USC University of Southern California

Center for Sustainable Cities

Research & Publications

Areas of Research

The Center conducts research in two thematic areas:

Cities and Climate Change
Climate change will - and indeed in some locations already does - affect metropolitan areas in many ways. Rising sea level will affect coastal cities, making them more vulnerable to floods and various infrastructure failures. More frequent and severe storms will exacerbate risks and vulnerabilities. In Southern California, droughts and more intense heat waves will increase fire risks and affect human health. CSC conducts research on climate change mitigation and adaptation in metropolitan areas. Mitigation research includes alternative energy, energy efficiency, carbon reduction strategies. Adaptation research includes vulnerability of critical infrastructure, social and economic resilience, and community adaptation planning.

Sustainability Policies and Governance
Solving sustainability problems involves public action through collaborations with private and non-profit organizations, implementation of regulatory policies, investments in new technology development, etc. Thus government plays a key role. CSC conducts research on governance issues in sustainability. These include effective policy design, evaluation of policy outcomes, and collaborative decision-making.