Center for Applied Earth Sciences and Engineering Research Creates a New Division of Adaptation and Resilience

Dr Jazaei

The damaging effects of climate change on the natural world and its inhabitants have been seen not only here in the Mid-South but nationally. A newly created division at a research center at the University of Memphis will focus on reducing those effects both near and far.

The Division of Adaptation and Resilience expands the capacity of the Center for Applied Earth Science and Engineering Research (CAESER), addressing community needs in a critical area at a crucial time. Leading this new division will be Dr. Janey Smith Camp, a nationally recognized expert in this field who last was director of the Vanderbilt Engineering Center for Transportation and Operational Resiliency. Camp's research uses data, geographic information systems (GIS), and modeling to inform long-term planning decisions for infrastructure systems. 

“I’m thrilled to join the CAESER team,” said Camp, who earned her Ph.D. in environmental engineering from Vanderbilt in 2009. “There are so many synergies with my work and opportunities to grow the division and the other divisions to make a difference while helping communities at all levels and sizes prepare for the future.” 

Camp has led and contributed to projects sponsored by the Tennessee Department of Transportation (TDOT), the Federal Highway Administration, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS), the National Waterway Foundation, and several other agencies. 

CAESER Director Dr. Brian Waldron views this addition as beneficial not just for the Memphis metropolitan area but also at the state and national levels. This new division will expand CAESER’s capacity to address community needs in a critical area, focusing on saving lives and protecting infrastructure. It also complements the other CAESER divisions in water, mapping, transportation, and public outreach.

The Division of Adaptation and Resilience will support, educate, and advance communities’ efforts to prepare and respond to disruptions from a range of disruptive events, including climatic changes, natural hazards, and other risks. Data and tools such as GIS will be central to helping inform decisions for planning and resource management decisions utilizing a holistic, interdisciplinary approach that considers social, natural, and built systems collectively.

CAESER's mission is to strengthen communities by improving the environmental and social conditions through collaboration and research. This new division's research will support this mission by making a tangible impact on the lives of people both close to home and worldwide. 

For more information on this or other projects at CAESAR, contact caeser@memphis.edu or visit their website at caeser.memphis.edu.