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Post-doctoral fellows named to sustainability center
Author: David Santen, Office of University Communications
Posted: May 26, 2009

(Portland, Ore.) May 26, 2009 – The Center for Sustainable Processes and Practices at Portland State University has awarded its first three post-doctoral fellowships in sustainability, to begin in the 2009-2010 academic year.

The Center’s post-doctoral fellowship program is designed to support PSU initiatives in sustainability by attracting recent doctoral program graduates who have demonstrated both intellectual distinction in prior academic work and a proposal that reflects relevant and significant research to be conducted at Portland State.

Post-doctoral fellows are selected through a competitive application process and receive one-year appointments to the Center for Sustainable Processes and Practices (with the possibility of a one-year renewal). Each will be advancing their personal research programs in collaboration with PSU faculty members. Fellowship recipients receive a stipend and are supported in part by a 10-year, $25 million matching grant by the James F. and Marion L. Miller Foundation. For more information on the program, visit
2009-2010 Post-Doctoral Appointments
Il-won Jung, a native of Mungyeong, South Korea, earned a Ph.D. in hydrometeorology from Sejong University (Seoul, South Korea), and is currently a visiting research assistant professor in PSU’s Department of Geography. Jung will work with Heejung Chang, associate geography professor, on a project, “Quantifying hydrologic uncertainty in climate change impacts and developing adaptive regional water management in Willamette River basin.”

Jung’s research will work to quantify the potential impact of climate change on water resources in the Willamette River basin, and to develop and adapt regional water management plans that reflect increasing climate uncertainty.

Renee Lertzman is a doctoral candidate in Social Science at the Cardiff School of Social Sciences, Cardiff University, Wales, and a fellow with the Chicago-based Biodiversity Project. The Santa Clara, Calif.-native will work with Jan Haaken, a professor in PSU’s Department of Psychology, and Leerom Medovoi, an associate professor in PSU’s Department of English and director of the Portland Center for Public Humanities at PSU, on a project entitled, “From Apathy to Agency: A Psychosocial Study of Transition PDX.”

Lertzman’s study will tackle long-standing issues around environmental communications and outreach that hamper effective responses to issues such as climate change and ecological degradation that require public involvement. She will also investigate how emerging forms of civic engagement and communications practices in community-based initiatives like Transition PDX, a local offshoot of the Transition Town sustainable communities movement, can find success.
Dehui Wei, a native of Jinzhou, China, and a candidate for a regional planning Ph.D. degree from Cornell University, will work with Connie Ozawa, professor in the Nohad A. Toulan School of Urban Studies and Planning and co-director of the PSU-China Innovations in Urbanization Program, where Wei is currently a program associate.

Wei’s proposal, “Sustainable Urban Planning: From Portland to China,” will evaluate sustainable practices successfully employed in the Portland region for potential application in rapidly urbanizing areas of China. Working with Chinese researchers and practitioners, Wei will also study differences—and similarities—in the meaning of “sustainability” from Chinese and U.S. perspectives.

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By: David Santen, Office of University Communications, Portland State University | 503-725-8765

Source: Jennifer Allen, Center for Sustainable Processes and Practices, Portland State University | 503-725-8546

For Immediate Release (#09-020)