Year 1 Activities

In September 2016, Lisa Goddard and Radley Horton agreed to serve as co-chairs of the climate adaptation initiative. The following is a summary of the primary activities of the initiative within its first and second years.Formation of a steering committee: In fall 2016, a full steering committee was formed to guide the activities, themes and projects of the Initiative.

Research inventory: In fall 2016, the Earth Institute underwent a review of existing research and courses related to adaptation, to take stock of current and ongoing work at Columbia.

Reading seminar series: The Initiative instituted a reading seminar in spring 2017 to create a common intellectual experience on climate adaptation. Each session was facilitated by a different Earth Institute scholar, involving open discussion on a set of readings.

Earth Institute center director workshop: In April 2017, the Initiative convened a meeting of center directors in order to solicit feedback on activities from the broader Earth Institute community, and develop ideas for future work.

Capstone course for undergraduate students: In spring 2017, a group of students worked on material for the Initiative through a Sustainable Development capstone course. With guidance from the steering committee, students underwent a literature review, developed a final report of their findings, and planned a well-attended public event.

Major themes: Throughout the course of the first year, three major themes repeatedly aroseĀ in conversation: adaptation in urban settings; retreat; and conservation. These themes will be the primary areas of focus moving forward.