Wednesday, February 8, 2017

An Agenda to Advance Integrative Resilience Research and Practice

February 2017


Focus on
Community Resilience

Dear Colleagues,
We hope everyone is enjoying a healthy and productive start to 2017. While it has been a few months since our last newsletter, the issues related to strengthening the resilience of communities remain ever more resonant and critical in the new year. Not only do we have unprecedented events influencing our communities, our nation, and our world, but we still face a significant mix of stresses that will continue to affect the viability and robustness of where we live and work. We will need to remain vigilant in pulling together new approaches that blend the best of science and practice across disciplines and sectors in order to respond effectively to these challenges. We also have a great opportunity to use resilience science and practice to reimagine how we build our systems and communities.
We look forward to sharing these new tools and recent reports with each of you, and hope that you will email us about your resilience activities to keep this important dialogue going.
Anita Chandra
Director, RAND Justice, Infrastructure, and Environment
Joie Acosta
Senior Behavioral Scientist

Featured Research

Developing an Integrative Agenda for the Future of Resilience Research and Practice

Team strategizing and planning, photo by Ondine32/Getty Images
People are facing an increasing variety and number of stressors. The nature of these stressors ranges from interpersonal and financial difficulties to environmental hazards and societal forces, affecting individuals, institutions, and communities. Extensive research has focused on the healthiest and most effective ways that people and communities respond to and recover from stress. While resilience science has advanced greatly in terms of understanding the factors that promote individual as well as community resilience, there is increasing recognition of the need for transdisciplinary research (among disciplines such as psychology, environmental health, public health, architecture, planning and community development, economics, political science, criminal justice, etc.).
This report summarizes proceedings from a unique meeting of leading researchers, practitioners, and policymakers in the field of resilience, convened by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and the RAND Corporation. The document offers an agenda for the future of resilience research and practice.

Tools and Resources

ENGAGED Toolkit: Improving the Role of Nongovernmental Organizations in Disaster Response and Recovery

The ENGAGED toolkit assists emergency planners and nongovernmental organization (NGOs) stakeholders in determining the capacity and capability of particular NGOs for disaster response and recovery. In addition, the toolkit fills an important gap in knowledge and understanding about the key elements that drive NGO participation.

Building Partnerships for Recovery Across The Sectors

Partnerships for Recovery Across The Sectors (PRACTIS) Toolkit
The RAND Corporation, in partnership with the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene (DOHMH); the University of Colorado – Denver; and the University of California, Los Angeles, conducted a study to show how partnerships help government agencies, and particularly public health entities, support more efficient and effective recovery. The study resulted in a toolkit, called Partnerships for Recovery Across The Sectors (PRACTIS), which leverages the lessons learned from that study and translates them into actionable guidance for local health departments (LHDs).
The toolkit offers LHDs three tools: (1) a sample survey and steps for fielding the survey to help LHDs identify the key CBOs that contribute to disaster response and recovery, (2) a quality improvement guide and sample quality improvement report to help generate guidance about the strengths and weaknesses of the partnerships between LHDs and CBOs and between CBOs, and (3) a tabletop recovery exercise that can be used to improve the relationship between LHDs and CBOs. While the tools are geared towards LHDs and CBOs, there is potential for adaptation to other sector relationships.

Ongoing Research

How Can Communities in the U.S. Gulf Region Effectively Build Resilience to Large Oil Spills?

Aerial images of the Deepwater Horizon oil spill
Michael B. Watins/U.S. Navy
The Consortium for Resilient Gulf Communities (CRGC) aims to assess and address the ways in which the 2010 Deepwater Horizon oil spill affects the health, social, and economic wellbeing of people in the Gulf Coast region. Established in 2015 with funding from the Gulf of Mexico Research Initiative, CRGC is led by the RAND Gulf States Policy Institute, in partnership with Louisiana State University, Tulane University, University of South Alabama, and Louisiana Public Health Institute.
Our transdisciplinary research and outreach activities include a wide range of efforts designed to help communities more effectively understand, withstand, and overcome the multiple stressors brought on by catastrophic oil spills. Information and tools for scientists and practitioners are available on the CRGC website. You can also stay updated with our efforts by liking us on Facebook.

Community-based Action on Gun Violence Using RAND's Resilience Framework

Downtown New Haven skyline
DenisTangneyJr/Getty Images
A recent community-based participatory study to address gun violence in New Haven, Connecticut adapted RAND's community resilience framework to guide the work of multiple sectors and broader community response to gun violence. The study found that the framework was effective for mitigating exposure to gun violence in communities with persistent gun violence and activating community members and local officials to engage in gun violence research. The full study can be found here.
Resilience in Action

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