Over 1,000 local climate and energy practitioners and senior government officials from more than 300 communities have attended ISC's Sustainable Communities Leadership Academy. The Academy addresses some of the primary sectors for achieving meaningful climate action, and each workshop tackles key, topic-specific challenges based on what city and regional practitioners identify as being among the greatest barriers to effective climate solutions.more
Since 1999, we have worked with communities in the United States to help them envision and plan for sustainable futures. Our current work strengthens local communities through intensive peer-learning workshops, the development and sharing of high-quality information on sustainability practices and tools, and with direct technical assistance. By working with community leaders to solve their challenges and improve their skills, we advance, accelerate and scale-up local solutions to the global challenges of climate protection and sustainable development.
Over 1,000 local climate and energy practitioners and senior government officials from more than 300 communities have attended ISC's Sustainable Communities Leadership Academy. The Academy addresses some of the primary sectors for achieving meaningful climate action, and each workshop tackles key, topic-specific challenges based on what city and regional practitioners identify as being among the greatest barriers to effective climate solutions.
In Southeast Florida, ISC is working with four counties under the auspices of the Southeast Florida Regional Climate Change Compact to pioneer a regional climate governance model designed to enable local governments to set the agenda for climate change solutions while providing an efficient means to coordinate the engagement of state and federal agency engagement. The Compact has completed and published a five-year Action Plan that maps out an unprecedented and highly collaborative effort to respond to climate change on a regional scale.
In partnership with the State of Vermont and working closely with key stakeholders from the business and environmental communities, ISC launched the Resilient Vermont Project. Building on the strong response to devastation caused by Tropical Storm Irene, the Project will guide the state's transition from recovery efforts to adaptation and mitigation planning, helping to make Vermont a model of community, economic, and environmental resilience.
The Sustainable Communities Learning Network accelerates the work of sustainability practitioners across the country who are working with federal grants from the Partnership for Sustainable Communities. ISC, in partnership with Smart Growth America, manages capacity building services for the network and provides in-person and web-based support through Sustainable Communities Leadership Academy workshops and the Sustainable Communities Learning Network website.
Through the Gulf Coast Sustainable Communities Network, ISC worked with coastal communities to build the tools, skills and confidence needed to create more socially, economically, and environmentally healthy and resilient communities in the wake of disasters, with a special focus on connecting smaller towns and rural areas.
An integrated program of community exchanges, training workshops, technical assistance, and support for emerging leaders provided an avenue for civic leaders from across the Gulf Coast to share information and ideas, learn from and support each other’s activities, and take small programs and local innovations to scale.
Our goal was to leave behind a lasting legacy of cooperation, so we were delighted to transition ISC’s role as convener and facilitator to the Gulf Coast Fund for Community Renewal and Ecological Health in January 2011.
- As Moss Point, Mississippi city leaders created a new post-Katrina vision of sustainability for their city, they also reached out to residents, who are now actively participating in day-to-day decision-making. Two new community advisory task forces help guide major development decisions and serve as an important new model for the city to engage residents and community in the rebuilding effort and beyond.
- After interviewing over 500 people for the New England Futures Project, ISC and its partners published a series of articles in 2006 examining critical issues facing the region that were published in 27 news outlets in all six states.
- From 2001 to 2007, the Leadership for a Changing World program recognized 163 innovative leaders across the United States for their community-based approaches to social change.
- Launched with our help in 1999, the Burlington Legacy Project in Burlington, Vermont continues to change the face of the city through such initiatives as bringing youth onto boards of directors, the adoption of an open space protection plan, a rewrite of zoning laws, a no-idling campaign and ordinance change, bringing healthier and local food into schools, and an anti-racism action plan.
ISC launched the Gulf Coast Sustainable Economies Leadership Academy to help smaller, primarily low-income communities explore how energy efficiency, renewable energy, and ecological restoration can revitalize their economies. 20 communities from four Gulf states sent teams to the Academy.view slideshow
Building on our work in Moss Point, Mississippi, we launched the Gulf Coast Sustainable Communities Network, which is helping communities make informed choices about their future.more
Like its neighbors along the Gulf Coast, the city of Moss Point, Mississippi suffered tremendous devastation during Hurricane Katrina. Today, ISC is helping city officials become stronger leaders, a fledgling nonprofit grow to better serve its community, and the city's poorest neighborhoods—severely flooded by Katrina—engage in the rebuilding process.more
Many Communities, One Future
Meet some of the extraordinary members of the Gulf Coast Sustainable Communities Network. You can also view a more in-depth version of this video by clicking here.
Ron Sims, Deputy Secretary of HUD
Deputy Secretary Ron Sims talks about building prosperous regional economies that are both sustainable and equitable.