What We Do
In August 2012, the National Research Council (NRC) released a report Disaster Resilience: A National Imperative that provided recommendations to build resilience to disasters. These recommendations provided the foundation for the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine's Program on Risk, Resilience, and Extreme Events (a.k.a., the ResilientAmerica Program) which was initiated in 2014. The ResilientAmerica Roundtable was launched in 2014 to implement the four recommendations that were especially relevant to building resilience at the local level in communities:
- Understand, communicate, and managing risk.
- Share data and information about tools, best practices, hazards, and policies that build resilience.
- Measure resilience.
- Build and strengthen coalitions and partnerships with diverse community stakeholders across the public, private, nonprofit, and academic sectors.
The Roundtable is comprised of 20-30 experts (list of current Roundtable members) with diverse subject matter expertise from the research community, government, the private sector, foundations, and non-governmental organizations. The Roundtable convenes experts from the academic, public, private, and nonprofit sectors to design or catalyze activities that build resilience to extreme events. Roundtable members provide expertise, technical assistance, and resources that support the ResilientAmerica’s Community Pilot Program and other OSP programs and initiatives. Roundtable activities are designed to help decision makers build approaches for deciding how and where to invest resources to reduce their risk and build resilience and explain or defend those investment decisions. The specific makeup of the Roundtable evolves to reflect ResilientAmerica’s dynamic activities. Membership is 2-3 years and the Roundtable generally meets twice a year.
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The Roundtable discussed the response and recovery efforts of the 2017 hurricane season and new projects in the works. The Roundtable also attended the event, The Role of Advanced Technologies in Structural Engineering for More Resilient Communities, that it co-hosted with the Board on Infrastructure and the Constructed Environment in collaboration with the SEI/ASCE Advances in Information Technology Committee.
The Roundtable welcomed two new co-chairs, Ms. Linda Langston and Dr. Monica Schoch-Spana. The Roundtable looked back at its activities over the past three years and began planning a new phase of work. Amy Chester, Rebuild by Design, gave a presentation about her organization's work and the Roundtable hosted two panels of experts; one panel discussed measures of resilience and the second talked about urban flooding.
The Roundtable met with the Linn County ground team in its Cedar Rapids/Linn County pilot community and learned about local resilience building efforts. Dan McNamara, U.S. Geological Survey, gave a presentation about induced seismicity. The Roundtable started discussions about its goals for 2017.
The Roundtable met with local partners from the Charleston Resilience Network, the South Carolina Aquarium, and the College of Charleston in its Charleston pilot community to discuss the October 2015 flood and the new Charleston Sea Level Rise Strategy. The Roundtable also discussed new projects and activities planned for 2016.
The Roundtable met with local Seattle stakeholders in its new pilot community to discuss goals and objectives of the new partnership. The Roundtable also selected its fourth pilot community - Tulsa, OK - and started discussions about its goals for 2016. Finally, Roundtable members had the opportunity to attend the Pacific Northwest Resilience Challenge Summit 2015.
The Roundtable heard from two experts. Ms. Kathleen Boyer, FEMA, gave a presentation, "Indicators of Community Resilience to Hazards and the Impacts of Climate Change - A Federal Data Approach," and Ms. Samantha Medlock, White House Office of Management and Budget, gave a brief on the White House Roundtable on Insurance and Resilience. The Roundtable also hosted the workshop, The Role of Disaster Insurance in Improving Resilience.
The Roundtable developed program goals and objectives for 2015 and selected its third pilot community, Seattle, WA. Dr. Lucy Jones and Dr. Adam Rose gave presentations
The Roundtable met with representatives from Linn County, IA and Charleston, SC., and developed a preliminary outline of potential activities and steps for working with the pilot communities. The Roundtable also hosted the workshop, Measures of Community Resilience: From Lessons Learned to Lessons Applied which resulted in the report Developing a Framework for Measuring Community Resilience.
| July 2014|
The Roundtable selected two pilot community sites - Linn County, IA and Charleston, SC - and developed a timeline for working in each pilot community. In addition, the Roundtable co-hosted the expert meeting, Improving Power System Resilience in the 21st Century, with the Board on Energy and Environmental Systems in collaboration with the Electric Power Research Institute and National Association of Regulatory Utility Commissioners.
Bay Area, CA
The Roundtable met with decision makers and stakeholders in the Bay Area to learn about local resilience efforts, and met with representatives from the National Association of Counties and Rockefeller’s 100 Resilient Cities. The Roundtable also developed criteria for selecting the pilot communities.
The Roundtable co-chairs, Dr. M. Granger Morgan and Mr. Eduardo Martinez, kicked off the inaugural meeting of the Roundtable. The meeting focused on developing the goals, objectives, and activities of the Roundtable including scoping out the new community pilot program.