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Academic Research Centers that Analyze and Support EJ

Image from the UC Davis website:

The organizations listed below were chosen to illustrate EJ issues at academic research centers for the following reasons:

-They were all formed before 1995, are well established, and have an extensive history of partnerships with communities.

-They emphasize mutually beneficial relationships between students who receive real life education and communities which receive high quality services.

-They explicitly stress their interdisciplinary approach in dealing with EJ issues.


Center for Social and Environmental Justice (CSEJ)
Location and Scale: Washington State University in Vancouver, Canada.
Issue Areas: CSEJ’s primary goal is to involve students and the community in dialogue to address social and EJ issues. The Center is engaged in grant-writing provision and development support to project teams and community groups.
Collaborations: The CSEJ has an interdisciplinary role within Washington State University and works with faculty, departments, and students involved in EJ research. The CSEJ initiates public conversations about EJ and develops partnerships with community groups.

Deep South Center for Environmental Justice (DSCEJ)
Location and Scale: Dillard University in Baton Rouge, LA.
Operated under the auspices of Dillard University in New Orleans
Founded in 1992 in collaborative effort with community environmental groups and universities within the region
Funded primarily by the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (NIEHS), the Ford Foundation, the Public Welfare Foundation, the Midsouth Foundation, and the Rockefeller Philanthropy Advisors
Issue Areas: The Center is convinced that effective research and policy making requires the integration of community experiences with the theoretical knowledge of academics, educators, and researchers.
The DSCEJ’s major goal has been to foster minority leadership in environmental, social, and economic justice along the Mississippi River Corridor.
The Center aims to develop programs that correspond with educational and training needs of specific communities.
Collaborations: The DSCEJ maintains a partnership between communities and several universities in the South. It calls this partnership ‘communiversity’.
Projects Links:
DSCEJ Katrina Survivors Project
DSCEJ Partner Community Profiles

Environmental Justice Project (EJP)
Location and Scale: John Muir Institute of the Environment at University of California, Davis, CA.
Issue Areas: The EJP’s focus is particularly on California’s Central Valley. Little attention has been paid to the Central Valley by researchers, despite developments that adversely affect low-income and minority populations in the area. The EJP aims to:
-Create partnerships between communities in the Central Valley and the University
-Advance state policy analyses that promote EJ
Collaborations: The EJP is engaged with the Community University Research and Action alliance for Justice (CURAJ). CURAJ is a coalition of researchers, legal advocates, and community activists who conduct research focused on issues of race and poverty in the area.
Projects Links:
EJP Research Resources

Environmental Justice Resource Center (EJRC)
Location and Scale: Clark Atlanta University in Atlanta, GA.
The EJRC was founded in 1994
Issue Areas: The Center provides assistance, support, training, and education to low-income and minority populations, students, professionals, and grassroots community leaders to involve them in environmental decision-making.
Collaborations: The Center employs undergraduate and graduate research assistants, and involves faculty from across the university in its work.
Projects Links:
EJRC National Equity and Smart Growth Initiative
EJRC Metropolitan Atlanta Suburban Sprawl and Smart Growth Project
EJRC Atlanta Transportation Equity Project (ATEP)

Environmental Law & Justice Center (ELJC)
Location and Scale: One of the Legal Clinics within Thurgood Marshall School of Law at Texas Southern University in Houston, TX.
The Center was founded in 1994 as a public interest and environmental project
The Center focuses on populations who are disproportionately affected by environmental risk and burdens in Texas and throughout the South
Issue Areas: The ELJC provides services such as: research, training, outreach, educational workshops, and legal representation at state or federal administrative hearings and in court. The Center also offers legal services to low-income and minority communities.
Collaborations: The ELJC employs law students in order to enhance law school education by providing real-life experiences. The center assists community groups and individuals that are affected by EJ issues.

Working Group on Environmental Justice, Harvard University, Cambridge, MA
Location and Scale: Harvard University in Cambridge, MA.
The Working Group was created by the University Provost’s Fund for Interfaculty Collaboration and the University Committee of the Environment
Issue Areas: The objective of the Working Group is to academically discuss EJ through various lenses and in the context of scientific knowledge. Therefore, the Working Group:
Holds monthly meetings of Harvard faculty and invited guests who are engaged in research related to EJ
Develops and maintains a webpage that serves as a resource for EJ reference materials
Organizes periodic workshops on EJ
Collaborations: The Working Group stresses its interdisciplinary approach to understanding and ameliorating EJ problems both domestically and internationally. The Working Group collaborates on an academic level is and mainly research oriented.
The Working Group is an interdisciplinary forum where student and faculty researchers from multiple Harvard Schools [hyperlink to:] exchange their experiences and knowledge
Projects Links:
Document Archive & Reference Series
Research Bibliography Series

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