Apply for a Grant

Hixon Student Fellowships - Applications due March 5, 2023

Grant funding ($7,500 max each) will be awarded competitively to Yale School of the Environment students interested in conducting research that bridges science to practice. The Hixon Center aims to link science to applications that can inform and improve management practices and decision-making that improve the sustainability of urban areas. Thus, fellowship proposals should emphasize the focus of this nexus with a significant portion of fellowship devoted to achieving this goal. 

Applicants can apply to one of two opportunities.  Four Fellowships will be awarded in each funding pool. One cohort is specifically allocated to support urban forestry related research.  The second cohort is open-ended to fund urban research which applicants identify as a priority urban issue. 

Urban Research Cohort: Research topics for this pool are unrestricted with the caveat that applicants make a compelling proposal of research that will provide scientific evidence and guidance to manage cities more sustainably.

Urban Forestry Cohort: This pool is specifically for applied research projects that provide practitioners actionable management outcomes. Examples include, but are not limited to:

  • Research-based management strategies for urban forestry to mitigate UHI

  • Engineering approaches to maximize green infrastructure solutions to alleviate stormwater runoff 

  • Governance mechanisms to maximize inclusive approaches to urban forestry management to address environmental injustices

  • Planning strategies to manage street trees and multi-modal transit needs for health and safety

Possible Faculty Advisors for the Urban Forestry Cohort include: Dr. Karen Seto, Dr. Sara Kuebbing, Dr. Mark Ashton, Dr. Mark Bradford, Dr. Amity Doolittle, Dr. Marlyse Duguid, and Dr. Morgan Grove.

Funds for Hixon Fellowships are intended to support full-time summer research endeavors.

In support of the project during the fall 2023 term, students must take a 3-credit project course to complete their research/project manuscript. Projects must be completed by mid-December 2023. The award will be provided in 3 installments: 50% upon acceptance of the proposal; 25% upon enrollment in the project course in September; and the final 25% upon completion of the project course, and receipt of an abstract and of a minimum 10-page final report (which will be published on the Hixon website).

Application Submission Guidelines: Proposals should include maximum 3-page narrative, budget and identify a faculty advisor, who should send a one paragraph letter of support indicating willingness to guide your research including the summer field season and the fall project course. The student’s narrative should describe the project, including methods, and any hypotheses to be tested in the case of research proposals. Proposals must include an explicit outreach component to share your research results with the public, such as a podcast, Op-Ed, practitioner tool or other deliverable. Applications should make it clear how the project is mainly urban, especially in cases where study sites are not entirely within cities. Budgets can include reasonable living costs but should not contain salaries for assistants.

Our evaluation criteria will assess: 1) research design; 2) justification (importance of research); 3) feasibility (applicant’s preparation in theory and methods; logistical planning and timetable); and 4) how applicants research will be shared with the public. Please direct proposals to by 4:00 pm on March 5, 2023. Applicants are strongly encouraged to attend presentations by the 2022 Fellows on February 10 at 10:30 a.m. in Kroon 319. Successful applicants will be notified by March 17, 2023. Please contact Colleen Murphy-Dunning (203-432-6570) with any questions.

Potential (but not limited to) Urban Forestry Research Collaborators

NEW OPPORTUNITY: Summer Geospatial Research Assistantships in EJ and Urban Vegetation Mapping

Urban vegetation is effective for mitigating the urban heat island effect and to improve physical and mental health of environmental justice (EJ) communities. This NASA project will map urban vegetation canopy cover and monitor urban heat island to advance environmental justice for the city of New Haven and the state of Connecticut. The project will combine satellite imagery, airborne imagery, GIS data, and socioeconomic data to develop geospatial products and tools for policy makers at city and state levels. The project will also investigate the cooling effect of urban vegetation and the socioeconomic drivers of urban greenspace and urban heat island effect.

Research Assistants will collect geospatial training data to help train machine learning models to map land cover and land use, interpret satellite time series, gather and compile tree survey data and temperature data, and conduct statistical data analysis.

This is an opportunity for students to develop or improve their geospatial skills as well as work with researchers and stakeholders who will use the data results. Office space with computers will be provided to the RAs. The position requires partly in-person work at the Yale School of the Environment and a minimum of 20 hours per week for at least 8 weeks in the summer. Funding is available for up to 40 hours/week. Compensation is commensurate with experience and skills and ranges from $15.00 to $16.25/hour.

Requisite Skills and Qualifications

Preferred skills: remote sensing (Google Earth Engine), GIS (ArcGIS, QGIS) and statistics (R or python).

Please send your CV and a brief cover letter including why you are interested in the position to Dr. Shijuan Chen (