Symposium to explore climate change in the Caribbean, South Florida

By Barbara Gutierrez

Symposium to explore climate change in the Caribbean, South Florida

By Barbara Gutierrez
The multidisciplinary forum in April will explore lessons learned from the regions. There is a call for papers to be presented, but abstracts must be submitted by Jan. 17.

The effects of climate change continue to affect vulnerable areas throughout the Caribbean and South Florida. As the earth warms, the region will feel more intense weather, which will bring stronger hurricanes and other catastrophic events.

To address these pressing issues, the University of Miami will host the virtual symposium “Sub Tropical and Tropical Coastal Resilience: Social, Economic, and Physical Adaptations in South Florida and the Caribbean” on April 7, 2021.

The University of Miami School of Architecture, the Institute for Advanced Study of the Americas, the Graduate School, and the Center for Urban and Community Design, with the collaboration of the Master of Professional Science in Urban Sustainability and Resilience program, are calling for papers for the spring forum. The deadline for the submission of abstracts is Sunday, Jan. 17. 

“This multidisciplinary symposium will explore lessons garnered from our South Florida and the Caribbean reality and aid in understanding their applicability across the region and beyond,” said Sonia Chao, research associate professor at the School of Architecture.

“This gathering of social and physical scientists, economists, scholars, and public sector and non-profit leaders from around the region will explore the interconnected and salient climate-induced or climate-aggravated aspects directly affecting people in the region.”

Chao added that the symposium organizers’ collective goal is “to better appreciate the associations between climate stressors, such as physical, societal, and economic vulnerabilities. This includes racial injustices and climate shocks, such as extreme weather events, as well as the correlated challenges and opportunities each presents.” 

The virtual seminar, will be divided into three areas—mobility, metabolisms, and resilience. And a broad range of submissions are being sought that fall under the three umbrella topics. In addition to peer-reviewed papers, submissions focused on policy, design, and practice are also encouraged.

“Our multidisciplinary approach to organizing the event and in selecting topics and subtopics are both reflections of the many layers to social, physical, and economic resilience,” Chao said. “We know that moving forward the answers to our challenges are likely to be found in the intersections between disciplines. Resilience cannot be tackled nor effectively addressed by unilateral research or actions but rather through collaboration and cross-pollination. That is why UM is well positioned to lead alongside our regional and local partners across all sectors.”

Visit for more information on the symposium.