Speaker: Adam Parris, Ph.D., M.S. New York City Mayor’s Office of Resiliency Deputy Director of Climate Science and Risk
Title: The Climate Research Exchange: Building the climate research NYC deserves
Abstract: As important as science and research are, there’s an increasingly vocal consensus among scientists across the world that justice issues are equally important in decision-making. There is no question that science plays a critical role managing complex and rapidly evolving risks like the COVID-19 pandemic, extreme weather, and climate change. Facing these risks, scientific knowledge is essential for responsibly exercising precaution and, hopefully, learning how to avoid disasters in the future. However, because people and institutions are plagued by structural issues like racism, relying on science alone to guide decisions can easily, even subconsciously, perpetuate the status quo. Bolstered by its longstanding partnership with the New York City Panel on Climate Change1 (NPCC), the City of New York (NYC) is increasingly making equity considerations a hallmark of its response to climate change. Now, the Mayor’s Office of Resiliency (MOR) is taking another step by making fair and diverse public input a part of prioritizing climate research and action. In 2020, MOR is initiating the Climate Research Exchange, a set of structured dialogues designed to develop a high priority research agenda built on diverse input from City staff and stakeholders. We want to engage scientists, government agencies, community-based organizations, and residents. The very first step in the CRE process is an interactive presentation that provides an orientation to and information on New York City’s climate risks. This step involves a 1.5-hour interactive presentation and poll, where we will encourage real-time group discussion. The presentation will provide general definitions related to resiliency and adaptation and baseline information on both climate risks and ongoing climate resiliency and adaptation efforts. While the primary purpose is to help determine what types of scientific support are needed, another benefit is to orient groups to a collective resiliency context, building more cohesive public discourse through the process and providing some calibration in terms of the feedback on research priorities.
Bio: Adam Parris, a nationally-recognized leader with 15 years of experience working with scientists, governments, and communities to advance climate resilience and adaptation. Currently, he is the Deputy Director of Climate Science and Risk Communication at the Mayor’s Office of Resiliency in New York. Previously, he led the Science and Resilience Institute at Jamaica Bay, a partnership aimed at improving resilience in New York City. Adam has supported coastal planning for Federal agencies, as well as the states of California, Maryland, New York, and New Jersey. Mr. Parris also directed NOAA’s Regional Integrated Sciences and Assessments (RISA) program, a network of 10 regional centers that help expand the nation’s capacity to prepare for and adapt to climate. He has coedited two books and co-authored nearly a dozen papers both research and nonfiction. He holds a Bachelor’s degree in English Literature and Environmental Geology from Bucknell University and a Master of Science in Geology from the University of Vermont. He lives in Brooklyn with his wife, two kids and dog, who are
a constant source of inspiration, humility, and good humor.
For more information about this seminar and about joining in online, please contact Doris Switzer at firstname.lastname@example.org