Kat McLaughlin ’25



Project Title

Equitable Energy Transitions: Investigating Community Response

Certificate(s): Environmental Studies

I investigated the community response to solar development in southern Pennsylvania. My goal was to use a qualitative approach to understand the diverse perspectives of local community members living or working close to solar projects. This work will provide insight into how communities will impact and be impacted at the local level by the necessary large-scale transition to net-zero. This perspective is vital for the implementation of an equitable energy transition. For this project, I transcribed and summarized scoping interviews to help drive and focus future research. I also sent out 1,000 mailers to recruit more interview participants, and I began preliminary thematic analysis, a reflexive and inductive method to identify patterns from our interviews. Thanks to my incredible mentors, I learned a lot about qualitative approaches to research, especially within the scope of behavioral science and psychology. I look forward to implementing these new perspectives and skills in future anthropological projects.

Internship Year


Project Category

Innovation and a New Energy Future


Behavioral Science for Policy Lab, Princeton University - Princeton, New Jersey


Elke Weber, Gerhard R. Andlinger Professor in Energy and the Environment, Professor of Psychology and the School of Public and International Affairs, Princeton University; Holly Caggiano, Assistant Professor in Planning, University of British Columbia; Sara Constantino, Visiting Research Scholar, School of Public and International Affairs, Princeton University