UNC Greensboro is showcased in an Association of Public and Land-grant Universities (APLU) report on accelerating publicly engaged research to help tackle vexing challenges facing communities across the globe. The report, “Modernizing Scholarship for the Public Good: An Action Framework for Public Research Universities,” includes concrete actions public research universities can take in eight key areas to support publicly engaged, equity-oriented, and publicly impactful scholars and scholarship.
“UNCG is highlighted for our continued efforts to integrate community engagement into core institutional infrastructure and networks,” said Dr. Emily Janke, director of UNCG’s Institute for Community and Economic Engagement. “That includes incorporating community engagement into promotion and tenure policies and practices, hosting awards and programs to recognize and celebrate community engaged work, and establishing data collection and reporting structures related to community-engaged work.”
From addressing local economic hardship to promoting public health to mitigating climate change, the vexing challenges facing communities, regions, countries, and the world are increasingly complex. Public research universities are uniquely positioned to engage with communities to tackle these challenges through path-breaking research. UNCG was one of ten case studies in the report.
“UNCG is really a national leader when it comes to identifying and addressing both the drivers of and barriers to quality community engagement,” said Dr. Terri L. Shelton, UNCG vice chancellor for research and engagement. “It’s exciting to share lessons learned from over a decade of supporting community-engaged scholarship in all its breadth and depth.”
Drawing on the expertise and insights from stakeholders and public research university leaders from across the university, years of research, and a deep base of academic literature, APLU outlined eight areas for strategic action that universities can take to support publicly-engaged, equity-oriented and publicly impactful research to benefit society.
“Public research universities have a distinguished history of working with stakeholders across sectors to advance discoveries, innovations, and engagement that push back the frontiers of knowledge and advance solutions to vexing problems,” said APLU President Mark Becker.
In 2021, UNCG was also the winner of the APLU’s national C. Peter Magrath Community Engagement Scholarship Award, and this year, the university received the APLU’s Innovation and Economic Prosperity designation, which acknowledges public research universities working with public and private sector partners in their states and regions to support economic development.
The APLU Office of Food, Agriculture, and Natural Resources, University of Michigan, the Rita Allen Foundation, the Kavli Foundation, and the Burroughs Wellcome Fund all provided support for this work.