Projects and Results

Against the backdrop of Louisville’s downtown, Professor Tony Arnold discusses urban resilience justice with his co-author and former Fulbright Scholar, Dr. Tiago de Melo Cartaxo, who is Senior Lecturer in Law at the University of Exeter, UK, and Invited Professor in Law at Nova University of Lisbon, Portugal.  Professor Arnold has co-authored resilience justice publications with dozens of students and former students, including Resilience Justice Fellows and Interns and Dr. Emmanuel Frimpong Boamah, who earned his Ph.D. at the University of Louisville and is a planning professor at the University of Buffalo.

The Resilience Justice Project has produced many scholarly studies that develop the theoretical foundations and practical applications of a resilience justice framework. The Resilience Justice Project has also worked with community-based organizations, community residents, and government agencies in several different low-income communities of color in California, DC, Florida, and Kentucky, among other places. This work has included studies, policy reforms, and governance changes to promote resilience and justice in low-income communities of color.

Some of the key insights developed by the Resilience Justice Project:

  1. The effects of systemic injustices on community capacities and the needs for systemic reform to achieve both justice and community resilience;
  2. The particular roles of green and blue infrastructure (e.g., streams and waters, parks, trees, vegetation, etc.) in the adaptive capacities of communities;
  3. The particular roles of social capital (e.g., cooperation, trust, organizations, leaders), community empowerment, and grassroots activism in the adaptive capacities of communities;
  4. The need for both inclusive governance processes and co-governance structures to advance resilience justice and empower communities from the bottom up, not just the top down;
  5. The particular vulnerabilities of low-income communities of color to many shocks and changes, including climate change, economic shocks, political change, disasters (e.g., flooding, heat, drought, wildfires), pollution, health crises, and many other disruptions.
  6. The particular problems of gentrification and green gentrification as threats to community vitality and justice.

An example of a publication from the Resilience Justice Project is “Resilience Justice and Community-Based Green and Blue Infrastructure” by Craig Anthony (Tony) Arnold and Resilience Justice Project Researchers, published in the William & Mary Environmental Law & Policy Review (2021).