Center for Great Plains Studies

About the Center

The Center for Great Plains Studies is a regional research and outreach program established in 1976 at the University of Nebraska. The mission of the Center is to foster the study of and appreciation for the people, cultures, and natural environment of the Great Plains. A sparsely-populated region with highly variable weather set against grassy, rolling land, the Great Plains stretches westward from the Missouri River to the Rocky Mountains, and northward from the Texas Panhandle into the Canadian Prairie Provinces. The region invites inquiry into the relationships between its natural environment and the cultures brought by its various inhabitants, as scholars and residents work both to preserve healthy eco-systems and build thriving human communities. The Center operates the Great Plains Art Museum, the Plains Humanities Alliance, undergraduate and graduate programs, various scholarly projects, and outreach programs; it publishes Great Plains Quarterly and Great Plains Research; it presents public lectures and interdisciplinary symposia. Much of its work is accomplished by its Fellows and Associate Fellows.

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Center news

Great Plains Literature released

Great Plains Literature, by Linda Pratt, is the newest book in the the Discover the Great Plains series. It's now available at the University of Nebraska Press and at the Great Plains Art Museum

Welcome to a new batch of Great Plains Fellows and Affiliate Fellows

Seven new Fellows and two Affiliate Fellows have been added to the nearly 250 Great Plains scholars who call themselves Center for Great Plains Studies Fellows.

Platte Basin Timelapse project relocates to Center

Platte Basin Timelapse project has found a new home at the Center for Great Plains Studies through a collaboration between the center and the Institute of Agriculture and Natural Resources at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. Under the direction of Michael Farrell and Michael Forsberg, the team is now located on the fifth floor of the center at 1155 Q St. It was formerly housed in the Nebraska Educational Telecommunications Center on East Campus.

Great Plains Bison released

Great Plains Bison by Dan O'Brien, wildlife biologist, bison rancher, author of Wild Idea: Buffalo and Family in a Difficult Land (2014), is the newest book in the Discover the Great Plains series. See a bison infographic

Great Plains Graduate Fellow alumna essay

Aubrey Streit Krug (PhD, English and Great Plains Studies, Great Plains Graduate Fellow alumna) recently had an essay published via the Center for Humans and Nature, which issued a call for responses to a recent question series: "What kind of ancestor do you want to be?" In her essay, she writes about being grounded through native Bluestem roots and the lessons she learned while studying the Omaha language at the University of Nebraska—namely how keeping the past in front of us can help make a better future. Streit Krug is a postdoctoral fellow at the Land Institute in Kansas.

Great Plains Graduate Fellows team up for paper

A cross-disciplinary partnership between English PhD Aubrey Streit Krug and Natural Resources PhD Daniel Uden resulted in this new paper, published in Ecology and Society.

Citation: Streit Krug, A., Uden, D., Allen, C., & Twidwell, D. (2017). Culturally induced range infilling of Eastern Redcedar: A problem in ecology, an ecological problem, or both?. Ecology and Society, 22(2).

Sandhill crane economic impact study released

In partnership with the Center, a team at the University of Nebraska Kearney has released a report on the economic impact of Sandhill crane tourism in Nebraska. Key finding: The economic impact of tourism in central Nebraska during the 2017 sandhill crane migration was $14.3 million. The full report is available for download.

Nebraska Ecotourism Liability report produced

A new report, "Rural Landowner Liability for Recreational Activities in Nebraska" is now available for download. Produced by the Center's Great Plains Ecotourism Coalition and written by UNL Law Professor Anthony Schutz, this guide is intended to give advice to new and operating ecotourism providers in Nebraska.

Rubendall Artist in Residence: June 20-23

Elizabeth Rubendall Artist in Residence Lari R. Gibbons will be in the lobby working on art June 20-23. Feel free to watch, ask questions, and view her solo exhibition. Her public schedule is on our Artist in Residence webpage.

2017 Stubbendieck Book Prize winner announced

The winner is - American Serengeti: The Last Big Animals of the Great Plains by Dan Flores

Human Trafficking in the Great Plains: 

Slides from the March 14 Human Trafficking in the Great Plains talk with tons of good information about human trafficking, tips for identifying it, and local agencies that are working on the problem by Dr. Rebecca Buller.

New issue of Great Plains Quarterly: 

Great Plains Quarterly 36.4 is now online at Project MUSE. (See table of contents)

Speaker: Robin Kimmerer

On Oct. 25 the Center hosted the University of Nebraska State Museum's annual Claire M. Hubbard First Peoples of the Plains Lecture: "The Honorable Harvest: Indigenous Knowledge for Biodiversity Conservation," with Robin Kimmerer, SUNY Distinguished Teaching Professor at the College of Environmental Science and Forestry, Founding Director of the Center for Native Peoples and the Environment.

Paul A. Olson speaker: Michel Hogue

The 2016 Stubbendieck Great Plains Distinguished Book Prize lecture was held Thursday, Sept. 29. Download the audio here.

Center kicks off new Great Plains book series

The Center for Great Plains Studies in collaboration with the University of Nebraska Press is celebrating the release of the first book in the Discover the Great Plains small book series. David Wishart, professor of geography at the University of Nebraska, is the author of Great Plains Indians, a compelling introduction to Indian life on the Great Plains from 13,000 years ago to the present. Get a copy at the Great Plains Art Museum or at the University of Nebraska Press.

More news and notes

Current Issue, Vol 38, No. 1

Current Issue of Great Plains ResearchCurrent Issue, Vol. 27, No. 2