Antioch University New England Answers President Barack Obama’s Call for More Resilient Communities
AUNE Among Private Sector Organizations Recognized by White House Office of Science and Technology Policy
Keene, New Hampshire – Antioch University New England (AUNE) is one of three universities in the United States named in a White House Office of Science and Technology Policy notice released today that outlined responses to President Barack Obama’s call to make our nation’s communities and businesses more resilient to climate change. AUNE’s Center for Climate Preparedness and Community Resilience will convene end-user decision makers and others in the greater Keene community to “road test” version 1.0 of the Obama Administration’s Climate Resilience Toolkit, which was released in November 2014.
The toolkit, which is designed for decision makers and planners and provides resources to help communities use publicly-available climate data and other resources, will be used in tandem with AUNE’s ongoing community resilience efforts. Results of the road test will be compiled, summarized, and shared with federal agencies to inform them of ongoing efforts to improve the Climate Resilience Toolkit in the future.
“Antioch’s initiative, in support of the White House Climate Data Initiative, is part of AUNE’s commitment to strengthen the capacity of municipal and regional planners and decision makers as they build more resilient communities,” said Abigail Abrash Walton, director of AUNE’s Center for Academic Innovation, director of the advocacy concentration for AUNE’s environmental studies master’s degree program, and the co-director of the Antioch University Center for Climate Preparedness and Community Resilience.
The announcement coincides with the release of troves of government data on water and ecosystems, as well as geospatial tools, as part of the President’s Climate Data Initiative.
“The newly released datasets—which include critical information about streamflow, soil, landcover, and biodiversity and are complemented by tools to overlay and visualize them—will be extremely valuable to natural-resource managers faced with day-to-day and long-term strategic decisions about how to operate in the context of climate change,” noted John P. Holdren, assistant to the President for Science and Technology, and director of the White House Office of Science & Technology Policy in a statement posted today on the White House’s blog.
AUNE joins more than a dozen private and public organizations – including NASA and Google – who have committed to work together to combat climate change and support ecosystem and water-resource resilience through data-driven innovation. Antioch University also spearheads and participates in myriad community-focused resilience efforts, including its Weathering Change: Local Solutions for Strong Communities webinar series and conference, presented in partnership with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). The university offers the first-in-the-U.S. Master’s Program for climate adaptation professionals, a PhD in environmental studies and Master’s Programs in resource management and conservation and concentrations in advocacy, conservation biology, environmental education, science teacher certification, as well as Professional Science Master’s Certificates.
About Antioch University New England’s Center for Climate Preparedness and Community Resilience
The mission of AUNE’s Center for Climate Preparedness and Community Resilience is to prepare, respond and recover in the face of climate impacts and other disruptions through collaborative, innovative solutions. The center delivers applied research, consulting, and education and training. Through a solutions-oriented, pragmatic, participatory, and inclusive approach based on change leadership best practices and systems thinking, its focus is on stakeholder capacity building at the local scale (watershed, municipal, county, and region) of preparedness and resilience nationally and internationally, with an explicit awareness of social and climate justice.
About Antioch University
Antioch University is an accredited, non-profit university and a bold and enduring source of innovation in higher education that serves adult students around the world, online and from its five campuses in four states in addition to its University-wide international and doctoral programs. The University lives by its mission every day by helping students realize their potential and achieve their educational goals through an innovative, rigorous and responsive learning environment Antioch University has been accredited by the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools since 1927. Antioch University New England is home to the first-in-the-country Environmental Studies and Educating for Sustainability graduate programs and Conservation Psychology Institute, and offers a top-ranked MBA in Sustainability as well as Clinical and Applied Psychology.