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Applied Research Projects

To complement our outreach and engagement, teaching, and training activities, CaRDI academic staff are also involved in applied research. In these federally and state-funded applied research projects, CaRDI staff examine critical issues in community development. We partner with a wide range of on- and off-campus faculty and organizations.  The following is a list of our most recent funded research projects.  For more information, please contact the relevant CaRDI staff members listed.

University-Community Intermediaries: Supporting Informed Decision-Making in a Polarized Context  

Hatch Multi-state Project       
10/1/2015 – 9/30/2020
John Sipple (PI), Robin Blakely-Armitage (co-PI), David Kay (co-PI)

Too many faculty, Extension and outreach efforts involving local officials are based by default on localized experience and ad hoc “learning by doing”. While many such efforts are successful and important, the thin research base on which they rest is at odds with fundamental principles for university education and outreach. Supporting local decision-making with the best available research and evidence-based knowledge, and increasing the return on investment in research and outreach are key proposal goals. Read more about the University-Community Intermediaries project

Understanding the Impacts of Fiscal Stress:  Developing Community-Driven Indicator Models

Smith Lever Project   
10/1/2015 – 9/30/2018
Robin Blakely-Armitage (co-PI), David Kay (co-PI)

Local government services contribute to quality of life. Communities facing fiscal stress need to find effective and informed ways to respond. Community indicators can provide critical information for community leaders. This action research project will work with these leaders to develop locally-relevant indicator models that inform sustainable fiscal decisions and minimize unintended outcomes. Read more about the Understanding the Impacts of Fiscal Stress project

Informing County-Based Economic Development (ED) Decisions: A Scientific Foundation for Strategic Outreach

Hatch-Smith Lever, Integrated Project         
10/1/12 – 9/30/15
Robin Blakely-Armitage (co-PI), David Kay (co-PI)

Decision making processes at all levels—local, state, and national—have become increasingly polarized and contentious. While universities like Cornell offer valuable resources, given this context, how can university researchers and Extension educators help local leaders access, interpret and utilize relevant information with which to address complex, controversial, or even culturally polarized issues? Read more about the Informing County-Based Economic Development Decisions project