Seminar: Betsy Cody

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Betsy Cody, SESYNC
Time of Event: 
Tuesday, February 6, 2018 - 11:00

National Socio-Environmental Synthesis Center (SESYNC)
1 Park Place, Suite 300
Annapolis, MD 21401

Decision-making Frameworks in Ecosystem Restoration Initiatives

Seminar presented by Betsy Cody, Policy Fellow at SESYNC.

Billions of dollars have been spent restoring large-scale ecosystems in the United States. These initiatives typically involve several federal, state, local, and sometimes tribal stakeholders, and have complex governing bodies that aim to guide restoration activities. Studies analyzing the governance frameworks for large-scale ecosystem restoration largely focus on case studies of restoration initiatives, or more broadly, principles of adaptive management and adaptive governance. The lessons learned from case studies are limited and in many cases specific to the ecosystem studied and thus can be difficult to adapt to emerging restoration initiatives. This study will delve deeper into the process by which these restoration initiatives are implemented,  with a focus on the integration of science in decision-making processes. The primary goal of this project is to provide policymakers, scientists, resource managers, and other interested parties with tangible, actionable information on options for structuring decision-making frameworks for ecosystem restoration.

About the speaker:

Cody is a sabbatical fellow at SESYNC focusing on decision-making structures and processes used in various ecosystem restoration initiatives. Previously she was a specialist in natural resources policy at the Congressional Research Service (CRS), U.S. Library of Congress, where her analytical expertise focused on western water resource policy issues and national water resources policy generally. In her 28 years with CRS she worked on multiple water resources issues (flood policy, drought, watershed and ecosystem management, and Bureau of Reclamation issues), as well as federal land management issues, and international environmental finance issues.  Work at CRS involved analyzing complex legislation, policies, laws, and scientific information and concisely translating key facets for policymakers and others involved in the policy-making process. This work entailed communicating research findings and historical and scientific contexts to policy and decision-makers at all levels -- including testifying before Congress on five occasions. Cody holds an MPA from the University of Washington Evans School of Government, Seattle, WA, and a BS from Lewis & Clark College, Portland, OR. She currently serves on the American Water Resources Association (AWRA) Board of Directors and previously served as the national organization's Finance Chair. She also served two terms as President of the AWRA National Capital Region Section (NCRS). 

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The National Socio-Environmental Synthesis Center, funded through an award to the University of Maryland from the National Science Foundation, is a research center dedicated to accelerating data-driven scientific discovery at the interface of human and ecological systems. Visit us online at and follow us on Twitter @SESYNC.

Event type: 
Event Attendance: 
Open to the Public
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