Society & the Environment

CURes’ Society and the Environment research the ways that individuals, organizations, and institutions relate to their local environments. Our work has focused on two broad areas: 1) visitors’ use and perceptions of urban green spaces, and 2) locations, activities, and relationships among stewardship organizations.

Current Projects: 

Past Studies

San Bernardino County Climate Adaptations Organizations Study

With support from Edison International, CURes conducted a study to inventory existing climate change resilience organizations for San Bernardino County, CA. A climate change resilience (CCR) organization is any organization that places emphasis on building a community resilient to the effects of climate change. This includes social equity nonprofits, sustainability research programs, government agencies, and any organization that displays a goal to build community climate change resilience. Climate change resilience can be defined as the community’s ability to withstand the increasingly severe effects of climate change like drought, heat waves, and wildfires. This project identified CCR organizations that are located within San Bernardino or have definitively served and will continue to serve the county from other locations. The results of the inventory were summarized in the San Bernardino Climate Adaptation Organizations Report and displayed on the map below.

Silver Lake Reservoir User Study

CURes is working with the Silver Lake Neighborhood Council to conduct a social survey of residents regarding their use and understanding of the local reservoir to better inform city planning. Undergraduate research assistants will visit sites throughout the city to gain a holistic sampling of the population; the Silver Lake Neighborhood Council newsletter will share survey dates and times. View the Silver Lake Final Report.

Baldwin Hills Parklands User Study

CURes researchers setting up game cameras as part of the Baldwin Hills Parklands user survey.
CURes researchers setting up game cameras as part of the Baldwin Hills Parklands user survey.

CURes worked with the Baldwin Hills Conservancy to conduct a three-year (2014-2017) study of the park visitors within the Baldwin Hills Parklands. This research examined the number of visitors, where they come from, and how they use and experience each park. CURes worked with a team of 38 LMU undergraduate research assistants using multiple methods to assess park users, including visitor counts, a user survey, observational research, and a game camera study of visitation. The resulting analyses and reports will be useful for park management as well as providing evidence of the value of urban parklands. Read the full report (47MB).

LMU StudyLA Collaboration: Community Organization Surveys

CURes collaborated with the LMU Center for the Study of Los Angeles on projects in Southeast LA and Pico-Union. The aim was to provide a systematic and action-oriented assessment of leadership, research, collective action, and outcomes in two regions of Los Angeles County. CURes provided an organizational mapping study of the non-profit organizations and community groups operating in these areas. CURes also utilized STEW-MAP methodology, outlined above, but with a broader scope of environmental stewardship.

For more information about our research, contact CURes Managing Director Dr. Michele Romolini at