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SWEET Co(LAB)orative

The SWEET Col(LAB)orative is an environmental studies research group who often, but not always, use insects as a lens onto broader systems. We use a range of quantitative and qualitative tools to study science and society. Global environmental problems necessitate a diverse group of minds, bodies, and lives coming together to imagine (and then achieve!) conserving and sustaining natural and human communities in ethical ways. This work is interdisciplinary and done in community, with a wide range of collaborators across disciplines and institutions. 

We do this while also working to: 

  • create space to be our full(er) selves,
  • address positionality and power in our research and teams,
  • do "open" research without extraction. 

We are located on unceded Seneca Nations (Onöndowa'ga) lands. Learn more here.

Latest News

  • November 16, 2023
    decorative photo of a student walking in a roadside
    final report online

    The final report for roadside research focused on the impacts of reduced mowing on pollinating insects and vegetation, led by Dr. Stack Whitney in collaboration with many current and former student colleagues, conducted 2019 through 2022 is now online. Read it here.

  • November 5, 2023
    two people in dark clothes and glasses (Maddie and Rodhy) smile at the camera, standing with their research poster between them
    col(LAB) students present at RAS conference

    Maddie, Rodhy, Erika, and Hannah all presented research in progress at the Rochester Academy of Sciences annual paper session, held November 4 at RIT. Great job! Learn more about the RAS annual conference here.

  • October 20, 2023
    decorative image of RIT logo
    congrats to Erika on Aberg fellowship

    Col(LAB) member Erika has been awarded the Fall 2023 RIT STS Aberg fellowship, to continue their research and present at several upcoming conferences. Congratulations, Erika! Learn more about the STS Department Aberg fellowship here.

  • October 17, 2023
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    new media coverage

    Nature News has written about the reproducibility study, Many EcoEvo Analysts, that Dr. Stack Whitney is a co-author on. The study is currently under review. Read the news article here and the preprint here.


Photo of research team in field
Environmental dimensions of transportation systems

We are interested in the interplay between policy, bureaucracy, and animals at landscape scales. Our focus is always in systems with human communities, currently with a focus on highways and roadside rights-of-way.

A deer
Critical examinations of ecosystem services

Environmental science is a human endeavor, shaped by individual and institutional structures, processes, and biases. Part of my research program centers on understanding how these factors shape contemporary ecosystem service sciences.

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Ableism and accessibility in biology and society

In fieldwork and informatics based work, SWEET is committed to inclusion, accessibility, and reproducibility. In particular, we focus on disability access and inclusion (or lack thereof) in open science and beyond.


decorative image of Dr. Stack Whitney holding a box of pinned insects
Dr. Kaitlin Stack Whitney
Close head shot of Dr. Kristoffer Whitney
Dr. Kristoffer Whitney
Close up of plant leaves

Join the SWEET Col(LAB)orative

Undergraduate students

Students of all majors and years are welcome to explore research opportunities in the lab. We welcome curious, collaborative, and enthusiastic learners and leaders - no discipline-specific experience or expertise is required! 

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