Indices of Sustainability
When representatives from UC Davis and Diamond Developers met in Dubai in March, 2014 they discussed the challenges of measuring community-level sustainability in arid climates. They were interested in metrics that would examine ongoing community environmental and economic impacts, as well as resident behaviors.
The SRTP program convened a task force of UC Davis faculty to explore the issues involved in the development an indices system appropriate for the Middle East and North Africa region which would include social aspects of sustainability. This team of UC Davis researchers identified several approaches which varied from adaptation of existing sustainability metrics to the creation of an entirely new system. Task force members included Suad Joseph, Distinguished Research Professor of Anthropology and Women & Gender Studies; Bryan Jenkins, Professor of Biological and Agricultural Engineering; Jim Quinn, Professor of Biological and Agricultural Engineering, Director of the Information Center for the Environment; Alan Meier, Energy Efficiency Center, Visiting Scientist and Researcher, Senior Scientist, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory; Nicole Biggart, Professor of Management and Sociology, Chevron Chair in Energy Efficiency, Director of the Energy Efficiency Center; Karen Beardsley, Managing Director, Information Center for the Environment; and Francesca Wright, Analyst for the SRTP Program.
By October 2015, it was decided not to pursue a definitive method of developing comprehensive indices. Instead, both Diamond Developers and UC Davis agreed to develop methods to measure priority indicators independently.