Pre-conference Summit

October 17-19, 2013, Fort Lauderdale, FL
Host School: Florida Atlantic University
Co-chairs: Anthony Abbate, Florida Atlantic University; Francis Lyn, Florida Atlantic University; Rosemary Kennedy, Queensland University of Technology


Florida Atlantic University’s Center for Environmental Studies is hosting its 2nd Annual Sea Level Rise Summit 2013: Resilience in the Face of Change on October 16th & 17th in the heart of downtown Fort Lauderdale’s Arts and Entertainment District and within walking distance of multiple planned events, including: two full days of exceptional speakers and panel sessions, important keynotes, two screenings of the film Shored Up and a newly added Sea Level Rise Adaptation Workshop on Friday October 18th. The Summit will take place at The Conference Center, 301 East Broward Blvd, Fort Lauderdale, Florida, 33301.  This year's Summit is in partnership with the Association of Collegiate Schools of Architecture’s Subtropical Cities Conference taking place October 17-19. 

The risks from sea level rise are imminent and serious. This is not a distant problem, but one that is affecting us now and will certainly affect our children. Sea level rise will impact millions of Americans and threaten billions of dollars of building and infrastructure. Focusing on the impacts on our economy, health and built environment, this year’s Sea Level Rise Summit will address the issues that professionals, local governments and communities face in adapting to sea level rise and other climate change related impacts. Local, national and international experts will demonstrate best practices and state of the art research focusing on the needs of those planning our collective future.  

Sea Level Rise and Storm Surge: A Damaging Combination

  • Taking stock of our scientific knowledge of sea level rise, understanding storm surge & its damage on natural and built environments, and examining possibilities for collaboration between scientists and design professionals for the adaptation and resilience of vulnerable communities confronted with the dual threat of sea level rise and storm surge.


Adversity, Opportunity and Resilience: Economic Implications of Sea Level Rise

  • Examining economic impacts of sea level rise with a focus on the power, insurance and real estate industries, exploring opportunities for businesses and the issues that government, business, and society will face, including rising mitigation and adaptation costs and economic sustainability in the face of environmental uncertainty. 


Integrating the Health Impacts of Sea Level Rise into Resiliency & Adaptation Planning

  • Identifying on-going efforts and gaps in understanding the health impacts of sea level rise on resiliency and adaptation planning and providing perspectives from local, state, and federal partners illuminating the need to increase community resilience to the adverse public health impacts of climate change. 


Impacts on the Built Environment – Facing a New Design Paradigm

  • Examining the issues facing aging and/or vulnerable public infrastructure such as roads, utilities, electrical grid, water and waste management, and exploring new approaches to design thinking that should drive decisions in the immediate, near, and long-term future, along with addressing the needs of architects, planners and others charged with designing the built environment in the face of sea level rise and other climate change related impacts.


Adaptation, Innovation & Resilience on a Local, National & International Front

  • Identifying a potential adaptation strategy tool kit for Florida and by extension similar coastal areas nationally and globally and developing a concise set of recommendations for mitigation and adaptation approaches and priorities aiming at truly sustainable adaptation, linking local experience with insights from our international experts.  


We encourage community members, federal, state and local governments and agencies, non-profits, decision makers and professionals to join us at the Sea Level Rise Summit as we collectively work to ensure the sustainability and safety of our communities by understanding and planning for the effects of sea level rise.