Promoting Science in Action

At the Jones Center, we are advancing the ways science can be used to create more resilient communities. Science by itself cannot improve society – its products need to be used in making better decisions. In recent years, this has taken many forms to reach various, targeted audiences.

“Seven Steps to Community Resilience”

In 2018 and 2019, with funding from Southern California Edison, The Jones Center developed the materials for the “7 Steps to Community Resilience,” a program aimed at community organizations, including nonprofits and faith-based organizations. Most resilience efforts are targeted at individuals, but research has shown that one of the most  important factors is a community’s resilience is its social capital – or the degree to which its members are connected with each other.

In partnership with the Mexican Consulate, LA County Fire Department, and the City of Huntington Park, we are piloting an implementation of this program with a group of churches and non-profits. In 2020, we began working with a cohort of community and faith-based organizations in Huntington Park to help them be better prepared for future natural disasters so that they can be nuclei for recovery in the broader community. Research shows that a key element in recovery after disasters is the degree of social capital within the community. People and communities with more connections between people have more resources to rebuild their lives and more reasons to stay in the damaged community. Second, the organizations themselves can be the nuclei of recovery, that will encourage people to stay in the community.

California Seismic Risk Communication Initiative

The Jones Center partnered with the California Earthquake Authority (CEA) to conduct “California Seismic Risk Communication Initiative.” The purpose of this program is to empower those delivering messages around earthquake risk and recovery to use the best tools and approaches to instigate actions by decision-makers in households and communities. This initiative included working to develop and refine targeted messages, coordinating with media, and developing materials to advance the effort.

Media and Public Engagement

Part of the work of The Jones Center is creating and responding to media opportunities, both traditional and online. Dr. Jones engages with over 140,000 Twitter followers, sharing the strategically crafted Center posts with her followers to help them understand the science of disasters and surrounding data and facts. In addition to her other speaking engagements, Dr. Jones speaks with audiences on behalf of The Jones Center to further its objectives. Building on decades of media interviews, Dr. Jones and Center staff coordinate her response to disaster events, including earthquakes, tsunamis, pandemics, and other disasters.

Selected highlights from the past year include: