Off-Campus Organizations

The Chicago Wilderness Coalition consists of public and private groups and institutions dedicated to study, protect and maintain the rich biological diversity of the Chicago region. Northwestern University is a member of the coalition.

The Midewin National Tallgrass Prairie is the former Joliet Arsenal land and is being restored to native habitat. While the U.S. Forest Service manages the Prairie, the success of this undertaking is dependent on volunteered efforts of many groups, including Northwestern students.

The Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore is where the science of ecology had important beginnings. Northwestern students have opportunities with the national park itself, and also with the U.S. Geological Survey ecology research group located at the Dunes.

The Center for Neighborhood Technology is a national leader in promoting urban sustainability. CNT is a creative think-and-do tank that works across disciplines and issues, including transportation and community development, energy, natural resources, and climate change.

The Chicago Botanic Gardens is also a research institution with a global reach. With the new Chicago Botanic Garden-Northwestern University joint degree program in Plant Biology and Conservation, there are going to be increased opportunities for Northwestern students with the Botanic Gardens.

The North Central Research Station is a social science research group primarily devoted to research on natural environments for urban populations. Researchers from the Station are adjunct faculty in WCAS and teach courses in EPC.

Argonne National Laboratory is one of the premier DOE national laboratories. While it is primarily known for energy research, Argonne is also a center for critical environmental research.

Brookfield Zoo is a research zoo. It plays a major role in global efforts for species survival and wildlife recovery, and has excellent environmental education programs.

The Chicago Audubon Society plays a very important role in environmental protection. Many Northwestern students have been involved in the North Branch prairie restoration efforts led by Audubon Chicago Region.

The Evanston Ecology Center, along the canal, concentrates many environmental efforts within Evanston. This center has excellent environmental education programs.

The Field Museum is a major research institution, in addition to being a repository for natural history and culture. It is involved in research and restoration efforts around the globe, from New Guinea to lowland Peru.

The Lake Michigan Federation and the Open Lands Project are advocacy organizations, which are directly or indirectly responsible for successes in preserving important parts of the Chicago wilderness. These citizen organizations are pioneering environmental groups.

The Lincoln Park Zoo is one of the largest zoo-based conservation and science programs in the country. They conduct innovative research on wildlife management and conservation. The Lincoln Park Zoo also serves to educate the public about the importance of protecting our earth’s biodiversity.