Since August 2016 I have been a Postdoctoral Fellow with the Urban Resilience to Extremes Sustainability Research Network (URExSRN). Our network is broadly focused on improving the resilience of cities to the extreme weather events (e.g. floods, heat waves) anticipated to be more common with climate change. Our network includes cities across North and South America. Our team of researchers is an interdisciplinary group of ecologists, engineers, social scientists, and others. We also are working closely with practitioners in our network cities to devise practical and feasible solutions for enhancing resilience to these extreme events.
My primary role in the SRN focuses on comparing our cities' current resilience capacity related to these extreme events. I am currently working on inventorying green infrastructure across the cities. This includes both engineered green infrastructure for stormwater such as bioretention basins, as well as green spaces such as parks and urban forests. I intend to use this inventory to model ecosystem services- such as stormwater retention- provided by these features, as well as to understand how green infrastructure implementation varies across the network cities. I am also performing similar geospatial analysis of vacant property in our network cities, using land cover and soil assessment of vacant lots to understand how these spaces may contribute to stormwater retention or heat mitigation. My SRN colleagues will use this information to work with city practitioners and envision new strategies for enhancing urban resilience to extreme events.