CSI-funded investigators in the Boston area meet with Dr. Rick Spinrad to discuss climate adaptation and engagement with frontline communities

CSI-funded investigators in the Boston area meet with Dr. Rick Spinrad to discuss climate adaptation and engagement with frontline communities

Climate and Societal Interactions (CSI)-funded Boston-area investigators from both the Adaptation Sciences (AdSci) and Climate Adaptation Partnerships (CAP/RISA) programs had the unique opportunity to meet with Dr. Rick Spinrad and his team in Boston, Massachusetts, to present and discuss their projects engaging frontline communities around planning for climate change. The meeting, led and organized by CPO/CSI staff and our partners in the Boston area, took place on March 13th, 2023 at the University of Massachusetts, Boston.

The investigators offered insights into the process of assessing the impacts of climate-related risks across highly exposed populations. Their projects explore wide-ranging benefits of adaptive strategies for underserved communities; for example addressing compound risks, prioritizing nature-based approaches, working through local organizations, and prioritizing educational opportunities. This research prioritizes opportunities to couple climate adaptation and future social and economic community objectives. The following three projects were highlighted because of their focus on climate adaptation and community involvement in the Boston and surrounding area.

  • Adaptation Science (AdSci) Program - Engaging Transient Populations in Climate Preparedness and Coastal Resiliency Initiatives in Cape Cod, Massachusetts. (Ellen Douglas, UMass Boston; Johnna Flahive, PhD. Student, UMass Boston)

  • Climate Adaptation Partnerships (CAP/RISA) Program - CAP/RISA community resilience partnership to mitigate extreme heat through community-led, nature-based solutions in low income Chelsea & East-Boston (Dr. Patricia Fabian, Boston University; Roseann Bongiovanni, GreenRoots Chelsea)

  • Adaptation Science (AdSci) Program - Increasing Massachusetts Coastal Adaptive Capacity and Community Resilience to Sea Level Rise (Annalee Tweitmann, Massachusetts Audubon; Danielle Perry NOAA National Marine Fisheries Service)

It was a chance for all to learn from our external investigators and their partners on the ground about the pressing issues facing communities at risk.

For more information contact Amanda Speciale.

Image Credit: Bhaskar Subramanian

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Dr. Chelsea Combest-Friedman
Social Scientist, Program Director (Acting)
P: (301) 734-1240

Caitlin Simpson
Program Manager
P: (301) 734-1251

Dr. Ariela Zycherman
Social Scientist, Program Manager
P: (301) 734-1244

Sean Bath
Physical Scientist, Program Manager
P: (301) 734-1294

Genie Bey*
Program Specialist (UCAR)
P: (435) 610-0161

Jessica Garrison*
Program Specialist (UCAR)
P: (270) 308-5843


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Americans’ health, security and economic wellbeing are tied to climate and weather. Every day, we see communities grappling with environmental challenges due to unusual or extreme events related to climate and weather.