Welcome to the blog of the Department of Environmental and Geographical Sciences at the University of Northampton. This will keep you up to date with both student and staff activities.

The Department of Environmental and Geographical Sciences includes staff with interests in biological sciences, conservation, ecology, environmental sciences, environmental statistics, geography and waste management. We offer a range of degree programmes and have a number of postgraduate research students. For more information about studying with us please visit http://www.northampton.ac.uk/.

Monday, 6 November 2017

Geography students are giving older people a helping hand to keep warm this winter

Second years on the Human Geography course have collected 53 pairs of gloves to donate to charity Age UK Northamptonshire, which urgently needs warm clothes for isolated older people in the county.
Students and Prof John Horton modelling some of the gloves donated
The partnership with Age UK came about when the students began exploring research about experiences of poverty and social exclusion in the UK.

Jo Gunnett, Volunteer Coordinator for Age UK Northamptonshire, visited the group to talk about the charity’s work in local communities. Age UK Northamptonshire provides a wide range of services for people in later life, including many who live in situations of chronic poverty and isolation.

Jo also outlined opportunities for students to take part in fundraising and volunteering activities in support of the charity. In response, the Students’ Union Geography Society is planning two fundraisers – a pancake evening for society members, followed by a larger event for students in the spring.

Jo Gunnett from Age UK Northamptonshire, with Prof John Horton

Geography Society president, Gabriella Dyche, said: “When Jo from Age UK explained the situation many older people can find themselves in, it was a real eye-opener for us.

“We were determined to do something to help, and the glove collection is the first of a series of initiatives we are organising.”

For more details about Age UK, visit the website.

This story was first published here.

Thursday, 2 November 2017

University launches Living Lab to help tackle sustainability issues in the local community

A project which connects researchers to members of the local community in a bid to address and tackle sustainability issues has been launched by the University of Northampton, which will further strengthen its commitment to social impact and being a Changemaker Campus.

The Living Lab is a virtual space in which partnerships of researchers, students, external partners, and communities, collaborate to test new technologies, services, products or systems in real-life contexts, with the aim of improving community or environmental outcomes.

It will focus on sustainability across all four of the University's Changemaker Challenges and will develop new relationships, connections and ways of working. It will also provide a framework in which the University can scale its social impact and ensure that local communities are at the heart of its efforts to overcome particular issues that may arise.

Dr Joanna Wright, Senior Lecturer in Physical Geography and Environmental Science, who is leading on the Living Lab, commented "Living Labs have a strong presence in Higher Education and have produced significant opportunities for staff, students and communities, to not only engage in research but to address real issues that affect their lives.

"Linking our Living Lab to the University's strategic Changemaker Challenges provides us with a fantastic opportunity to deliver a Living Lab that is unique in the UK."

Joanna is very keen to involve colleagues from across the University, so if you would like more information, or are interested in getting involved with the Living Lab please email Joanna.Wright@northampton.ac.uk

This article was first published here.