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ASU Electronic Theses and Dissertations


This collection includes most of the ASU Theses and Dissertations from 2011 to present. ASU Theses and Dissertations are available in downloadable PDF format; however, a small percentage of items are under embargo. Information about the dissertations/theses includes degree information, committee members, an abstract, supporting data or media.

In addition to the electronic theses found in the ASU Digital Repository, ASU Theses and Dissertations can be found in the ASU Library Catalog.

Dissertations and Theses granted by Arizona State University are archived and made available through a joint effort of the ASU Graduate College and the ASU Libraries. For more information or questions about this collection contact or visit the Digital Repository ETD Library Guide or contact the ASU Graduate College at gradformat@asu.edu.


Subject
Date Range
2010 2019


Los Angeles, California and Phoenix, Arizona are two naturally water-scarce regions that rely on imported water to meet their local water needs. Both areas have been experiencing an ongoing drought that has negatively affected their local water supply. Populations in both cities continue to grow, increasing overall demand for water as the supply decreases. Water conservation is important for the sustainability of each town. However, the methods utilized to conserve residential water in the two areas differ drastically; Los Angeles has implemented involuntary water rationing and Phoenix has not. The widespread effectiveness of involuntary restrictions makes them a popular management …

Contributors
Turrentine, Heather Catherine, Klinsky, Sonja, Dooley, Kevin, et al.
Created Date
2016

Energy poverty is pervasive in sub-Saharan Africa. Nigeria, located in sub-Saharan West Africa, is the world's seventh largest oil exporting country and is a resource-rich nation. It however experiences the same levels of energy poverty as most of its neighboring countries. Attributing this paradox only to corruption or the "Dutch Disease", where one sector booms at the expense of other sectors of the economy, is simplistic and enervates attempts at reform. In addition, data on energy consumption is aggregated at the national level via estimates, disaggregated data is virtually non-existent. Finally, the wave of decentralization of vertically integrated national utilities …

Contributors
Chidebell-Emordi, Chukwunonso, York, Abigail, Pasqualetti, Martin, et al.
Created Date
2015

Engagement as a concept and emerging theory has been explored, but key elements have not been clearly described, and as such, work has not been comprehensive in nature. Research was needed to explore the concept and theory of engagement in general, as well its application to the study of volunteer tourism. Additional research was also needed to incorporate youth perspectives of a volunteer tourism program, along with exploration of engagement impacts on program youth. The purpose of this case study was to explore participant engagement in a volunteer tourism youth education program and impacts on program youth as perceived by …

Contributors
Olsen, Lana Margaret, Andereck, Kathleen, Buzinde, Christine, et al.
Created Date
2018

Economic development over the last century has driven a tripling of the world's population, a twenty-fold increase in fossil fuel consumption, and a tripling of traditional biomass consumption. The associated broad income and wealth inequities are retaining over 2 billion people in poverty. Adding to this, fossil fuel combustion is impacting the environment across spatial and temporal scales and the cost of energy is outpacing all other variable costs for most industries. With 60% of world energy delivered in 2008 consumed by the commercial and industrial sector, the fragmented and disparate energy-related decision making within organizations are largely responsible for …

Contributors
Buch, Rajesh, Wiek, Arnim, Basile, George, et al.
Created Date
2011

Over the last two decades programs and mandates to encourage and foster sustainable urban development have arisen throughout the world, as cities have emerged as key opportunity sites for sustainable development due to the compactness and localization of services and resources. In order to recognize this potential, scholars and practitioners have turned to the practice of visioning as a way to motivate actions and decision making toward a sustainable future. A "vision" is defined as desirable state in the future and scholars believe that the creation of a shared, motivational vision is the best starting point to catalyze positive and …

Contributors
Minowitz, Amy, Wiek, Arnim, Golub, Aaron, et al.
Created Date
2013

Schools all around the country are improving the performance of their buildings by adopting high performance design principles. Higher levels of energy efficiency can pave the way for K-12 Schools to achieve net zero energy (NZE) conditions, a state where the energy generated by on-site renewable sources are sufficient to meet the cumulative annual energy demands of the facility. A key capability for the proliferation of Net Zero Energy Buildings (NZEB) is the need for a design methodology that identifies the optimum mix of energy efficient design features to be incorporated into the building. The design methodology should take into …

Contributors
Islam, Mohammad Moshfiqul, Reddy, T. Agami, Bryan, Harvey J., et al.
Created Date
2016

