Household Food Waste: If you Build it, Will they Separate?
I collaborated with the Costa Mesa Sanitary District to conduct a longitudinal repeated-measure field experiment to examine how households are affected by new curbside organics collection programs and whether social innovations informed by social psychology effectively improve participation.
Click on the button below to read the Final Report prepared for the Board of Directors:
Local Food Access and Advocacy
This project sought to engage students and the community with food systems, access, and research in and around UCI. Inspired by the relocation of the most successful farmer's market in the county that serves the UCI community, components of this project included:
-conducting a stakeholder assessment before and after the move,
-hosting a public forum about concerns and opportunities in the new location,
-compiling a brief on how universities can link learning with federal programs to improve financial access to food at farmer's markets,
-hosting a workshop on Cultivating Food Research Community at UCI.
Major project goals:
1) Promote stakeholder participation,
2) Understand how relocation affects access to local food for students and community members and engage students with local food providers, and
3) Empower advocate scholars on food issues.
This project was supported by the UC Global Food Initiative Fellowship.
Visit the University of California Office of the President website for more information.
Processes to achieve goals:
A) A Public Forum engaging community members, and leadership in the university, farmer's market, and new market hosts on the impacts of and opportunities in the relocation of the farmer's market.
B) Conduct and Analyze a Market-Goer Survey before and after the relocation of the Irvine Farmer's Market.
C) A Workshop creating an intimate space for contributing to the growing food discourse to understand the relationship between UCI food research and communities. Participants from across disciplines, including Informatics, Public Health, Criminology, Earth System Sciences, Anthropology, and Medicine, engaged in an edible marsh tour at the UCI Arboretum and learned about one of the country's largest aquaponics systems.
Expanding Organics Recovery to On-Campus Apartment Communities
The inaugural project of the Food Works Lab sought to expand food scrap separation to on-campus apartment communities and explored the intersection of household behavior and pro-environmental infrastructure. In my capacity as Director of the Food Works Lab, I initiated a partnership between the Lab, UCI Facilities, and the Verano Housing Office to offer household organics recovery in the Verano Place Graduate Housing Community. Together, the collaborative recruited 30 households and established two community drop bins for the collection of household food scraps.