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"We are unlikely to achieve anything close to sustainability in any area unless we work for the broader goal of becoming native in the modern world, and that means becoming native to our places in a coherent community that is in turn embedded in the ecological realities of its surrounding landscape."

--Wes Jackson, Becoming Native to This Place

033/169: 040, The Good Society, Fall 2008


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Wild Iowa Essay Project Awardees for 2006


The Iowa Project on Place Studies fosters teaching and research in

• the concept of place,

• the interconnections between places across the globe,

• and local, state, and regional studies

IPOPS also engages in community partnership activities that promote place.

"Place studies" is an emerging interdisciplinary area recognizing the  centrality of natural, built, social, and cultural environments in the formation of individual, group, and communal identity, as well as the ways in which human beings interact with the world.  Although “place” is grounded in local geography, it is also the ground from which humans connect with virtually everything else.  Understanding one’s place, then, involves understanding global ecosystems and economics just as much as the local landscape, community history, and regional arts.

The Iowa Project on Place Studies was founded at The University of Iowa in 2002.  For further information on IPOPS, contact Thomas K. Dean, Director, at, 319-335-1995.


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