Earthwatch Institute launched the Urban Resiliency Program recognizing the need for more data-driven solutions and civic engagement in addressing urban challenges. The program started in 2014 in Los Angeles to fill critical research needs about creating resilient urban environments and providing opportunities for the public to become involved in doing real science about their local environment in a fun way. While the program began in the Southern California area, we aim to expand and engage people globally. 

Co-designed and co-produced as a large scale collaborative venture, the Urban Resiliency Program works with Dr. Darrel Jenerette and his lab at University of California Riverside, and many other partners to create field research programs that engage the public and lead to more informed decisions. To support this research, program partners are then engaged in specific citizen science activities across greater Los Angeles to contribute the large quantities of data needed to improve our understanding of how our actions can help build a more resilient urban biosphere.


The Urban Resiliency Program is where citizens and institutions actively contribute in science-informed activities to build communities that are cooler, healthier, and use less water by increasing urban tree cover.


Earthwatch Institute is an international environmental non-profit organization based in Boston, Massachusetts. For over 45 years, we bring individuals from all walks of life together with world-class scientists to work for the good of the planet. The Earthwatch community continues to grow rapidly, with participation from members of the general public we call “citizen scientists,” to corporate employees, to educators and students.

Earthwatch volunteers bring their knowledge, passion, and experience to support our work, improve scientific understanding, and inspire change across all touch-points in their lives. Our vision is a world in which we live sustainably, in balance with nature. 

Find out about our newest program Operation Healthy Air which will engage partners and participants to map and measure how differences in their environment – such as the amount of trees or pavement, affect local air quality and temperature. Stay involved and explore Operation Healthy Air related events and training materials. Contact us at to learn more.

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