The department is home to multiple research centers focused on improving conditions for people, economies, and the environment.

Agriculture and Environment Center

Our mission is to catalyze integrated research and engagement related to the impacts of land use and land management on water and the environment.

Better Kid Care

Better Kid Care provides evidence-informed professional development to early care and education and youth development professionals to improve the quality of their care and educational practices.

Center for Economic and Community Development

Penn State's Center for Economic and Community Development helps create new opportunities for people living throughout Pennsylvania.

Center for Professional Personnel Development

Home of "Teach Ag!" at Penn State, the center is committed to the operation of a comprehensive program of professional personnel development for career and technical education.

Consumer Services Information System

CSIS focuses on regulated public utilities, consumer complaints, education and low income utility consumer issues.

Environmental Demography Network (EDeN)

The Environmental Demography Network (EDeN) is a research group dedicated to understanding the complex interactions between humans and their environments.

Institute for Sustainable Agricultural, Food, and Environmental Science (SAFES)

The Institute for Sustainable Agricultural, Food, and Environmental Science (SAFES) establishes a novel environment for accelerating solutions to persistently "wicked" landscape-level challenges centered on agriculture, food, and the environment.

Northeast Regional Center for Rural Development (NERCRD)

One of four federally-funded regional centers coordinating rural development research in the U.S., the NERCRD coordinates the initiatives of the rural development faculty from the 15 land-grant institutions in the Northeast region.

Pennsylvania Women's Agricultural Network (PA WAgN)

The Pennsylvania Women's Agricultural Network (PA-WAgN) supports women in agriculture by providing positive learning environments, networking, and empowerment opportunities.


The UNESCO Chair in Rural Community, Leadership, and Youth Development focuses on issues of youth and community capacity building, equality and education, economic development, social justice, and sustainable development.