Made possible with a grant from the National Science Foundation  
Illustration of buildings  

2009-10 Fellows

Program Overview

Mentors and Advisors

Past Participants


Link to Materials (password required)


Tom Birkland,




This is an archive site. The current round of the Enabling Project is being managed by scholars at the University of Colorado at Denver and Texas A&M Galveston. The current site is at



News and Updates from The Fellows and Mentors

Since we met in Broomfield, Colorado, in July of 2009, the fellows and their mentors have been very active in a wide range of activities. Here's an ongoing summary of their accomplishments

Tim Collins -- November 23, 2009
Dr. Collins has already submitted a grant proposal for his research. He also had
I had four sole- or first-author peer-reviewed articles published in 2009 (in Applied Geography, Environmental Management, Geoforum, and Society and Natural Resources). These are all hazards/disasters related. Additionally, in collaboration with physical scientists, Dr. Collins co-authored two research briefs on the 2006 flood disaster in El Paso-Ciudad Juárez (one published in Urban Climate News and one forthcoming in Southwest Hydrology). Two other peer-reviewed articles have been accepted with Antipode (sole-author) and Social Forces (second-author) and are forthcoming (in 2010). A second-author manuscript has been accepted pending minor revisions with Environment and Planning A. Dr. Collins was also involved in preparing and submitting two manuscripts to journals following the Broomfield meeting; one is in revision and the other is in review Finally, Dr. Collins is busy preparing two other hazards/disasters related manuscripts for submission in early 2010.

Scott Miles -- November 24, 2009
Dr. Miles taught two courses in the fall quarter.: hazard mitigation planning and emergency management. In addition, his first NSF grant project started October 1st. The project team has met to create a 4-year workplan and has done a significant amount of work on the first phase of work -- developing a conceptual model of infrastructure interdependence, infrastructure restoration, and local economic performance and recovery.

Fall was also the first quarter of Dr. Miles' directorship of Western Washington University's Resilience Institute. The Institute has established two memorandums of understanding to do research on Washington State disaster planning and policy. One MOU is with Snohomish County, evaluating their public awareness campaign for emergency preparedness. The other MOU is with Washington State Emergency Management Division to conduct a national-scale policy analysis on seismic mitigation policies to identify policy needs for Washington State. The Resilience Institute also recently completed a disaster risk reduction framework for precarious settlement in Guatemala City in cooperation with Oxfam GB. In his new role on the Washington State Seismic Safety Commission, Dr. Miles has been assisting in facilitating Washington State's seismic resilience planning.

Dr. Miles also had a paper on his recovery model, ResilUS, accepted by CAGIS (Journal of Cartography and Geographic Information Systems), and is continuing work on a NOAA-funded project for incorporating ecological capital in the ResilUS model.

Patrick Roberts -- November 28, 2009

Dr. Roberts is completing a book manuscript, Disasters and the Democratic State: How Bureaucrats, Politicians, and the Public Prepare for the Unexpected. He is also working with a colleague to develop a research proposal on the use of short to medium term climate information in emergency management.

Pallab Mozumder -- December 4, 2009

Dr. Mozumder recently published a scholarly paper:

Mozumder, P., R. Helton and R. Berrens 2009. "Provision of a Wildfire Risk Map: Informing Residents in the Wildland Urban Interface", Risk Analysis, 29 (11): 1588-1600.

He also chaired a conference session on Natural Hazards at the Southern Economic Association Conference in San Antonio, TX (November 21-23, 2009) and presented the following paper:

Mozumder, P. “Understanding Household Demand or Hurricane Risk Mitigation Information: Evidence from Survey Responses”, Natural Hazards Session at the Southern Economic Association Meeting, San Antonio, Texas (November 21-23, 2009).

Sara Grineski -- December 10, 2009

Dr. Grineski and her colleagues submitted a proposal to the National Science Foundation. In addition, Dr. Grineski had articles accepted for publication by Environmental Research and Social Forces).

