Type of Work

Research Paper

Publication Date



Cities face a unique challenge in dealing with climate change due to an increased risk of flooding and the urban heat island effect. Natural climate solutions and the use of green infrastructure techniques provide an opportunity to meet these challenges. My paper examines how cities are integrating climate resilience principles into existing institutional structures for stormwater management. I analyze barriers to the adoption of green infrastructure and how climate adaptation can facilitate meaningful community engagement and climate justice through a comparative policy analysis of two case studies: Copenhagen, Denmark and Boston, Massachusetts, USA. I interviewed 14 professionals from different backgrounds to get a holistic perspective on stormwater management and climate adaptation in each city. These interviews provided insight into the motivation behind green infrastructure adoption and how that influences the support for these techniques. The main challenge identified with implementing projects was the horizontal collaboration between city entities. Representatives from both cities expressed the importance of engaging with communities in designing projects to maximize the co-benefits of green infrastructure. However, cities must also consider the prioritization of projects and green gentrification. As a result, urban planning for climate resiliency will require collaboration across city entities and within the community. Responding to climate change is a dynamic process that challenges the static tendency of urban planning and policymaking. With limited time to act, lessons from cities that have undertaken these steps are key to informing the critical climate action of other cities.

Hamilton Areas of Study

Environmental Studies

Hamilton Sponsoring Organization

Levitt Public Affairs Center

Hamilton Scholarship Series

Levitt Summer Research Fellowship

Hamilton Faculty Advisor

Aaron Strong