Grozinger has been serving as the center’s director for the past 10 years. Her research focuses on understanding the biology, behavior and health of honey bees, bumble bees and other bee species. The mission of the Center for Pollinator Research is to develop and implement integrative, multidisciplinary approaches to improving pollinator health, conservation and management through research, education, outreach and policy. Recently, the center expanded to include an Insect Biodiversity Center to broadly study insect populations in response to published reports of large-scale global declines in populations.
“Using the information generated by Insect Biodiversity Center collaborations, we plan to empower the broader public to engage in practices and actions they can take to recognize and mitigate biodiversity declines within their local communities," said Grozinger.
Grozinger and her team have been working with colleagues from multiple disciplines, including engineers to develop more effective tracking and monitoring systems for insect populations, geographers to map and describe changes in land use and climate at a fine scale, data scientists to model how pollinator and other insect species respond to these changes.
Paul Shrivastava, Penn State’s chief sustainability officer and director of the Sustainability Institute, said, “Christina Grozinger is a star addition to our team. We are very excited to work with her on sustainability issues broadly of interest in the College of Agricultural Sciences.”
One of Grozinger’s initiatives as scholar-in-residence is to develop a symposium for spring 2021, “Mainstreaming Biodiversity in the Decade of Action.” The symposium will highlight Penn State research programs on biodiversity and its drivers in urban, agricultural and natural ecosystems. Stakeholders will have the opportunity to learn about various Penn-State led efforts on developing new tools and approaches to studying biodiversity and studying communication systems that help adopt and expand biodiversity.
Grozinger said, “I hope to use this information, and the insights we gain from the symposium, to help individuals from across colleges and campuses find novel approaches to partner with each other and with the public, policymakers, and stakeholder groups to develop integrative research, education, and outreach programs that both study and promote biodiversity, in Pennsylvania and beyond.”
The staff at the Sustainability Institute are enthusiastic about working with Christina and being able to see her knowledge and expertise in action.
“We feel that Christina is an excellent choice for this initiative and are thrilled that she has agreed to work with us,” said Mary Easterling, associate director of analysis and assessment. “She is well respected and recognized as a scholar in pollinator research — an area that represents a current sustainability challenge — and she has a track record of engaging external stakeholders in defining research problems and finding solutions — exactly the type of research we'd like to encourage.”