Community and Natural Resources Institute

Logan Canyon

Community Connection

The Community and Natural Resources Institute (CANRI) is committed to interdisciplinary research and engagement related to human and community dimensions of natural resource issues and environmental problems. CANRI is a ‘gathering place’ for faculty and students and focuses efforts on fostering relationships between sociology, anthropology, and other natural resource social sciences at USU and beyond. CANRI emphasizes a diverse ‘tool kit’ of methods for research and engagement that help to better understand and address some of the critical issues in human-environment interactions.

A Rich History

The institute was founded in 1968 and was formerly called the Institute for Social Science Research in Natural Resources (ISSRNR). Dr. Wade Andrus was the first director, followed by Dr. Rick Krannich. Their work leaves a terrific interdisciplinary legacy for CANRI.  Initial research focused on water resources and expanded to energy resource development in the 1970s. Over the years, research interests have included earthquake risks and preparedness in Utah, local response to hazardous waste storage and disposal, public land resource management, wildlife resource management, and the socio-demographic changes occurring in rural areas characterized by “natural amenity”-based development. In recent years, research has focused on amenity migration and water resource issues in the Intermountain West and agricultural producer usage of soil and water conservation practices in various regions throughout the country. Funding has come from various federal and state agency grant sources (e.g., USDA, NSF, Utah Division of Wildlife Resources, Utah Department of Natural Resources, Utah Divisions of Water Resources & Water Quality, Public Land Policy Office) and non-profit foundations. 


College of Humanities and Social Sciences Community and Natural Resource Institute. Utah State University. CANRI Spring 2022 Guest Speakers. Thurday, February 24, 2022, 4:30 pm in EngLab. Dr. Anjali Mulchandani on Atmospheric Water Harvesting for the Navajo Reservation. Thursday, March 17, 2022: 1:00 pm in Old Main 224 and on Zoom. Dr. Judson Finley on his research related to the geological interface with Native history of the west. Thursday April 14, 2022: 12:00 pm. Location TBD. Dr. Ranalda Tsoisie on Water Quality Research and Indigenous Knowledge. Thursday, April 15, 2022: 12:00 pm in Old Main 338 and on Zoom. Dr. Jennifer Sherman on her book, Dividing Paradise. Thursday, April 21, 2022: 12:00 pm in Old Main and on Zoom. Dr. Dan Williams on improving climate resilience in resource dependent communities. Contact: or

Guest Speaker Zoom Links

Judson Finley Jennifer Sherman Dan Williams


Check back soon for CANRI news!