UMD: A Globally Connected University

The National Socio-Environmental Synthesis Center

The National Socio-Environmental Synthesis Center (SESYNC) is dedicated to solving the world’s most challenging and complex environmental problems. Led by UMD Entomology Professor Margaret Palmer and Biology Professor Bill Fagan, SESYNC brings together an international community of scholars from diverse disciplines. Located in Annapolis and funded through a National Science Foundation grant, SESYNC facilitates cross-disciplinary research by providing a unique array of support and activities, and a physical collaborative space to accelerate socio-environmental research and synthesis.  SESYNC uses an innovative experimental approach designed to make an impact beyond academic communities. SESYNC tackles problems rooted in the multifaceted relationship between humans and the ecosystems in which we live, which require collaboration amongst natural, social, and computational scientists. A new study by postdoctoral researcher Neil Carter, for example, shows that when Nepalese villagers are empowered to make local land management decisions, the resulting landscape changes can also benefit the local tiger population. Research themes are co-developed among scientists, policymakers, and others to create a body of scholarship that can help solve socio-environmental problems. Learn more.