New School who are committed to using their work to advance sustainability on campus and in our extended communities. Together we are a hub for innovative thinking and action toward sustainability. 

    Tishman Environment and Design Center Faculty Grants

    The Tishman Environment and Design Center supports innovative interdisciplinary research that advances the concept of climate citizenship with a core focus on social justice, climate change, and urban systems. This annual competitive grant is open to both full-time and part-time faculty and emphasizes interdisciplinary research, creation of practice and service opportunities for students, and community engagement. Project proposals should be designed to address critical environmental issues generated by the impacts of climate change and other environmental threats to community well-being and social justice. Grants may be awarded to support new or ongoing projects.

  • Funding Eligibility

    Winning proposals are eligible to receive up to $10,000 in funding. Project proposals should explore critical environmental issues through one or all of the three TEDC perspectives of design, public policy, and social justice. Successful project proposals will include characteristics such as 

    • Fostering increased collaboration between New School faculty members across schools and programs in an effort to promote TEDC’s interdisciplinary approach to research and practice
    • Establishing or promoting partnerships between external community-based partners and New School faculty and students in addressing critical environmental issues
    • Expecting or having the potential to receive external funding for continued implementation, for which the TEDC Faculty Grant funding can serve either as seed funding or a matching grant
    • Having the potential to be sustained beyond the project grant period through applied research and knowledge production in partnership with TEDC
    • Supporting student involvement in the form of research assistantships


    This funding opportunity is open to full-time faculty (including tenured, tenure track, and renewable term appointments) and part-time faculty (with annual appointments or a minimum of four semesters of classroom appointments). Completed projects must have clear deliverables and outcomes that are publicly available in the form of a final report at the end of the grant period as well as a public presentation. 



    Application Process

    Grants will be made for the 2016-2017 academic year and will begin in summer 2016. Applications are due March 31, 2016, and should be submitted to  tedc@newschool.edu. For questions, please contact Molly Craft Johnson at 212.229.5321 x1463 or  molly@newschool.edu. Grantees will be announced at TEDC’s Earth Day Celebration on April 20, 2016.

    An interdisciplinary panel of TEDC-affiliated faculty will conduct an initial review of the applications received before selecting a group of finalists. Finalists may be asked to provide more detailed information about their project proposals.

    Please submit the following

    • Completed application form 
    • CV for each applicant
    • Line-item budget
    • Budget narrative
    • Support letter  (at least one support letter must be submitted with an application)

    2016-2017 Faculty Grant Recipients

    2016-2017 Tishman Environment and Design Center Faculty Grant Winners and their projects:

    Tanya Kalmanovitch, Associate Professor at Mannes School of Music

    Project: "The Tar Sands Song Book" will be a collection of at least 15 new open-form compositions and an interdisciplinary performance project that make the impact of tar sands development visible and audible from multiple perspectives.

    Brian McGrath, Dean, School of Constructed Environments, Parsons School of Design and Mehdi Salehi, Part-time Lecturer, School of Art, Media, and Technology, Parsons School of Design

    Project: “Drones for Refugees” is a drones monitoring system ensuring the safe arrival of refugees. Since 2015 the EU has received more than 1.2 million refugees mostly from Syria, Afghanistan and Iraq. Over the past 2 years an estimated 8,000 people have lost their lives trying to cross into Europe. Drones for Refugees aims to support their safe arrival.

    Wendy Popp, Part-time Assistant Professor, BFA Illustration Program, Parsons School of Design

    Project: “Beyond the Polar Bears: Alternative Visuals for existing social media platforms that communicate to new audiences about climate change” will collaborate with 350.org to provide visual ideas with which to connect the public and college audiences with engaging digital storytelling artworks that help communicate key climate messages.

    Stephen Metts, Part-time Lecturer, Milano School of International Affairs, Management, and Urban Policy 

    Project: “Mobilizing Maps for Sustainable Communities” seeks to build a robust open source mapping resource for local community members in their opposition to further expansion of natural gas infrastructure.

    Barent Roth, Part-time Lecturer, BFA Integrated Design Program, Parsons School of Design.

    Project: “Testing the Waters” will refine, design and develop 2­3 low cost trawls pulling a floating device with a net on the water’s surface to gather data about plastic pollution in the Earth’s oceans.

    Fabio Parasecoli, Associate Professor and Coordinator of Food Studies, Schools of Public Engagement and Rachel Knopf, Assistant Director of Wellness and Health, Student Health Services.

    Project: “Urban Food Security in Context:  the Lived Experience of Hunger at The New School” will focus on issues of food security at different levels: the students’ awareness of the needs of their food insecure peers, the functioning of food banks from a strategic and service design point of view, the systems and social hierarchies that affect food insecurity, and the impact of food policy on urban environments.

    Ivan Ramirez, Assistant Professor of Environmental Health, Eugene Lang College of Liberal Arts

    Project: “Addressing Environmental Health Risks through Community Action Research and Local Knowledge: Pilot Study in Williamsburg and Greenpoint, Brooklyn” will seek to understand how climate variability, extremes and changes interact with social dynamics to impact the health of residents in New York City, particularly communities of color and socioeconomically poor populations. 

    2015-2016 Faculty Grant Recipients

    2015-2016 Tishman Environment and Design Center Faculty Grant recipients and their projects are:


    Willi Semmler, Arnhold Professor of International Cooperation and Development at The New School for Social Research


    Project: "Mitigation and Adaptation Policies against Climate Risk" will research and develop a better way to address the trade-off of implementing climate stability at the expense of economic growth.


    Ivan Ramirez, Assistant Professor of Environmental Health at Eugene Lang College


    Project: "Understanding Climate Change and Urban Health using a Syndemic Modeling Approach" will examine the effects of climate change on health vulnerability and resilience in urban areas.


    Timon McPhearson, Assistant Professor of Urban Ecology and Chair of the Environmental Studies Program at the Schools of Public Engagement


    Project: "Connect the Dots" aims to connect fragmented green spaces to form an ecological network in New York City.


    TImo Rissanen, Assistant Professor of Fashion Design at Parsons School of Design


    Project: "Designing Endurance" will focus on garment repair and alterations through a series of shirts that have future repairability and alterability built into them.


    Ana I. Baptista, Assistant Professor in the Environmental Policy and Sustainability Management Program at the Milano School of International Affairs, Management, and Urban Policy.


    Project: "Climate Justice: Case Studies of Civil Society in Action" will explore poverty alleviation and climate resiliency through composing case studies to address climate crisis from a climate justice perspective.


    Nicholas Brinen, Assistant Professor of Interior Design at Parsons


    Project: "Street Seats Program" will work with the Department of Transportation to reclaim portions of New York City's streets to serve as public space.