Laudato Si Action Platform

The Laudato Si Action Platform is a 7-year initiative launched by the Vatican in 2021, commemorating Pope Francis's 2015 encyclical on integral ecology.  Coordinated by the Dicastery for Promoting Integral Human Development, the platform identifies seven broad goals related to Laudato Si and invites all Catholic sectors (universities, churches, NGOs, etc) to develop concrete plans to advance the goals within a 7-year timeframe.  The goals are: 

  • Response to the cry of the earth
  • Response to the cry of the poor
  • Ecological economics
  • Adoption of sustainable lifestyles
  • Ecological education
  • Ecological spirituality 
  • Community engagement and participatory action 

The Laudato Si Action Platform’s university working group, is outlining a university pathway that will make the goals of the larger initiative relevant to a university context.  Chaired by Michael Schuck (Loyola University, Chicago), the working group is integrated into the justice and ecology efforts of the International Association of Jesuit Universities (IAJU).  At USF, the Laudato Si project is a collaboration between the Joan and Ralph Center for Catholic Social Thought and the Ignatian Tradition and the Office of the Provost.

Laudato Si Action Platform Working Group

The Laudato Si Action Platform Working Group members will work together to foster a community conversation and co-design a university-wide action plan related to the Laudato Si Action Platform. During this one-year commitment, the working group will assist three co-chairs with the following tasks: 

  1. Develop the charge for a faculty, librarian, staff and student working group, solicit nominations and make recommendations regarding faculty, librarian, staff, student and external community members. Convene regular meetings and make summary minutes available to the USF community.
  2. Survey and report on current USF initiatives in the areas of environmental justice and sustainability
  3. Convene town halls and meetings to gather input from students, faculty, librarians and staff as well as external stakeholders. 
  4. Provide consultation and draft a 3-year action plan that outlines USF participation in the 7-year goals of the international Laudato Si Action Platform, that addresses and aligns with USF’s context, mission, and strategic plan.  
  5. Compile an annual report on the Laudato Si project, and host a community forum to ensure transparency regarding progress.

The Lane Center will provide administrative support and will serve as a liaison to the Laudato Si Action Platform’s university working group as well as regional, national, and international Jesuit networks. 


  • Alice Kaswan, Professor and Associate Dean for Faculty Scholarship, School of Law (Co-Chair)
  • Melissa Duphily, Program Coordinator, Teacher Education, School of Education (Co-Chair)
  • Gerard Kuperus, Professor, Philosophy Department and Environmental Studies Program, College of Arts & Sciences (Co-Chair)
  • Erin Brigham, Executive Director of the Joan and Ralph Lane Center for Catholic Social Thought and the Ignatian Tradition and Chief Mission Officer
  • Allison Luengen, Associate Professor, Department of Environmental Science, College of Arts & Sciences
  • Deborah S Benrubi, Technical Services Librarian / Media Librarian and Liaison for Media Studies / Seed Librarian, Gleeson Library | Geschke Center
  • Dana Zartner, Professor & Director, International Studies Department & Honors College
  • Jeffrey Paris, Associate Dean for Arts & Humanities, College of Arts & Sciences
  • Joshua McDermott, Director, USF STAGES productions
  • Kelly L'Engle, Associate Professor, Health Professions, School of Nursing and Health Professions
  • Luis E Bazan, Adjunct Professor and Associate Director for Immersions and Arrupe Programs
  • Sam Robert Mickey, Adjunct Professor, Theology and Religious Studies, College of Arts & Sciences
  • Sheri Brenner, Media Lab Director, College of Arts & Sciences
  • Tracy Benning, Associate Professor, College of Arts & Sciences
  • Jacqueline Ramos, Community Engaged Learning Program Manager, The McCarthy Center
  • William Riggs, Associate Professor, Public Administration, School of Management
  • Richard Hsu, Sustainability Coordinator
  • Anastasia Vrachnos, Associate Vice Provost for International Initiatives
  • Valere Ossie, Graduate Student, College of Arts and Sciences

About the Lane Center

Located in the College of Arts and Sciences and Directed by Erin Brigham, PhD, the Joan and Ralph Lane Center for Catholic Social Thought and the Ignatian Tradition advances the scholarship and application of the Catholic intellectual and Ignatian traditions in the church and society with an emphasis on social concerns. Drawing upon the rich diversity of the university, the San Francisco Bay Area and the international Society of Jesus, we support research, teaching, and action to promote and engage Catholic social thought especially in response to contemporary issues.