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WSU researchers, students develop agriculture water monitoring website

Mustard with rainbow

A growing number of fruit and vegetable growers in the Columbia Basin are working with researchers in WSU Extension to find an easier way to track and share data on water quality used for crop irrigation.

“Measuring water quality is important, because it lets growers know the likelihood that the water they are using might be contaminated with a foodborne pathogen,” said Faith Critzer, associate professor and produce safety extension specialist at the WSU Irrigated Agriculture Research and Extension Center in Prosser, Washington.

“By monitoring water quality, we can make educated decisions about risks tied to that source,” Critzer said.

Producers have historically tested their … » More …

Asked and answered: 50 years of survey innovation

Dillman with his book ‘Internet, Phone, Mail and Mixed-Mode Surveys: The Tailored Design Method’

When you open the envelope for your 2020 Decennial Census next year, you will be directed to an online questionnaire inspired by Regents Professor Don Dillman. His extensive research and experimentation with visual design and social exchange theory have led to better user experience, increased response rates and higher quality data from surveys sent out by the U.S. Bureau of the Census, National Science Foundation, Gallup, Nielson, and many more organizations and governments worldwide.

September 16 marks the golden anniversary of Dillman’s dual appointment as a sociology and rural sociology faculty member at Washington State University. Today, he is an internationally renowned survey methodologist known … » More …

Designing cities for the future

Power workers up on a light pole

Measuring urban air quality is one step towards healthier, more sustainable cities

By 2050, 66 percent of the world’s population is projected to live in urban areas. Growing cities strain food, water and energy systems, which in turn has a negative impact on economic, social and environmental sustainability and wellbeing.

To address these challenges, regional governments, companies and universities are coming together to develop the technology and proposed system changes needed for “smarter” cities. An initiative in Spokane called Urbanova is one of the innovators in this movement, and Washington State University is a founding partner.

Urbanova is a living laboratory in Spokane’s University District … » More …