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CSI is unique opportunity for select faculty members with demonstrated interest or expertise in landscape performance.

The Case Study Investigation (CSI) program allows faculty members to sharpen research skills, build relationships with leading landscape architecture firms, collaborate with peers, and gain exposure in the growing field of landscape performance. Participating students have an unparalleled opportunity to interact with practitioners and gain hands-on experience while receiving substantial training to build research and quantitative skills and gain a deeper understanding of the design and evaluation process.

 

Eligibility

CSI Research Fellow candidates must hold a professor (any rank), instructor/lecturer, or adjunct position at an accredited institution of higher learning. Faculty working in landscape architecture departments are preferred, and the degree/certificate program does not need to be accredited by the Landscape Architectural Accreditation Board (LAAB). LAF will also consider candidates from related fields such as planning, urban design, architecture, and ecology.

 

Funding

Faculty may apply to produce one or two Case Study Briefs through the CSI program. Funding is awarded to academic teams based on the number of projects/case studies:

For one case study

CSI Research Fellow honorarium: $500
Student Research Assistant stipend: $4,500
Maximum F&A: $600 (LAF's Indirect Cost Policy limits overhead to 12%)

For two case studies

CSI Research Fellow honorarium: $1,000
Student Research Assistant stipend: $9,000
Maximum F&A: $1,200 (LAF's Indirect Cost Policy limits overhead to 12%)

 

FACULTY EXPECTATIONS

CSI Research Fellows provide the knowledge base for preparing case studies, expertise in quantifying landscape benefits, and academic rigor. Specifically, the faculty Research Fellows:

  • Lead the CSI team collaborations among faculty, students, and practitioners
  • Work with firms to identify the performance benefits of select landscape projects
  • Develop methods to quantify environmental, social, and economic benefits and coordinate on-site research
  • Oversee the case study preparation process
  • Coordinate with LAF staff and serve as LAF’s liaison to the university for administrative matters
  • Manage the Institutional Review Board (IRB) process through the university (where applicable)
  • Participate in CSI program webinars and iterative case study reviews
  • Present their work during the CSI Finale Webinar in August

CSI Research Fellows are expected to devote 1-5 hours per week from February to May and 5-20 hours per week from June to August to fulfilling the above responsibilities. The exact time commitment depends on the number of case studies (1 or 2), previous experience, the strength of the research assistant, and the availability of information.

 

Student Research Assistants

Each CSI Research Fellow selects a currently-enrolled student to participate in the CSI program as a Research Assistant and work under the Fellow’s direction. Students do not apply directly to the CSI program.

The student should have strong critical thinking, project management, fact finding, and quantitative skills and must be available to participate for the duration of the CSI program. Students should have completed a Research Methods course prior to the start of CSI; master's or PhD students are preferred. The student should also have excellent communication skills and professionalism to work collaboratively with firm liaisons, project stakeholders, and LAF staff. The Student Research Assistants:

  • Gather project information from design firms, clients, site managers, and other sources
  • Assist in identifying potential performance benefits and methods to quantify them
  • Conduct or assist with on-site research including site observations, measurements, and surveys
  • Manage quantitative data and perform calculations
  • Develop the Case Study Brief(s) and Methods Document(s) for deliverable deadlines
  • Participate in CSI program webinars and iterative case study reviews

Student Research Assistants are expected to devote 5-10 hours per week from February to May and 20-40 hours per week from June to August to fulfilling the above responsibilities. The exact time commitment depends on the number of case studies (1 or 2) and the student’s experience and ability.

 

Questions?

Contact Megan Barnes at mbarnes [at] lafoundation.org or 202-331-7070 x15.


Case Study Investigation (CSI)
Overview
CSI Research Fellows
CSI Firms and Projects
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Much of what LAF is able to accomplish would not be possible without the thought leadership and financial investment of our major supporters, including ASLA, which provides over $125,000 of in-kind support annually.

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