The Las Vegas City Council approved a resolution at its meeting April 3 to establish a community resiliency initiative with the UNLV Greenspun College of Urban Affairs.
The local government-higher education partnership will give the City of Las Vegas and UNLV an opportunity to determine and address the shocks and stresses that could impact the entire community, and the capacity of individuals, communities, institutions, business, and systems within a city to survive, adapt, and grow.
For example, human-made and environmentally caused impacts – such as terrorism, sustainability, or a variety of family or social chronic issues such as homelessness – may have far-reaching implications for the community, regional economy, and infrastructure.
“The City of Las Vegas has long been a recognized national leader for sustainability. We’ve worked hard with our regional partners to mitigate the effects of flash flooding and drought and have been proactive through coordinated emergency management training to ensure our community is prepared for whatever event might occur,” said Tom Perrigo, executive director of community development and chief sustainability officer for the City of Las Vegas. “Resilient communities rebound from shocks and stresses; we’re looking forward to partnering with UNLV’s Greenspun College of Urban Affairs on strategies that will make Las Vegas a recognized national leader in resilience as well.”
The partners will collaborate with community stakeholders to guide urban management and policy decisions. They’ll also leverage resources and relationships from UNLV and the city to build community leadership and develop a framework that places Las Vegas and Southern Nevada on a path to becoming a sustainable, prepared, and resilient city for generations.
“The Greenspun College of Urban Affairs develops solutions for progressive and resilient cities,” said Robert. R. Ulmer, dean of the Greenspun College of Urban Affairs. “Resilient communities are proactive and prepared to address their challenges. The citizens of effective cities are willing to work together and engage their communities to develop solutions to address those challenges together. The city already has some incredible successes in the area of resilience. We look forward to working with the City of Las Vegas to support its current successes and create new solutions that make Las Vegas the most progressive, engaged, and resilient city in the world.”
Research teams will be drawn from the College of Urban Affairs’ relevant faculty experts in emergency and crisis management, trauma-informed care, criminal justice reform, conflict resolution, public policy, tourism safety, interpersonal violence, and behavioral health.
“Las Vegas is a progressive city that embraces innovation and change. Our college is driven by those same values. Our combined expertise and capacity for community engagement is a natural relationship,” Ulmer said.
About the UNLV Greenspun College of Urban Affairs
The Greenspun College of Urban Affairs prepares undergraduate and graduate students to lead, collaborate, and innovate through research, a cutting-edge curriculum, and public-private partnerships. The college is committed to creating contemporary solutions for resilient communities; therefore, our academic programs focus on civic engagement. Our schools and departments emphasize the following: sound public policymaking, creating strong support structures to address behavioral and mental health needs, ensuring cities are safe and prepared for emergency situations, and creating an informed citizenry through effective communication, journalism, and digital storytelling.