Contemporary urban food security in the US is influenced by complex, multidimensional, and multi-scale factors. However, most assessment methods and intervention efforts in food security research are: 1) narrowly focused on environmental factors (i.e. the presence or absence of quality food outlets), 2) divorced from the human dimension and, 3) ultimately disempower communities to affect change at the local level. New approaches are needed to capture the lived experiences and unique perspectives of people potentially most vulnerable to food insecurity, while also empowering people to become change agents in their lives and in the wider community. This thesis argues that …

Contributors
Talbot, Kathleen Lynn, Eakin, Hallie, Wiek, Arnim, et al.
Created Date
2012

With increasing interest in sustainability and green building, organizations are implementing programs such as Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design for Existing Buildings: Operations and Maintenance (LEED-EB) in order to focus corporate sustainability goals on the operations of a facility and the practices of the building occupants. Green building programs help reduce the impact of a facility and bring about several environmental benefits including but not limited to energy conservation, water conservation and material conservation. In addition to various environmental benefits, green building programs can help companies become more efficient. The problem is that organizations are not always successful in …

Contributors
Furphy, Kimberly, Hild, Nicholas, Olson, Larry, et al.
Created Date
2010

The conflict conditions that afflict the livelihoods of Palestinian residents living in the West Bank are embedded within the population's ability to travel more so than any other routine activity. For Palestinian residents, domestic and international travel is a process of following paths riddled with multiple barriers that are both physical and political. Past studies have done well to paint a clear picture of the harsh transportation landscape in the region. However, less attention has focused on how barriers interact to indirectly and directly affect levels of accessibility and well-being. Additionally, suggested development solutions are rarely capable of being successfully …

Contributors
Ahmad, Omaya Heidi, Golub, Aaron, Aggarwal, Rimjhim, et al.
Created Date
2015

ABSTRACT The tourism industry continues to mature as many consumers are demanding more responsible and sustainable development. Mindfulness has been studied in tourism as a cognitive trait recognized by actively processing information through an acute sensitivity to an individual's environment and openness to new information. Mindfulness has been shown to predict behaviors related to tourism and recreation. The Theory of Planned Behavior (TPB) has been extensively applied to understand human behavior. Despite TPB's extensive history in the social sciences, researchers continue to incorporate new social factors to explain behavior. This study employs an emerging psychological construct, mindfulness, into the TPB …

Contributors
Azzi, Maya Violette, Vogt, Christine A, Buzinde, Christine, et al.
Created Date
2017

Over the past few decades, businesses globally have advanced in incorporating the principles of sustainability as they strive to align economic outcomes with growing and complex social and environmental demands and opportunities. This transition is conditioned by the maturity, scale, and geographical location of a business (among other factors), with particular challenges placed on small enterprises in middle- to low-income communities. Within this context, the overarching research question of this dissertation is why and how business incubation processes may foster sustainable enterprises at the middle and base of the socioeconomic pyramid (MoP/BoP). To explore this question, in this project I …

Contributors
Wood, Mark Williams, Redman, Charles L, Wiek, Arnim, et al.
Created Date
2014

'Attributional' Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) quantitatively tracks the potential environmental impacts of international value chains, in retrospective, while ensuring that burden shifting is avoided. Despite the growing popularity of LCA as a decision-support tool, there are numerous concerns relating to uncertainty and variability in LCA that affects its reliability and credibility. It is pertinent that some part of future research in LCA be guided towards increasing reliability and credibility for decision-making, while utilizing the LCA framework established by ISO 14040. In this dissertation, I have synthesized the present state of knowledge and application of uncertainty and variability in ‘attributional’ LCA, …

Contributors
Subramanian, Vairavan, Golden, Jay S, Chester, Mikhail V, et al.
Created Date
2016

The uncertainty of change inherent in issues such as climate change and regional growth has created a significant challenge for public decision makers trying to decide what adaptation actions are needed to respond to these possible changes. This challenge threatens the resiliency and thus the long term sustainability of our social-ecological systems. Using an empirical embedded case study approach to explore the application of advanced scenario analysis methods to regional growth visioning projects in two regions, this dissertation provides empirical evidence that for issues with high uncertainty, advanced scenario planning (ASP) methods are effective tools for helping decision makers to …

Contributors
Quay, Ray, Pijawka, David, Shangraw, Ralph, et al.
Created Date
2011

