The governance of adaptation to sea level rise

Sea level rise interdependencies
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This project investigates the collaborative governance of adaptation to sea level rise in the San Francisco Bay Area. The project seeks to identify, map and understand the governance, ecological and infrastructural interdependencies existing in the Bay Area insofar as climate adaptation to sea level rise is concerned. The project is a joint effort with University of California Berkeley Dept of Engineering and New York University Abu Dhabi Engineering Division. It is financed by a NSF Critical Resilient Interdependent Infrastructure Systems and Processes (CRISP) grant.

The study began in 2015 and proceeded in 2 phases. The first phase consisted of qualitative interviews with key governmental and non-governmental stakeholders in the Bay Area aimed at understanding the main challenges, gaps and goals being discussed about in relation to sea level rise.  The outcome of the first phase is a report released in 2017, authored by Mark Lubell and titled "The Governance Gap" (linked below). This report has been widely circulated across collaborative platforms and venues focused on climate adaptation and sea level rise in the Bay Area.

The second phase began in 2018 and consisted of drafting and disseminanting a web-based governance survey to a comprehensive list of stakeholders involved in the governance of sea level rise.  The survey aimed at collecting data on stakeholders' perceptions and preferences regarding sea level rise, as well as their collaborative relationships. The outcome of this effort is a report authored by Mark Lubell, Francesca Pia Vantaggiato and Darcy Bostic, released in 2019 and titled "The governance of sea level rise in the San Francisco Bay Area: results from a survey of stakeholders". This report has been circulated to all survey respondents. Its main results have been presented at various policy meetings focused on climate adaptation and sea level rise in the Bay Area.

We are now working on academic publications resulting from the analysis of this data.

The scope of this project may be expanded in the future to assess the governance challenges existing in other regions of the USA that are affected by sea level rise in comparative perspective.

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