Growing Opportunities through Public-Private Partnerships 2016

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Growing Cover

Strategic Discussions for Nebraska is a program in the University of Nebraska–Lincoln Institute of Agriculture and Natural Resources (IANR). Its mission is to teach students to communicate university research so it can be easily understood, then disseminate that information in a professional format. An SDN publication has been produced annually since 2008, each focusing on a different topic.

This year’s publication has been produced by a team of students at UNL who are majoring in Agricultural and Environmental Sciences Communication in the Department of Agricultural Leadership, Education and Communication. The students enrolled in the capstone course in the spring semester of 2016. The course brings together their prior coursework and skills and provides a learning experience similar to those they may encounter in the workplace. The course also emphasizes the factual, complete and accurate communication of complex, science-based issues to public audiences with clarity and objectivity.

During the course, the students learn about scientific research being conducted at UNL and the diverse funding sources required to support it. They interviewed scientists, entrepreneurs, mentors, business partners and university leaders. They wrote stories based on those interviews; the stories were reviewed by the sources and approved for publication. Media specialists from IANR Media provided videography and video editing expertise, which may be accessed online at University Communications provided photography and website services. Jon Humiston, an independent contractor, provided creative and graphic design expertise. IANR provided funding, business and liaison services for the production of this publication.

As coordinator of Strategic Discussions for Nebraska, I express sincere appreciation for the original vision and financial support of the Robert and Ardis James Family Foundation, which founded Strategic Discussions for Nebraska in 2007.

Strategic Discussions for Nebraska now receives the majority of its funding from, and is housed in the UNL Institute of Agriculture and Natural Resources’ College of Agricultural Sciences and Natural Resources and the Department of Agricultural Leadership, Education and Communication. Please visit our website,, where you will find the complete publication and a video montage of scientists explaining their research.

Thank you for your interest in our publication!