Building Social Capital for Climate Resilient Communities


Date: June 6, 2024


Phone: (617) 505-1818

Email: [email protected]


Foley Hoag LLP

155 Seaport Blvd
Boston, MA 02110

The Climate Adaptation Forum is a collaboration between the Environmental Business Council and the Sustainable Solutions Lab at the University of Massachusetts Boston.

As the climate crisis unfolds, we are also facing an epidemic of loneliness. While most climate resilience public investment has been in physical infrastructure, research and experience tell us that it is people and relationships that matter when a crisis hits. Strong webs of trusting relationships, community control of local infrastructure, and spaces for communities to practice governance roles are essential ingredients for successful climate outcomes. That is why, increasingly, climate adaptation funding sources historically reserved for physical projects are opening up for investments in social resilience. But how do we know where these investments are most needed and what kinds of interventions can have the most impact?

This Forum will explore the connection between social capital and disaster response and recovery outcomes, how communities are putting social resilience at the forefront of their climate adaptation efforts, and specific strategies for building social resilience in priority communities.

Forum Speakers

Dr. Daniel Aldrich
Professor, Political Science and Public Policy
Director of the Resilience Studies Program
Co-Director of the Global Resilience Institute
Northeastern University

Dr. Julianne Holt-Lunstad
Professor of Psychology and Neuroscience
Brigham Young University

Lydia Lowe
Executive Director
Chinatown Community Land Trust

Troy Philips 
Enrolled member and Sub-Chief of the Hassanamisco Nipmuc Tribe
Chairperson and Commissioner of the Massachusetts Commission on Indian Affairs

Montanna Cassel – presenting virtually 
Sustainability Planner & Grant Coordinator
Town of Cohasset

Peyton Siler Jones 
Founder and Principal
Siler Climate Consulting

Forum Co-Chairs

Nasser Brahim
Senior Climate Resiliency Specialist
Woods Hole Group

Alex Papali
Director of Regional Economies
Center for Economic Democracy

Adaptation to climate change has emerged as an essential and permanent topic for professional, academic, government and public discussion.

Civil engineers, architects, building owners, real estate investors, insurers, planners, environmental regulators, transportation providers, emergency responders, public health providers, and many others are grappling with how to incorporate the evident need for adaptation and resilience into much of what they do. Academia is also deepening its involvement with this most important and fascinating set of public policy issues.

The growing body of experience and expertise in adaptation is not widely appreciated either within or across the traditional silos that define professions, disciplines and practices. At the same time, there is no regular, ongoing opportunity for adaptation professionals from various fields to meet in Boston to cross-pollinate ideas and share solutions to common problems.

The Environmental Business Council of New England (EBC) and the Sustainable Solutions Lab at the University of Massachusetts Boston have collaborated to establish a quarterly series of half-day Climate Adaptation Forums that will provide cutting-edge thought leadership on adaptation to climate change for environmental and energy professionals, policy makers, municipal officials, NGOs, and practitioners.

These quarterly forums will address everything from infrastructure and design solutions to communication challenges and barriers to implementation to policy solutions to the nexus of climate and equity. Local, national and global speakers will represent forward-thinking institutions, global firms, academia, government and other high level practitioners. Join the ever-growing group of professionals working to address the challenge of climate change adaptation and resiliency at the quarterly forums.

More about the Forum here:

Foley Hoag LLP

155 Seaport Boulevard
Boston, 02210 United States

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