Sara Perl Egendorf
Education: PhD ’20, CUNY Graduate Center, New York
Cornell Adviser: Jenny Kao-Kniffin
External Partner: The NYC Mayor’s Office of Environmental Remediation
Theme: Increasing Food Security, Reducing Climate Risks
Start Date: August 2020
Greening the Smart City: Developing an Internet of Things (IoT) Platform for Enhancing Urban Soil Ecosystem Services, Food Justice, and Climate Change Mitigation
Sara Perl Egendorf (“Perl”) (she/her pronouns) was born and raised on unceded Lenape land (known as New York City), where she continues to learn from soils and people who work with them. Her PhD research at the City University of New York (CUNY) developed a multi-scalar systems approach for limiting exposure to lead (Pb) in soil, particularly by constructing new soils with the NYC Clean Soil Bank. As a Postdoctoral Fellow with the Cornell Atkinson Center for Sustainability, she uses a range of biogeochemical and participatory action research methods to study bacterial and fungal communities in newly constructed soils, and the wide-ranging impacts these soils have. In collaboration with many experts outside of academia, she conducts experiments on the ways urban soils can mitigate climate change and promote food justice, with the aim of co-creating knowledge platforms that document and amplify the vital impacts of urban soils and urban growers.