Dr. Kristina Peterson

Dr.-Kristina-Peterson head shot


Co-Founder of the Lowlander Center

Mitigation, Community Engagement & the Resettlement

Friday, September 10 @ 11:15 am – 12:30

1.5 HSW


Dr. Shirley Laska, along with three guests from UNO, and the mitigation center, Center for Hazards Assessment, Response & Technology (UNO-CHART), will begin by showing the importance of architecture in the work that the center accomplished following Katrina, through its approach to sustainability and resilience efforts and strategies. UNO-CHART is an applied social science hazards research center at the University of New Orleans that collaborates with Louisiana communities including the City of New Orleans and its surrounding parishes to assist in the development of best practices for reducing risks and help in implementing these practices to achieve comprehensive community resilience.


Kristina Peterson is an applied social scientist who studies scientist/community interaction including how to support and prepare both scientists and community members for working together and how that work transforms both parties. She is a co-founder of the Lowlander Center, a nonprofit organization that helps create solutions through education, research, and advocacy, beginning at the community level, for Lowland people and places in the bayous of Louisiana. Peterson was a founding board member of the National Hazards Mitigation Association and the Gender and Disaster Network.

Peterson has created and helped create innovative just housing and land use programs especially in post disaster situations.  She was an early innovator on reuse of building materials and the deconstruction of buildings as a resource for affordable housing.

Peterson is currently a visiting lecturer in the planning department  at the University of New Orleans , specializing in environmental and hazards planning, and was formerly the Senior Research Assistant at the Center for Hazards Assessment, Response and Technology (CHART-UNO)

She is an Advisory Board member of the Thriving Earth Exchange of the Geophysical Union and  is a fellow in the Society of Applied Anthropology.  Recent awards include the “Distinguished Service to Rural Communities” from the Rural Sociology Association in 2014,for her years of advocacy and justice work in rural communities, and from the PCUSA-Earth Care, the William Gibson Environmental Award.  She was named by her colleagues, the Mother Jones of Disaster Recovery.

Her most recent notable work has been to develop a team of topic experts to work with the Tribal experts of Isle de Jean Charles to create one of the winning proposals in the National Rockefeller HUD NDRC competition- $52,000,000 for a ‘proof of concept’ culturally appropriate, sustainable resilient coastal resettlement community.   www.coastalresettlement.org

She publishes on community adaptation to disasters, the crisis in climate and the BP oil disaster as well as the use of Traditional Knowledges in decision making and planning.   Other publications include appropriate entrée and engagement practices, as well as participatory action methods with communities.