Topical Tag: Urban Issues

The Magazine

2018 Pritzker Finalists: Miranda Wang, Asha de Vos, Chioma Ukonu

UCLA Institute of the Environment and Sustainability is proud to announce the 2018 Pritzker Emerging Environmental Genius Award finalists, as selected by a faculty committee. Chioma Ukonu, Asha de Vos and Miranda Wang were chosen from a pool of 20 candidates to move on to the next round of judging. Ukonu pioneered a recycling program...

UCLA students dig into Santa Monica Pier’s waste problem

If global food waste were a country, it would be the third highest emitter of greenhouse gases, behind only China and the United States. A team of UCLA students investigated the problem this year in one of the most iconic places in California. The Santa Monica Pier, with nine million yearly visitors, is a visible...

Understanding cities as more than just things

With human impacts thus concentrated, you might expect urban areas to be a focal point of environmental research. That hasn’t always been the case, said Stephanie Pincetl, director of the California Center for Sustainable Communities at UCLA. In her recent paper titled “Cities in the Age of the Anthropocene: Climate change agents and the potential...


Lecture Series

Desalination: Should salt water play a role in our sustainable future?

A & Santa Monica Pier event


Sixty percent of L.A.County’s water comes from hundreds of miles away. Obtaining and transporting trillions of gallons each year requires a lot of energy and puts enormous strain on ecosystems and human communities upstream. Meanwhile, climate change is about to up the ante. Almost two-thirds of the California’s fresh water comes from the Sierra Nevada,...

Special Event

99% Preservation and 1% Densification

A Case for Urban Density along the Wilshire Corridor


The plan accommodates the city’s anticipated population increase—1.5 million people by 2050—by densifying less than one percent of its land. Comparing Wilshire Boulevard to major streets in other global metropolises, including Barcelona’s Avenida Diagonal and New York’s Broadway, they model real-world responses to growth and transformation that offer more sustainable strategies for Los Angeles. Moderated...

Lecture Series

Luskin Innovators Speaker Series: Parks and Technology

Discussion with Anastasia Loukaitou-Sideris


Join the UCLA Luskin Center for Innovation in welcoming Anastasia Loukaitou-Sideris to discuss her research and new report, SMART Parks: A Toolkit. The evening event will include a reception with hors d’oeuvres and refreshments, presentation, panel discussion, audience Q&A, and book signing. Featured speaker: Anastasia Loukaitou-Sideris, UCLA Panelists include: Tamika Butler, Los Angeles Neighborhood Land...


Liz Koslov

Assistant Professor

Department of Urban Planning, Institute of the Environment and Sustainability

Sean Kennedy

Post Doctoral Researcher

California Center for Sustainable Communities at UCLA

Robert Cudd, MPP

Research Analyst

California Center for Sustainable Communities at UCLA

Asma Mahdi

Guest writer & communications manager for Sustainable L.A. Grand Challenge

Sustainable L.A. Grand Challenge


Assessment and Revitalization of the Boneyard at Sage Hill for Mixed Use Purposes

The Boneyard at Sagehill The Urban Nature Laboratory team will be focusing on three main objectives this year. Firstly, we will be conducting research and reaching out to other institutions and facilities to develop improvement and management strategies for the Sagehill/Boneyard site. Secondly, we will conduct surveys and interviews of targeted faculty members, staff, and students to gauge how...

An Institutional Guideline for Ecologically Sound and Aesthetic Landscaping

The Biodiversity and Landscaping Team is a group dedicated to enhancing the ecology of the UCLA campus. We believe that being ecologically sound and aesthetically pleasing are not mutually exclusive. UCLA was once a biodiversity hotspot along with the rest of the LA Basin. With our project, we hope to formulate a policy that the university can implement that...


Groundwater Exchange Pools and Urban Water Supply Sustainability: Modeling Directed and Undirected Networks

E. Porse, K. Mika, R. Williams, M. Gold. W. Blomquist, S. Pincetl

Published Work | 2018 | Journal of Water Resources Planning and Management

The economic value of local water supplies in Los Angeles

E. Porse, K. Mika, E. Litvak, K. Manago, T. Hogue, M. Gold, D. Pataki, S. Pincetl

Published Work | 2018 | Nature Sustainability

In the News



Preparing for a new, hotter normal

What is Los Angeles doing to reduce blackouts during these heat waves? Lauren Hunt joined Madeline Brand on KCRW's Press Play to speak on what the city and utility companies are working on and what you can do to help reduce blackouts and your carbon footprint.



Can L.A.’s Frogtown Survive Gentrification?

With the revitalization of the LA River, the nearby city, Frogtown, fears the consequences. "Green gentrification" is the idea that the new green spaces will change the neighborhood by increasing the property value and pushing out the community. “The danger here is that the fear of green gentrification could lead to opposition to parks and open spaces in neighborhoods that are particularly poor. We know that the exposure to nature and the ability to be outdoors is good for people. These are neighborhoods that need more parks, need more access to nature and have historically not had that,” said UCLA professor, Jon Christensen.



Surrendering to Rising Seas

Jen Schwartz from Scientific American looks into a resident's experience of living in a New Jersey floodplain after Superstorm Sandy. It was the third time that the neighborhood was hit with floodwaters within 3 years and their homes needed constant fixing and updates. UCLA's Liz Koslov wrote, "the complexity and ambivalence of retreat serves as a reminder that there are no easy solutions and that it is not possible to rebuild forever or to wall ourselves off from the problems we face."


From Farms to Cities: Percolating New Ideas for Water Security

Sustainable Conservation a non-profit and IoES practicum client partner produced this video from an event held Sept 6, 2017 Following winter rains that pummeled the state, it’s easy for California’s five-year drought to recede in our memories. Resisting that amnesia is essential to our Golden State’s water future. We will explore how farms and cities...