2024 Participants

Guy Schaffer is an environmental sociologist who studies community-based approaches to sustainability. He is the author of Composting Utopia: Experimental Infrastructures for Organics Recycling in New York City (2023), published by University of Massachusetts Press. The book describes interactions between community and municipal composting in NYC, and makes a case for the importance of grassroots infrastructure projects for providing alternative visions of the sustainable future.

Guy earned his PhD in Science and Technology Studies from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in 2016. He has served as a lecturer at Rensselaer since 2017, teaching courses on science, technology, and society; environmental sociology; and citizen science, among others. Along with colleagues at RPI, he has been working with community organizations in Troy to develop meaningful opportunities for community-engaged learning in the context of burnout and precarity. Guy currently serves as a Social Science Research Fellow at the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA), where he is building out the state’s capacity to support engaged social science research as part of its energy transition efforts.

He serves on the board of directors of BK ROT, a youth-powered compost project in Brooklyn, NY. He also sits on the Solid Waste Advisory Board in Troy, NY, where he currently lives with his partner and their dog.

Guy will also give the April 4 Hoch Cunningham Environmental Lecture, “Experiments in Utopia: Community Composting and Alternatives to Neoliberal Sustainability.” More information here.

Other participants

Aaron Apostadero, Class of 2024

Matthew Gray, Neighborhood Produce

Grace Liu, Tufts Food Rescue

Daniela Pozos Nicolau, Associate Director, FIRST Resource Center

Kaitlyn Reed, Supervisor for Recycling and Waste Reduction, Tufts Facilities Department (scroll down for bio)

Dano Weisbord, Chief Sustainability Officer and Executive Director of Campus Planning.