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December 21, 2011  |  e-newsletter

Our Year in Review

Dear Friends and Colleagues,


As 2011 winds down, this is an appropriate moment to take stock of where we are at the Udall Center and the Native Nations Institute, to consider the challenges -- especially financial ones -- that we have had to address this past year, and to reflect on the many achievements we have realized.


Our mission, like that of the University of Arizona, is to enrich and improve the lives of the people of Arizona, the nation, and the world through research, education, and public service. At the Udall Center, we work in three policy areas: environmental, Indigenous nations, and immigration.


To do so, we convene public meetings, workshops, and training sessions; we produce policy briefs and educational materials; we publish books and research articles; we lecture in classrooms and present at professional gatherings; we create dialogues to link policy with science, the environment, economics, immigration, and governance; and we build bridges across borders, physical and intellectual, to connect with our colleagues.


In this process, we meet face to face with our "constituents" -- the people and organizations with and for whom we work -- learning what they need and how what we do can benefit their lives, communities, and governments.


When we think about the conversations we've had and about the promises we make to ourselves and to others, we are reminded of why we do what we do. We are a bit humbled, perhaps, by the vast scope of the world and the limited size of our role in it, but we remain inspired and dedicated to continue to learn, teach, and serve.


We list below some highlights of our achievements for 2011 and offer links to documents and other resources that you might find useful.


While this has been a year of exceptional achievement, it also has been a year of difficulty. We have experienced significant financial cuts that have limited our operations and staff. While we continue to be successful in garnering grants for specific projects and programs, our resources for day-to-day functioning have become more and more scarce.


At this end-of-year time, as many of you consider tax-deductible contributions, we invite your support for our endeavors. Donations may be made through the University of Arizona Foundation online giving site, or you can contact either of us at or, or at 520 626-4393.


With best wishes to you for the holidays and the New Year,


Steve Cornell & Bob Varady


Highlights of 2011

This past year, the staff of the Udall Center and Native Nations Institute:
Published documents to assist and inform diverse audiences 

Native Nations and U.S. Borders: Challenges to Indigenous Culture, Citizenship, and Security

by R. Starks, J. McCormack, and S. Cornell

2011. Udall Center Publications. 103 p.

> more (website)


Moving Forward from Vulnerability to Adaptation: Climate Change, Drought, and Water Demand in the Urbanizing Southwestern United States and Northern Mexico

edited by M Wilder, C.A. Scott, N. Pineda, R.G. Varady, and G.M. Garfin

2011. Udall Center Publications. 195 p.

> more (pdf)


Water and Climate Modeling in Large Basins (Vol. 1)

edited by R.C. Vieira da Silva, C.E.M. Tucci, and C.A. Scott
Associacao Brasileira de Recursos Hidricos.

> more (website)


Guidance on Links between Water Reclamation and Reuse and Regional Growth

by C.A. Scott, A. Browning-Aiken, K.J. Ormerod, R.G. Varady, C.D. Mogollon, and C. Tessmer

2011. Report 6-16-1. WateReuse Research Foundation. 67 p.

> more (website)


Making First Nation Law: The Listuguj Mi'Gmaq Fishery

by S. Cornell, R. Goldtooth, M. Jorgensen, R. Starks, and others.

2010 (publicly available January 2011). Native Nations Institute and National Centre for First Nations Governance. 35 p.

> more (pdf)


A North American Greenprint: Next Steps in Developing Adaptive Capacity for Transboundary Conservation Under Climate Change

by L Lopez-Hoffman, B.J. Morehouse, and L.J. Graumlich

2011. Environmental Policy Working Papers. Udall Center Publications.10 p.

> more (pdf-english)
> more (pdf-spanish)

Journal articles and other documents

Members of the Udall Center and NNI staff published several book chapters as well as articles in these peer-reviewed journals:
Ambio (Lopez-Hoffman)
Energy Policy (Scott)
Environmental Economics (Lopez-Hoffman)
Geoforum (Scott)
Journal of Environmental Policy & Planning (Browning-Aiken and Scott)
Journal of Hydrology (Scott)
Natural Resources Journal (Scott)
Rangelands (Lopez-Hoffman)
Water (Scott)
Water International (Scott; Varady)
Water Resources Research (Scott)


Conducted research on critical issues of public concern 

Climate adaptation in the arid Southwest

Supported by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, this project builds on a recently completed study in the region and examines water management and the role of climate knowledge in building decision-making capacity in the drought-prone U.S.-Mexico border region.