Passive cooling techniques, specifically passive downdraft cooling (PDC), have proven to be a solution that can address issues associated with air conditioning (AC). Globally, over 100 buildings have integrated PDC in its different forms, most of which use direct evaporative cooling. Even though all surveyed buildings were energy efficient and cost-effective and most surveyed buildings were thermally comfortable, application of PDC remains limited. This study aims to advance performance of the single stage passive downdraft evaporative cooling tower (PDECT), and expand its applicability beyond the hot dry conditions where it is typically used, by designing and testing a multi-stage passive …

Contributors
Al-Hassawi, Omar Dhia Sadulah, Bryan, Harvey, Reddy, T Agami, et al.
Created Date
2017

The lack of substantive, multi-dimensional perspectives on civic space planning and design has undermined the potential role of these valuable social and ecological amenities in advancing urban sustainability goals. Responding to these deficiencies, this dissertation utilized mixed quantitative and qualitative methods and synthesized multiple social and natural science perspectives to inform the development of progressive civic space planning and design, theory, and public policy aimed at improving the social, economic, and environmental health of cities. Using Phoenix, Arizona as a case study, the analysis was tailored to arid cities, yet the products and findings are flexible enough to be geographically …

Contributors
Ibes, Dorothy, Talen, Emily, Boone, Christopher, et al.
Created Date
2013

Public participation is considered an essential process for achieving sustainable urban development. Often, however, insufficient attention is paid to the design of public participation, and processes are formulaic. Then, participation may not match the local context of the communities within which a project is conducted. As a result, participation may become co-optative or coercive, stakeholders may lose trust, and outcomes may favor special interests or be unsustainable, among other shortcomings. In this research, urban public participation is a collaborative decision-making process between residents, businesses, experts, public officials, and other stakeholders. When processes are not attuned with the local context (participant …

Contributors
Cohen, Matthew, Wiek, Arnim, Manuel-Navarrete, David, et al.
Created Date
2015

Haiti has witnessed high deforestation rates in recent decades, caused largely by the fuel needs of a growing population. The resulting soil loss is estimated to have contributed towards a decline in agricultural productivity of 0.5% -1.2% per year since 1997. Recent studies show the potential of biochar use through pyrolysis technology to increase crop yields and improve soil health. However, the appropriateness of this technology in the context of Haiti remains unexplored. The three objectives of this research were to identify agricultural- and fuel-use-related needs and gaps in rural Haitian communities; determine the appropriateness of biochar pyrolyzer technology, used …

Contributors
Delaney, Michael Ryan, Aggarwal, Rimjhim, Chhetri, Nalini, et al.
Created Date
2011

Photovoltaics (PV) is an environmentally promising technology to meet climate goals and transition away from greenhouse-gas (GHG) intensive sources of electricity. The dominant approach to improve the environmental gains from PV is increasing the module efficiency and, thereby, the renewable electricity generated during use. While increasing the use-phase environmental benefits, this approach doesn’t address environmentally intensive PV manufacturing and recycling processes. Lifecycle assessment (LCA), the preferred framework to identify and address environmental hotspots in PV manufacturing and recycling, doesn’t account for time-sensitive climate impact of PV manufacturing GHG emissions and underestimates the climate benefit of manufacturing improvements. Furthermore, LCA is …

Contributors
Triplican Ravikumar, Dwarakanath, Seager, Thomas P, Fraser, Matthew P, et al.
Created Date
2016

Energy is a central concern of sustainability because how we produce and consume energy affects society, economy, and the environment. Sustainability scientists are interested in energy transitions away from fossil fuels because they are nonrenewable, increasingly expensive, have adverse health effects, and may be the main driver of climate change. They see an opportunity for developing countries to avoid the negative consequences fossil-fuel-based energy systems, and also to increase resilience, by leap-frogging-over the centralized energy grid systems that dominate the developed world. Energy transitions pose both challenges and opportunities. Obstacles to transitions include 1) an existing, centralized, complex energy-grid system, …

Contributors
Koster, Auriane M., Anderies, John M, Aggarwal, Rimjhim, et al.
Created Date
2013

Alfalfa is a major feed crop widely cultivated in the United States. It is the fourth largest crop in acreage in the US after corn, soybean, and all types of wheat. As of 2003, about 48% of alfalfa was produced in the western US states where alfalfa ranks first, second, or third in crop acreage. Considering that the western US is historically water-scarce and alfalfa is a water-intensive crop, it creates a concern about exacerbating the current water crisis in the US west. Furthermore, the recent increased export of alfalfa from the western US states to China and the United …

Contributors
Kim, Booyoung, Muneepeerakul, Rachata, Ruddell, Benjamin, et al.
Created Date
2015