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Motivation and Vision

Community Resilience refers to the capacity of a community or region to adapt to change and thrive despite the chronic stresses (access to resources, climate change) and acute shocks (flooding, wildfire, pandemic) they may experience (Resilient Cities Network).

Promoting community resilience requires collaboration across many levels of society and professional disciplines. A critical step toward building resilient communities is to take action to reduce risk before a disaster strikes. Efforts to mitigate and prepare for future events minimize the impact of disasters, allowing communities to respond and recover from events more effectively. 

Every dollar spent on mitigation before a disaster corresponds to six dollars saved on response and recovery after a disaster. Thus, resiliency efforts can save the government millions of dollars while simultaneously strengthening infrastructure to reduce the degree of damage, economic loss, and fatalities. Tackling resiliency requires efforts from a wide range of disciplines. 

For example, natural scientists identify the causes and consequences of environmental threats, social scientists assess the factors that contribute to vulnerability and risk, engineers ensure the built environment meets safety code to reduce risk, public policy professionals translate information into policy change, and emergency managers mitigate and respond to threats. Finding solutions to such multifaceted problems requires an interdisciplinary, collaborative approach.

However, the structure for connecting researchers and practitioners across disciplines is often unavailable, inhibiting progress on real-world problems. To address the need for an interdisciplinary approach to tackling community resilience and sustainability, we founded the Boise State HCRI. 

Our vision

  • To become a nationally recognized research and training center that facilitates the co-development and application of risk and resilience knowledge with stakeholders.
  • We aim to reduce the impacts of future hazards while cultivating social and environmental equity.