- 2025 Sustainability Plan
- EDI Statement
The Living Lab facilitates sustainability-themed research at SFU by creating structured collaborations between staff, faculty and graduate students. The program aims to provide opportunities for applied research and experiential learning that improve the sustainability of SFU's three campus communities where we study, work and live.
Call for proposals now open
The call for proposals for the SFU's Living Lab program is now open to graduate students. The Living Lab is offering funding awards of up to $12,500 to support sustainablity-themed research. We invite innovative, creative and solution-based proposals that support the implementation of SFU’s Strategic Sustainability Plan 2020-2025 (SFU 2025).
- Research teams: Each Living Lab research team is made up of one graduate student researcher who will be the research project lead, as well as one faculty member and one staff member in a university operations role. All current SFU graduate students from all faculties are eligible to apply.
- Thematic focus: SFU’s Living Lab is currently supporting the implementation of SFU’s Strategic Sustainability Plan 2020-2025 (SFU 2025) and its targets.
- Knowledge Mobilization and Transfer: Living Lab seeks to support projects that actively engage in knowledge mobilization effort. Research teams are asked to develop ways to share their findings with the university operations and practitioners using methods that are feasible and appropriate.
- All Living Lab projects are required to address EDI and Reconciliation considerations, with action plans developed and implemented throughout the project life cycle.
- All teams have 12 months to complete the project.
All current SFU graduate students are eligible to apply. Please note that in order to continue to receive funding, your registration at SFU must remain current.
Each Living Lab team will be made up of one graduate student researcher who will be conducting the research with, at minimum, one faculty member and one staff member. The graduate student researcher is expected to be the lead for the project, and as such, the Living Lab funding will go directly to the student.
Living Lab thematic focus
We welcome proposals addressing the following SFU 2025 Targets as key research areas. Project proposal may address multiple targets.
|SFU 2025 Target||SFU Department|
|Target 1: Building and fleet||Reduce operational GHG emissions by 50%||Facilities|
|Target 2: Renewable energy||Shift 50% of the fossil-fuel based energy to renewables||Facilities|
|Target 3: Transportation||Reduce transportation GHG emissions by 10% by 2025 (commuting, campus-to-campus transportation, on campus transportation)||Ancillary|
|Target 4: Procurement and waste||Reduce operational waste by 10% despite growth, expansion, and construction||Facilities, Ancillary|
|Target 5 & 6: Food choices and Food waste||Increase the amount of plant-based menu items by 50% by 2025; Reduce total food waste by 10%||Ancillary|
Additionally, we welcome projects from all disciplines that employ a wide range of methods (quantitative, qualitative or mixed) and are designed to implement innovative sustainability solutions.
For more information on the SFU 2025 targets, view SFU’s Strategic Sustainability Plan 2020-2025 (SFU 2025).
A successful Living Lab Scholar — a graduate student researcher carrying out the Living Lab research — will receive a $10,000 stipend and will be able to access an additional $2,500 to be put towards research costs. Examples of eligible costs include materials and equipment purchase as well as consultations and research assistance that are directly related to the project. The funding is for all projects to be completed within 12 months.
Submit your research proposal
Applications need to include the following documents and meet the selection criteria to be considered for approval and funding:
- Living Lab application form
- Living Lab application checklist
- Letter of intent (maximum 3 pages) addressing the selection criteria (details can be found in CFP) and containing a brief project plan with a monthly timeline (12 months)
- The application should include information on the timeline with a monthly breakdown. The projects should take place over the course of a year and all projects must begin no later than February 1, 2022.
- Support letter from faculty supervisor: One letter from the academic supervisor or Living Lab team member will suffice
- Student’s curriculum vitae
The deadline to submit research proposals is November 11, 2021. No late submissions will be considered.
Research Ideas from SFU Staff
If you are a researcher and would like to meet SFU staff to discuss Living Lab research ideas, please contact Kilim Park (firstname.lastname@example.org).
|"You're not truly recycling until the products you purchase are made from recycled material"||Todd Gattinger||Facilities|
|Building insulation/heat loss||Dan Cooper||Facilities|
|Building standards: Which one should SFU pursue?||Bernard Chan||Facilities|
|Carbon capture for Corix||Jaelim Jeon||Facilities|
|Carbon Pricing: $150 a tonne via Metro Vancouver - could SFU have its own internal policy/pricing?||Bernard Chan||Facilities|
|Community vibrancy||Sid Mehta||Ancillary|
|Corix exploration||Todd Gattinger||Facilities|
|Corix: What happens inside that blue box?||Gerald Gongos||Facilities|
|Drought tolerant plants||Dan Cooper||Facilities|
|Energy studies for campus buildings||Bernard Chan||Facilities|
|Feasibility study for a solar project based on data and uses across campus||Jaelim Jeon||Facilities|
|Food options on campus (beyond pasta bar and vegan options)||Dan Traviss/Simon Tse||Ancillary|
|Goal of 40% EVs for Fleet by 2030: How to achieve this||George Venini/Dan Cooper||Facilities|
|Increasing composting compliance via behaviour change/signage||Grady Ott/Todd Gattinger||Facilities|
|Fleet electrification: Research into the behavioural economics and business research side||David Agosti||Ancillary|
|Mobility on campus||David Agosti||Facilities|
|Natural shaded (trees/landscaping) areas inventory/map on campus||Dan Cooper||Facilities|
|Onsite composting: What scale is possible at SFU versus trucking off mountain||George Venini||Facilities|
|Plant-based options & transition||Dan Traviss||Ancillary|
|Public transit needs||David Agosti||Ancillary|
|Remote work vs commuting (Environmental impact)||Ayumi Orgar||Ancillary|
|Research feasibility for onsite renewable energy||Michelle Lin||Facilities|
|Strategic Energy Management Planning (SEMP)||Bernard Chan||Facilities|
|Transit prices versus parking/driving prices||David Agosti||Ancillary|
|Transitioning back to reusables (Pre-covid)||Sid Mehta||Ancillary|
|Transportation data baselining||David Agosti||Ancillary|
|Understanding inverted roofs||Dan Cooper||Facilities|
|Utilizing sawdust from carpentry for Corix||Bernard Chan||Facilities|
|Waste management||Dan Cooper||Facilities|
|Waste management of plastics||Michelle Lin||Facilities|
Living Lab Advisory Committee Members
- Lupin Battersby (Knowledge Mobilization Officer)
- Nastenka Calle Delgado (SFU Program Manager, PICS)
- Dan Cooper (Associate Director, Buildings & Grounds, Facilities)
- John Clague (Professor Emeritus, Department of Earth Sciences)
- Gretchen Ferguson (Director, Global Engagement, SFU International)
- Simon Ford (Academic Director, Undergraduate Minor; Senior Lecturer, Innovation and Entrepreneurship, Beedie School of Business)
- Maya Gislason (Assistant Professor, Faculty of Health Sciences)
- Anil Hira (Professor, Department of Political Science)
- Gordon McTaggart-Cowan (Associate Professor, School of Sustainable Energy Engineering)
- Sid Mehta (Senior Director, Ancillary Services)
- David Zandvliet (Professor, Faculty of Education)
Please note that committee members are allowed to submit proposals and will be asked to recuse themselves from the evaluation of their proposals.
The Living Lab is funded by SFU’s Office of the Vice-President, Research and International (VPRI), Office of the Vice-President Finance and Administration (VPFA), and Pacific Institute for Climate Solutions (PICS).
For more information, please contact email@example.com