2018 Workshop


Highlights from iCar 2018

When: October 30 – 31, 2018

Where: University of South Florida Saint Petersburg, Room: University Student Center (USC Ballroom)

Address: 200 6th Ave South, St. Petersburg, FL 33701

This 2-day workshop, hosted by the Initiative on Coastal Adaptation and Resilience (iCAR), USF St. Petersburg, Gamma Theta Upsilon, and the Tampa Bay Regional Planning Council ONE BAY Resilient Communities Working Group, will engage participants in discussion about social and physical vulnerabilities to coastal hazards, and efforts to build regional resiliency. Through a series of presentations and followed by facilitated discussions and breakout sessions between experts from the national level, state level and  Tampa Bay regions, participants will explore potential regional solutions and approaches for addressing the resilience and adaptations of coastal cities to climate change.

In the wake of Hurricanes Irma, Harvey and Maria, we received a glimpse of what can happen in Tampa Bay area when there are multiple storms coming our way. More than ever, in the context of increased high intensity extreme weather events, we must effectively address the concepts of preparedness, resilience and adaption. Key to success are effective messaging and resilience planning that are targeted to specific audiences, and address the unique needs of distinct communities. Studies have shown that the presences of strong social networks helps with preparedness, resilience and adaptation. Recent trends in research point to the need to pay attention to those impacts of climate-related events that are not economic in nature and cannot be quantified. Emotional resilience is particularly important in neighborhoods that have experienced repeated losses and weather-related events, or where the ability to cope and respond to storms, floods, heat, etc. is a persistent and ongoing problem.

Workshop Objectives:

  • The conference will build-on previously identified research, data, and policy gaps and find strategies to link research agendas to public policy formulation that emphasizes solution-oriented approaches for coastal cities, with a particular focus on lessons learned from Irma regarding social aspect of resilience.
  • Explore enhancing social networking before and after disasters.
  • Explore innovative strategies to increase information flow before, during and after an event
  • Explore neighborhood scale innovation and challenges in social resiliency including the use of community and recreation centers and libraries as hubs for information and resource distribution
  • Explore development of community or neighborhood level preparedness, response and resilience strategies for both collective and individual preparation and recovery
  • Explore effective messaging, building on success and also identify challenges to effective messaging
  • Exploring emotional resilience and non-economic loss from climate-related events
    Publish a conference presentation called ‘Lessons Learned from Irma”.

Workshop Topics:

  • Review of current science based predictions about the likelihood of increased hurricane activity, increased storm size and effective means of communicating climate change
  • Lessons learned from FEMA and the Red Cross, especially in regard to providing assistance to vulnerable populations
  • Reports from other frontline responders about what Hurricane Irma taught them about what works, what needs to be improved, and how to advance our resiliency and recovery.
    Identifying structural barriers to recovery and resilience
  • Building energy resilience and infrastructure
  • Prioritizing safety following a disaster
  • Building health resilience and addressing emotional trauma
  • Collaboration between agencies and neighborhoods to create a team of neighborhood-level first responders through standardization of training
  • Building strength through social networks & innovative communication including integrating citizen science into addressing challenges before and after an event, to enhance preparation and resilience

Who Should Attend:

  • Citizens, and Representatives from Homeowners Associations, Neighborhood Civic organizations
  • Businesses including but not limited to: Insurance industry, Real Estate, Consulting Firms, Energy providers
  • NGOs (including those interested in environmental and social justice) and social service providers (religious organizations, affinity organizations)
  • Students, Faculty & Researchers
  • Elected Officials & Government Administrators
  • Professionals involved in coastal resilience: Transportation and Urban Planners, Floodplain Managers, Emergency Managers, Public Works, Health Professionals, Natural Resource Managers, Engineers & Scientists.


  • Network and share information with other individuals engaged in coastal resilience planning
    throughout Florida
  • Shape research agendas and future climate adaptation efforts in the Tampa Bay region and beyond


  • Welcome and Introduction, Barnali Dixon (PDF file)
  • Aresty Leadership Panel: Perspectives from the Eye of the Storm: (WUSF- Florida matters preview
  • Climate Science and Storm Predictions, Charlie Paxton 
  • Assessing the impacts: Irma, Harvey and Maria: Ecological Impacts, Ryan Moyer 
  • Assessing the impacts: Irma, Harvey and Maria: Storm Surge & Coastal Impacts, Bob Weisberg (PDF file)
  • First Responders and other Community Responders Report Back from Irma & Maria: Responding to Maria and others, Dwayne Meadows (PDF file)
  • First Responders and other Community Responders Report Back from Irma & Maria: City of St. Petersburg Emergency Management, Amber Boulding (PDF file)
  • First Responders and other Community Responders Report Back from Irma & Maria: Red Cross,  Bene Hunter (PDF file)
  • Identifying Structural Barriers to Recovery and Resilience: Stormwater system weaknesses, Kelli Hammer-Levy (PDF file)
  • Power Outages and the Elderly, Kathy Hyer (PDF file)
  • Transportation Accessibility and Barriers, Jacob Labutka (PDF file)
  • Resiliency Hubs, Kristen Baja
  • Introduction and Update on  Tampa Bay regional Coalition on Resilience, Heather Young (PDF file)
  • Community Wellbeing: Building Health Resilience and Addressing Emotional Trauma: Community Mental Health, Susan Clayton (PDF file)
  • Community Wellbeing: Building Health Resilience and Addressing Emotional Trauma : Community Resilience and Disasters, Margarethe Kusenbach (PDF file)
  • Community Emergency Response Team, Elizabeth Dunn (PDF file)
  • Storm Recovery and Building Energy Resilience and Protection of Infrastructure: Regional  Solar Coop, Angela DeMonbruen (PDF file)
  • City infrastructure reliance on the power grid, Sherri Swanson
  • Community Infrastructure & Living Shorelines post Irma assessments, Tom Ries (PDF file)
  • Global Health Initiatives: Climate Change and Global Health: Communication Strategies, Michael McDonald
  • Innovative Technology for Effective Communication and Engagement Smart Swarms, Michael D. McDonald 
  • Citizen Science, Jan Booher, RisingTogether (PDF file)
  • Crowd-Sourced SeeClickFix Apps in Pinellas, Barnali Dixon (PDF file)