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Much has been written about growing economic challenges, increasing income inequality, and political polarization in the United States. This new book by Chris Benner and Manuel Pastor argues that lessons for addressing these national challenges are emerging from a new set of realities in America's metropolitan regions: first, that inequity is, in fact, bad for economic growth; second, that bringing together the concerns of equity and growth requires concerted local action; and, third, that the fundamental building block for doing this is the creation of diverse and dynamic epistemic (or knowledge) communities, which help to overcome political polarization and help regions address the challenges of economic restructuring and social divides. Combining data, case studies, and emerging narratives of multi-sector collaborations in 11 metro regions, the book offers a powerful prescription not just for metros but for our national challenges of slow job growth, rising economic inequality, and sharp political polarization. Download the book for free here.
"Capitalizing Environmental Justice in the Sacramento Region: Building a Strategic Framework for Regional Action" highlights environmental issues that disproportionately affect low-income communities and communities of color, and which also have profound implications for the entire region's well-being and sustainability. It does so by highlighting some of the most socially and environmentally vulnerable areas and populations within the Capital Region through the use of data and mapping tools, and presents some key opportunities for environmental justice action. [Read the full publication here.]
Dr. Stephen Wheeler, CRC Executive Committee member and UC Davis Associate Professor of Landscape Architecture and Environmental Design, will be published in the summer 2015 issue of the Journal of the American Planning Association for his article titled "Built Landscapes of the Metropolitan Areas: An International Typology." Wheeler presents a typology of built landscape forms found within 24 metropolitan regions worldwide, and uses GIS software to map these forms and compare regions. The analysis shows that 27 basic types of built landscapes make up metro regions, of which nine are very common. Traditional urban types now make up a small fraction of most regions, while suburban and exurban forms comprise the vast majority of the land area. There are noted regional differences in the mix of built landscape types. Wheeler links different built landscape types to their sustainability implications, and recommends that planners: help the public and decision-makers understand built landscapes and their implications; include landscape-scale elements such as street patterns and networks of green infrastructure when framing urban development alternatives; ensure that local codes and design guidelines enable desired forms of built landscapes and discourage those that are problematic for sustainability; and incentivize built landscape change that promotes sustainability. Wheeler is currently working on a book titled Built Landscapes that will expand upon this material and his research was recently featured in the Washington Post. email@example.com
How well did Latino and Asian-Americans turn out to vote last November? What can we expect in 2016? The California Civic Engagement Project (CCEP) at the UC Davis Center for Regional Change just released new research examining disparities in voter participation during the 2014 general election. The brief discusses new analysis projecting the strength of the Latino and Asian-American vote in California and identifying the potential impact of these voters in the 2016 elections. [Link to the brief here...]
From Testimony to Transformation: The Identifying Violations Affecting Neighborhoods (IVAN) Program is a new CRC report about an innovative program of environmental monitoring, reporting, and enforcement in California. IVAN is intended to improve health and conditions of well-being in disadvantaged communities where residents face high levels of environmental hazards and low levels of economic, political, and social resources need to address them. The CRC's report explains IVAN's history, successes, and challenges, and to offer suggestions for improving the program. We hope that this report will inform funders, policy-makers, public agency officials, and environmental justice advocates in California and beyond that are either currently involved in IVAN or are considering establishing an IVAN network. [Learn more about IVAN here...]
Last Monday, San Jose Mercury News published a guest commentary piece written by Center for Regional Change faculty affiliates Chris Benner and Alex Karner. They discuss the Bay Area's housing crisis which can only be fixed if policies and practices result in the construction of new affordable units. [Read here...]
IVAN (Identifying Violations Affecting Neighborhoods) is a community-led initiative that incorporates community experiences and government expertise to address environmental hazards in front-line communities. IVAN has been the medium for many community successes and for improved communication between government and residents.
This event is open to the first 150 people to RSVP. RSVP on our Eventbrite page here.
Date: July 13, 2015
Place: CalEPA’s Coastal Hearing Room 1001| Street, Sacramento, CA