Confronting grand social challenges with humanities

ASU Humanities Lab Regents' Professor Sally Kitch launched the ASU Humanities Lab in 2017 to engage students of all disciplines with real-world problems. Kitch, a distinguished sustainability scientist in the Julie Ann Wrigley Global Institute of Sustainability, previously served as founding director of the faculty-oriented Institute for Humanities Research (IHR). “I started the Humanities Lab because I realized that our students were not benefitting from the kind of interdisciplinary, exploratory experiences faculty were getting through the IHR,” she said. “So I wanted to see if we could establish a way for students to get that experience — to recognize the humanities as important for approaching and addressing today’s challenges, because the kinds of questions that really plague us are humanistic at their core." Three labs are being offered through the spring 2019 semester: "Building Puerto Rico," “The Future of Cars” and “Facing Immigration.” "Building Puerto Rico" is led by Senior Sustainability Scientist José Lobo, an associate research professor in the School of Sustainability, and Senior Sustainability Scholar Elizabeth Brake, an associate professor of philosophy in the School of Historical, Philosophical and Religious Studies. An instructor of “The Future of Cars” is also associated with the ASU Wrigley Institute: Senior Sustainability Scientist Thaddeus Miller, an assistant professor in the School for the Future of Innovation in Society. Read more about the Humanities Lab in ASU Now.