Laura McLay -- December 11, 2009

This past year, Laura McLay has continued to work toward her long-term research goal of establishing a research portfolio in the area of homeland security and emergency management by applying operations research methodologies. In her research, she aims to investigate how to optimally use scarce resources in order to prevent and manage extreme events.

Dr. McLay’s homeland security research continues to examine how to optimally deploy and use current and next-generation screening technologies to prevent nuclear material from entering the United States through ports or airports using discrete optimization methodologies. She is particularly interested in risk-based, multi-layered screening paradigms that examine both the effects of detection and deterrence as well as identifying and comparing performance measures.

Dr. McLay’s research in the domain of emergency response aims to transform emergency medical service systems by considering new performance measures for balancing efficiency and equity. Her research is novel in that it considers how to leverage the response of multiple types of medical resources for responding to prioritized patients in order to save patient lives. Her research provides insight into optimal performance measures for evaluating system performance and shows that it is not always best to send the closest ambulance to 911 calls.

Abbie Liel -- January 22, 2010

Liel, Abbie B., Curt B. Haselton and Gregory G. Deierlein, “Seismic Collapse Safety of Reinforced Concrete Buildings: II. Comparative Assessment of Non-Ductile and Ductile Moment Frames,” Journal of Structural Engineering, Accepted.

Haselton, Curt B., Abbie B. Liel, Gregory G. Deierlein, Brian S. Dean, and Jason H. Chou “Seismic Collapse Safety of Reinforced Concrete Buildings: I. Assessment of Ductile Moment Frames,” Journal of Structural Engineering, Accepted.

Liel, Abbie B. and Kathryn P. Lynch (2009). “Vulnerability of Reinforced Concrete Frame Buildings and Their Occupants in the 2009 L’Aquila, Italy Earthquake,” Natural Hazards Center, Quick Response Report.

Yang Zhang -- January 25, 2010
Dr. Zhang is working on articles on land vacancy modeling following Andrew, environmental hazards and housing choice, and household mitigation adoptions. One was sent submitted to a journal, one is near-ready for submission, and the other two are at the data analysis stage. Dr. Zhang and colleagues have submitted a research proposal for funding. He is also editing a book sponsorred by PKU-Lincoln Institute of Land Policy, titled Post-disaster Redevelopment and Urban Planning: International Experiences and Implications for China. Finally, Dr. Zhang's work was was discussed in a recent issue of Miller McCune Magazine, “After the Aftermath”


2009-2010 Fellows

Timothy W. Collins, Sociology and Anthropology, University of Texas at El Paso

Sara Grineski, Sociology and Anthropology, University of Texas at El Paso

Bandana Kar, Geography and Geology, University of Southern Mississippi

Abbie B. Liel, Civil, Environmental, and Architectural Engineering, University of Colorado, Boulder

Peter M. Madsen, Organizational Leadership and Strategy, Marriott School of Management, Brigham Young University

William L. McGill, Information Sciences and Technology, Pennsylvania State University

Laura McLay, Statistical Sciences and Operations Research, Virginia Commonwealth University

Cindy L. Menches, Civil, Architectural, and Environmental Engineering, University of Texas at Austin

Scott B. Miles, Environmental Studies, Western Washington University

Pallab Mozumder, Earth and Environment, Florida International University

Earthea Nance, Planning and Urban Studies, University of New Orleans

Terri R. Norton, Construction Engineering, University of Nebraska-Lincoln

Patrick S. Roberts, Center for Public Administration and Policy, School of Public and International Affairs, Virginia Tech

Aric Shafran, Economics, California Polytechnic State University

Patric R. Spence, Communications, Western Michigan University

Yang Zhang, Urban Affairs and Planning, Virginia Tech

Jun Zhuang, Industrial and Systems Engineering, University at Buffalo, The State University of New York





      This project is funded by the National Science Foundation (CMMI- 0758484). Any claims made in this site are the findings and opinions of the project participants, not the National Science Foundation or the project's participating institutions.