Community Engagement

Since 1996, the Community Engagement Core (CEC) has served as a vital component in promoting communication between the public and Center scientists. The CEC shares research findings with the public and functions as a bridge to inform researchers about community concerns. The program draws directly upon research addressing key concerns in Southern California: traffic, air pollution and emissions from industrial facilities and southern California ports and freight transport operations. To address community concerns about these issues, the CEC has built strong community-academic partnerships to address health impacts and environmental health disparities. Click here to see a map of the CEC’s key environmental justice partnership communities in our region.

The CEC provides information to community organizations, public health professionals, and policymakers, empowering these stakeholders to take action to protect environmental health. Key strategies include sharing the latest research findings through print and online social media, giving presentations at local and national public health meetings, sponsoring workshops and conferences for the community to hear from scientists and at which our Center members can hear community concerns, and training community volunteers and student groups in community-based research. The CEC also provides written comments on significant new infrastructure projects (such as freeway expansions) to ensure that policymakers integrate public health concerns in their decision-making.

The CEC benefits from many advisors, including an External Advisory Committee, Environmental Justice advisors, and a Stakeholder Advisory Board with representatives from community-based, academic, public health, legal, children’s health, urban planning and communications backgrounds.

CEC Director: Jill Johnston
CEC Staff: Wendy Gutschow and Zully Juarez
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