Region Matters


  May 6th, 2013  Vol. 3. Issue 29                        

This week the CRC is announcing the launch of an exciting new project that will have impact on the well-being of California's Central Valley residents. Read below for details on this ground-breaking research! 

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In This Issue
CRC Innovations
CRC Impact
Regional Change in the News
Upcoming Events
Grants and Employment Opportunities
CRC Innovations



rabobank image The Center for Regional Change and Rabobank have partnered to develop The UC Davis CRC-Rabobank Rural Opportunity Index (ROI), a new index of community and regional opportunity for the 19 counties of California's Central Valley. The goal of the ROI is to guide investments by Rabobank and other organizations under the Community Reinvestment Act (CRA) toward people and places with the greatest need, to foster thriving communities of opportunity for all Californians.


The ROI will incorporate both a "people" component (with a range of socio-demographic factors including designation of low and moderate-income households as specified by CRA) and a "place" component (with economic, infrastructure, environmental, and social indicators). This geo-referenced index will be viewable at the regional, county, census tract, and zip code levels as feasible and constructed to facilitate comparisons between census tracts of the 18-county region and, eventually, the state as a whole.  An open architecture will allow new data sets to be added over time.  The ROI and its interactive mapping platform will be publically available on the CRC website.


Why a Rural Opportunity Index?

Rural communities in California's Central Valley and elsewhere in the state are both significant sources of wealth and places of concentrated poverty. Enabling the Central Valley and California to thrive will require focused rural investment to build economic and social capacity. Effective investment decisions require rigorous information about need and opportunity across the region. Most current data and mapping tools are either organized at too large a geographic scale (e.g., counties) or fragmented on an issue-by-issue basis, limiting their utility. Enhancing CRA practices to benefit low and moderate-income households requires a next generation of data and mapping tools that provide finer-grained and holistic analyses of communities. 


The ROI will provide banks, policy makers, advocates and other key leaders with an powerful tool to identify communities with high levels of vulnerability and communities with characteristics that suggest social and economic opportunity. The ROI will assess key measures of community well-being, as well as track how community and regional opportunity vary over time and place.


CRC team members for the UC Davis Center for Regional Change/Rabobank Rural Opportunity Index include: Chris Benner, Jonathan London, Nancy Erbstein, Teri GreenfieldCassie Hartzog and Mindy Romero. 

CRC Impact


The Center for Regional Change - Healthy Youth Healthy Environments Initiative invites you to attend an upcoming event: 



                                                Dr. Susan Bissell 


 The Protection of Children in Our Globalizing World:


May 13th 5:00pm

UC Davis - Hunt 100

Just North of Freeborn Hall

Poster Display & Reception


                                                       Hunt 142

As UNICEF's Chief of Child Protection, Dr. Susan Bissell oversees a team guiding efforts to prevent and respond to all forms of violence against children. Her previous roles include working in UNICEF's Sri Lanka, Bangladesh and India offices, collaborating with Trudi Styler and Catherine and Tareque Masud to produce the documentary "A Kind of Childhood," and leading research related to child rights and child protection through the Innocenti Research Center, Change, Challenge and Champions.


Sponsored by: UC Davis CAES, Department of Human Ecology, and UC ANR

For more information contact: or download the flyer here

Center for Regional Change - Healthy Youth Healthy Environments Initiative

Regional Change in the News

California now ranks No. 1 in the nation for workers living in poverty and the trend is worsening. A new report by the Campaign for College Opportunity, "Working Hard, Left Behind" details the economic state of California's low-income adults and finds that low educational attainment is the one common characteristic of the working poor. 

The official release and overview of the report on:

May 8th, 2013 at 10am. 

Speakers will include:

Michele Siqueiros, Executive Director of the Campaign for College Opportunity 

Judy Patrick, President & CEO of The Women's Foundation of California

A representative of the Regional Economic Association Leaders of California

For more information, click here


The Utah Model: Lessons for Regional Planning - A summary from Brookings Mountain West Report  

Utah has become an unlikely leader in regional planning through a voluntary  partnership of key leaders, agencies, local government, and the general public. Given that regional planning efforts around the nation have generally evoked strong reactions from residents concerned about losing local control, the success of Envision Utah-the organization that emerged as a key driver of regional planning in Utah-in building a consensus around regional growth management holds lessons for other regions. Click here to read the report. 

Upcoming Events

Help support creating a mural at Winters High School! Over 100 high school students are designing and painting a beautiful mural on their art building at Winters High School!  They need paint and other supplies! Help raise money for supplies at a fundraiser, where they get 30% of all PIZZA sales. Just mention WINTERS MURAL PROJECT! Buy a dine in or carry out PIZZA at Lamppost Pizza Davis, 1260 Lake Blvd., on Thursday May 9th from 4-9 pm.


Academics Without Borders, Canada.

Steven Davis, Executive Director, Founder

The Mission of AWBC is to assist developing countries strengthen their institutions of higher education to enable them to educate the professionals they need for their development.

Since 2009, AWBC has completed almost 30 projects in 14 countries including Benin, Chile, Indonesia, Kenya, Ethiopia, Ghana, Liberia, Namibia, Nepal, Nigeria, Rwanda, Sierra Leone, and Uganda. These projects have been in health and nursing, teaching and learning methodology, and various disciplines including IT and computing science. Dr. Davis will give an overview of AWBC's projects and discuss opportunities for volunteers and donors.

Thursday, May 9, 2013, 4:10 p.m.

Hart Hall, 3201

Co-sponsored by the Vice-Provost, University Outreach and International Programs, the Department of Philosophy, the Blum Center for Developing Economies, Professor Kurt Kornbluth and the UC Davis D-LAB, and the Dean of the Division of Social Science.


Eric Bradford & Charlie Rominger Agricultural Sustainability Leadership Award Ceremony

Honoring an individual who has exhibited the leadership, work ethic and integrity epitomized

by livestock geneticist Dr. Eric Bradford and sustainable farmer Charlie Rominger. The award recipient will be announced prior to the event.

Wednesday, May 22, 4:30 p.m.

Buehler Alumni and Visitors Center

Changing the Way We Think about Food

Free and open to the public.Featuring speaker Craig McNamara, organic farmer, president of the California State Board of Food and Agriculture, and founder and president of the Center for Land-Based Learning. For more information, click here

Grants and Employment Opportunities 

Post Doctoral Position, Sam Houston State University: The Department of Sociology and the Center for Rural Studies at Sam Houston State University announces an opening for a Postdoctoral Fello position to begin Fall 2013. Application review will begin May 3, 2013 and continue until filled. To apply for position, please follow this link:


Post-Doctoral Fellow, Auburn University, Department of Agricultural Economics and Rural Sociology: This position is a 1 year limited term, non-tenure, accruing position. Continuance (up to 2 additional years), is based on satisfactory performance and availability of funding. Post-Doctoral Fellow positions are available for a maximum appointment of four years and the appointment may begin as early as July 1, 2013. Full-time employees of Auburn University are eligible for an attractive benefits package which can be reviewed at h Interested applicants, click here for full posting.


Community Development Extension Field Specialist, South Dakota State University: Looking for an individual to join us in growing and building our regional extension center located in Aberdeen, SD.  The position is open until filled but the first review of applicants will occur May 21, 2013.  For details follow this link.  For additional information contact Kenneth Sherin at or Call 605-995-7378.