Region Matters


June 10, 2014  Vol. 4 - Issue 27  

Hello CRC Community,

Jonathan London

CRC Director

We hope you enjoy this week's edition of Region Matters.  Please send us your own updates, publications or other items to feature in Region Matters

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CRC Spotlight
New Research of Interest
Regionally-Relevant Events
Environmental Achievement Award Nominations
Employment/Internship Opportunities
About Us: The UC Davis Center for Regional Change
  CRC Spotlight

CRC Presents to the US Environmental Protection Agency

On June 11, CRC Director Jonathan London and Professor Chris Benner will present the Regional Opportunity Index (ROI) to Region 9 of the US Environment Protection Agency's Brownfields Program in San Francisco.  The ROI is a web-based mapping platform used to target positive investments to the people and places that need it the most. Public agencies and policy makers can use the ROI to allocate their funding, personnel and regulatory activity. Advocates can use the ROI to hold businesses and public agencies accountable to investing in under-served communities.  Businesses can use the ROI to meet their investment goals, operate in a socially responsible manner, and meet legal mandates.  The ROI currently covers the 19 counties of the Central Valley with plans to expand statewide. The ROI was developed through a generous gift from Rabobank, N.A.



California Civic Engagement Project's Op-Ed

Mindy Romero, Director of the CRC's California Civic Engagement Project, wrote an op-ed in Sunday's Sacramento Bee.  Mindy discusses how only a fraction of Californians are making decisions for all of us and how reform is difficult when policymakers often don't want to bring new voters to the ballot box.  Learn more about the CCEP here.  For the latest on the CCEP's research, follow Mindy Romero on Twitter @MindySRomero.


 New Research of Interest

New Evidence Links Pollution to Autism, Schizophrenia

A new study published in the journal Environmental Health Perspectives describes how exposure to air pollution early in life produces harmful changes in the brains of mice, including an enlargement of part of the brain that is seen in humans who have autism and schizophrenia. The mice also performed poorly in tests of short-term memory, learning ability, and impulsivity. The new findings are consistent with several recent studies that have shown a link between air pollution and autism in children. Most notably, a 2013 study in JAMA Psychiatry reported that children who lived in areas with high levels of traffic-related air pollution during their first year of life were three times as likely to develop autism. "Our findings add to the growing body of evidence that air pollution may play a role in autism, as well as in other neurodevelopmental disorders," said Deborah Cory-Slechta, Ph.D., professor of Environmental Medicine at the University of Rochester and lead author of the study. To read the full report, click here.


Regionally-Relevant Events

RDLN Institute Farewell Reception

Students and faculty are invited to join the Rural Development Leadership Network as they conclude this year's Institute on campus. The Institute is co-sponsored by the Center for Regional Change.

Date: Friday - June 20

Time: 4:30pm

Place: Gorman Museum - First Floor of Hart Hall

Light refreshments will be served.


Essential Elements' 2014 Public and Private Policy Lecture Series:

Energizing the Valley and Generating Jobs

Essential Elements is a three-part series on the following topics: water and food, energy development and transmission, and trade and logistics. The intent of the series is to organize hands-on partnerships and create action steps for the future of the San Joaquin Valley while coping with climate change.

Date: Thursday - June 12

Time: 8:30am

Place: Harris Ranch Inn - Garden Ballroom, Coalinga, CA

This event is free but requires registration.


Technology, Tools and Techniques to Improve Public Engagement 
Most cities and counties make engaging the public a top priority but there's always room to enhance these programs. Whether you are a beginner or familiar with the process, the Institute for Local Government (ILG) is offering a free webinar to help local agencies use technology to advance public engagement efforts.

Date: Wednesday - June 18

Time: 10-11am

This webinar is free but requires registration.


 Environmental Achievement Award Nominations
2014 Governor's Environmental and Economic Leadership Awards (GEELA)

CA Governor Brown announced that the application period to apply for the State's most prestigious environmental achievement award is now open. The GEELA program recognizes individuals, organizations and businesses that have demonstrated exceptional leadership for voluntary achievements in conserving California's resources, protecting and enhancing the environment, building public-private partnerships, and strengthening the state's economy. GEELA recipients are chosen in 14 different categories, from climate change to environmental justice to waste reduction. For more information and/or a nomination application, click hereDeadline: July 11.


 Employment/Internship Opportunities

Healthy Youth/Healthy Environments Student Stipends

In the upcoming academic year HY/HE will fund 4-6 student stipends of $1,000 for UCD student/faculty projects that address needs identified by UC Cooperative Extension (UCCE) Advisors.  A variety of research projects have been proposed focusing on topics such as teen financial literacy, 4-H youth development, volunteer cultural competency/humility and others.  These projects would build skills ranging from literature reviews to data analysis to policy brief writing.  This stipend is ideal if you are working with a graduate student interested in working on a real-world research project that would inform youth programs.  For a list of proposed projects to choose from and directions to apply, please contact Nancy ErbsteinDeadline: June 30.

About Us: The UC Davis Center for Regional Change

The UC Davis Center for Regional Change (CRC) produces innovative research to create healthy, sustainable, prosperous, and equitable regions in California and beyond.  For media inquiries and other questions, please contact us at (530) 752-3007.  For general questions, please email crcinfo@ucdavis.eduClick here to read more about the CRC.