Living Lab

The Living Lab Initiative would be a physical site in Louisiana coastal wetlands to combine scientific research with active restoration. By facilitating collaborations between researchers and restoration project managers, the Living Lab would improve the science behind wetlands restoration and enables land managers to design optimized strategies to be address the environmental challenges facing our coast.

While coastal project managers may monitor their projects for specified outcomes, most don’t have a mandate to perform controlled experiments that could point to improvements in techniques for future projects. On the other hand, researchers who do controlled experiments of this type, don’t typically have an opportunity to have large-scale landscapes to work in.

The Living Lab’s cross-disciplinary approach would bring ecologists, geomorphologists, and plant biologists together with land managers to investigate diverse components of wetlands restoration at a scale that could mimic the size of coastal restoration project. The Living Lab would provide a common ground for researchers, land managers, and coastal restoration project managers to develop scientific and applicable coastal restoration improvements.

The Living Lab would enable not only improvements to coastal restoration projects and programs, but would also provide additional environmental and economic benefits.