The University of Michigan-Flint’s research clusters are an interdisciplinary effort to mobilize the shared strengths of existing academic departments, schools and colleges, together with centers and institutes, to build collaboration in areas of strategic importance for the campus and the region. The clusters are faculty-driven, and connect researchers with expertise in various disciplines to foster the sharing of ideas, scholarly advancement, and inclusivity. Faculty leads have been identified around four themes. Support for the clusters and their activities is provided by the Chancellor’s Office in coordination with ORED and the cluster leadership. Each cluster has developed and will continue to actively develop plans (meetings, seminars, invited speakers, new methods training/development, proposal writing efforts, etc) for connecting researchers with each other, around big challenges, as well as with community and industry partners, and funding agencies.
Aging Research Cluster
The Aging Research Cluster (ARC) is a group of UM-Flint faculty, who, together with students and collaborators, are engaged in aging-focused research with the overarching goals of enhancing our understanding of physical, cognitive, psychological, and socio-economic problems and issues of older adults living in the local area of Flint, Genesee County, and beyond and proposing innovative and feasible solutions to aforementioned problems and issues. Those with questions or with interest in joining this research cluster should contact group leader Allon Goldberg.
Arts & Culture Research Cluster
The Arts and Culture (A+C) Research Cluster was created out of a desire to bring researchers, students, regional cultural institutions, and community organizations together in collaborative partnership. A+C aims to bridge existing gaps in coordination and cultivate new and diverse audiences for the arts. Such a partnership can advance the intellectual and cultural vibrancy of Flint, Michigan, and make an impact on the national cultural landscape. The group will seek collaborative program funding and opportunities, share information and promote artistic and cultural collaborations, elevating the arts and culture of the city of Flint. Those with questions or with interest in joining this research cluster should contact group leader Ben Gaydos.
Racial, Economic, & Environmental Justice Research Cluster
The Racial, Economic, & Environmental Justice (REEJ) Research Cluster will work with the newly established Urban Institute for Racial, Economic, and Environmental Justice to examine racial, economic, and environmental inequalities, engage in transformative research, mobilize community-based efforts and encourage the design of practical social and economic solutions. REEJ’s central aim is coalition building, to remove barriers to success and uncover the ways in which the construct of race (and intersections of other identities with race) has led to cultural and structural disadvantage for Black, Indigenous, and People of Color. Those with questions or with interest in joining this research cluster should contact group leader Toko Oshio.
Urban Sustainability & Environmental Health Research Cluster
The Urban Sustainability & Environmental Health (USEH) Research Cluster will drive scientific research among UM-Flint researchers, practitioners, and students, and their domestic and international partners, on critical urban and environmental health issues, ranging from sustainable and connected communities, to public health policy and resilient ecosystems. USEH hopes to become a focal point for information exchange and cooperation among faculty, graduate students, practitioners, and community partners in order to foster applied research and engage policy issues to improve our understanding of the interfaces among urban-environmental-health systems, and, ultimately, produce usable evidence, resulting from scientific publications and grant-funded projects, policy-makers can use to enhance the health of urban and natural areas. Those with questions or with interest in joining this research cluster should contact group leader Greg Rybarczyk.