> more (website)


Ecology and water resources in arid-region stream corridors

With funding from the National Science Foundation, this study seeks to understand better how humans affect the environment in the Upper San Pedro River and the Rio Sonora basins of Arizona and Sonora to provide beneficial knowledge for stakeholder decision-making.

> more (website)


Transboundary ecosystem services of migratory bats

With a grant from the National Science Foundation, this research aims to understand how the ecosystem services provided by migratory bats in one location might be supported by habitat in different locations and how the economic benefits are distributed across space and time.

> more (website)


Social determinants of health in Native American communities

Supported by the W.K. Kellogg Foundation, this research will examine factors outside the traditional health care system that influence the health and wellness of Native Americans and that are amenable to action by Native nations.

> more (news release)


Indigenous governance in Australia

Through a project funded by the Australian Research Council and based at the Jumbunna Indigenous House of Learning at the University of Technology, Sydney, this study looks closely at governance challenges and solutions in two Indigenous communities in Australia.
> more (website)

Economic contributions of immigrants in the United States
With funding from the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, this study analyzes the role of immigrants in the U.S. economy and measures the economic output that can be attributed to these workers.
> more (website)

Convened innovative training programs and opportunities for public dialogue


Delivered 14 executive education seminars and training sessions

to leaders of U.S. Indigenous nations, reaching a total of more than 500 participants from some 50 nations (including sessions organized for the Bush Foundation Rebuilders Program; see below).

> more (website)


Assisted the Bush Foundation with its Native Nations Rebuilders Program,

which supports the self-determination of 23 Native nations in the foundation's Upper Midwest service area, by convening 12 strategic planning, executive education, and governance analysis sessions for the program's participants.

> more (website)


Developed two "Rebuilding Native Nations" distance-learning short courses

"Economic Development" and "Intergovernmental Relations" (in a series that builds on the book, Rebuilding Native Nations: Strategies for Governance and Development, edited by M. Jorgensen) and, relatedly, with support from the U.S. Small Business Administration, launched an online certificate program in economic development for faculty and staff at three-dozen tribal colleges.

> more (website)


Created a continuing education certificate program in Indigenous governance,

developed with the Indigenous Peoples' Law and Policy Program at the University of Arizona's Rogers College of Law and the UA Native Peoples Technical Assistance Office and to be offered at the UA law school beginning in spring 2012.

> more (website)

Convened several policy dialogues and other interactive discussions
-- via our role as a trusted, objective, university-based facilitator -- for diverse groups of stakeholders and decision-makers on topics connecting public policy with science, water resources and the environment, economic development, immigration, and governance.

Udall Center  

Established in 1987, the Udall Center for Studies in Public Policy sponsors policy-relevant, interdisciplinary research and forums that link scholarship and education with decision-making. The Center specializes in issues concerning: (1) environmental policy, primarily in the Southwest and U.S.-Mexico border region; (2) immigration policy of the United States; and (3) Indigenous nations policy.


Stephen Cornell, Director

(520) 626-4393  


Robert G. Varady, Deputy Director
(520) 626-4393  



Native Nations Institute  

The Native Nations Institute for Leadership, Management, and Policy (NNI), founded in 2001 by the Morris K. Udall Foundation (now Morris K. Udall and Stewart L. Udall Foundation) and the University of Arizona and housed at the Udall Center, serves as a self-determination, governance, and development resource for Indigenous nations in the United States, Canada, and elsewhere.


Joan Timeche, Executive Director
(520) 626-0664

Miriam Jorgensen, Research Director 

(520) 626-0664  



Robert Merideth, Editor in Chief
(520) 626-4393
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