Elizabeth Marino, OSU-Cascades (Bend, OR): The Social Infrastructure of a Sustainable Campus: Looking forward at OSU-Cascades
OSU- Cascades has set sustainability as a critical goal and ethos of the new 4-year campus, now in development. As part of this ethos, the sustainability center at OSU-Cascades includes both natural scientists and social scientists. While initial development of the 4-year campus incorporates goals for net zero carbon, water, and energy, the social dimensions of sustainability are difficult to define and, therefore, challenging to operationalize. Added to this basic challenge, campus community members and stakeholders often see social justice and diversity discussions and sustainability discussions as parallel, but not intersecting, goals. These parallel discussions therefore have unconnected committees, administrative infrastructure, and occupy different positions within the university conversation. This paper seeks to demonstrate that sustainability principles were initially developed to integrate disperse environmental movements with movements in social justice. Building off of the history of sustainability, this paper will discuss possible ways to merge sustainability goals with other social justice goals happening within a university context and ways in which infrastructure and community organization could assist merging these divergent goals.