Centers of Excellence

The SoHE Centers of Excellence

The School of Human Ecology (SoHE) hosts five Centers, referred to collectively as our “Centers of Excellence”, which conduct a variety of scholarly, research, and outreach efforts. These Centers are part of a larger UW-Madison campus-wide network of Centers which involve faculty, staff, and students from the natural sciences, the social sciences, and the arts and humanities. Together, the Centers generate, on an annual basis, millions of dollars in extramural research awards. They also play an important role in graduate education and outreach. The SoHE Centers of Excellence specialize in innovative, engaged work that advances the themes and inquiries central to the SoHE Departments, including Civil Society and Community Studies, Design Studies, Human Development and Family Studies, and Consumer Science. We engage a broad variety of affiliates and partners from across campus, in industry, and the community – from local to global – in our efforts.

Center for Child and Family Well-Being
Seeking to respond to critical issues faced by family members and those who serve them, the Center for Child and Family Well-Being is a vehicle through which the University is able to create and share knowledge as well as capitalize on external expertise to promote healthy human development and family life. This multidisciplinary Center works with researchers and policymakers in state and federal government, foundations and community-based nonprofit organizations to help achieve its goals.

IMG_0673Center for Community and Nonprofit Studies
Guided by the theme “Inquiry and Action for Social Change,” the Center for Community and Nonprofit Studies, or CommNS, is a hub for faculty, students, professionals, and community partners to collaborate on research and practice that affects the well-being of communities as well as the civic and nonprofit sectors. The CommNS builds capacity and knowledge in community and nonprofit studies through the integration of action and applies research, education, outreach, and engagement. The CommNS provides an inspiring place for UW faculty and Center affiliates to exchange and collaborate with fellow researchers, students, community members, professionals, and volunteers in civil society and community organizations.

Center for Design and Material Culture
The Center for Design and Material Culture promotes learning, exploration, outreach, and community engagement related to design and material culture through stewardship and administration of the Helen Louise Allen Textile Collection and Ruth Davis Design Gallery. Using designed objects as primary sources for research and exhibitions, we invite faculty, students and the community-at-large to explore art, design, and the built environment within the context of society and the natural environment.

Center for Financial Security
Supporting applied research on household finance and financial capability, the Center for Financial Security (CFS) examines the role that specific programs, policies, and products can play in helping individuals navigate the increasingly complex financial marketplace. CFS faculty and staff have extensive experience in program development, evaluation, and applied research in partnership with organizations ranging from community-based nonprofits to large public agencies.

Kohl’s Center for Retailing
The Kohl’s Center for Retailing strives to nurture a synergistic relationship between the retail industry, their partners, and the world-class faculty, staff, and students at the University of Wisconsin-Madison.  This relationship is to be built on the highest ethical standards and dedicated to improving the lives of consumers, productivity of the industry, and elevating the status of retail by fueling innovation and competition in the market place.

Annual Reports

For information about the Centers, please see: