Welcome to the Thriving Earth Exchange’s (TEX) blog space. The purpose of the blog is to inspire thinking, open-participation and discussion on particular topics or themes. We encourage you to leave comments on any blog post by clicking through to each post and sharing your thoughts at the bottom.


Accomplishments and Goals

  What we’ve accomplished: TEX met with TNH2H leaders and community members several times to understand local priorities and explore how environmental factors contributed to community health and well-being. TNH2H leaders led a workshop at the AGU fall meeting in 2013, in which they worked with scientists to brainstorm how they might address concerns about […]

Community Science Improves Usability of Coastal Erosion Assessment in Arctic Alaska

By:  Clayton Elder In this series, TEX is featuring a number of blogs from student volunteers who assisted at AGU’s Fall Meeting in December 2015. Each volunteer was asked to find community science projects in either oral or poster sessions and describe how the project aligns with the TEX mission and values.  Life at the top […]

Connecting Climate Science to City Planning

By Andrew Gase In the coming weeks, TEX will feature a series of blogs from student volunteers who assisted at AGU’s Fall Meeting in December 2015. Each volunteer was asked to find community science projects in either oral or poster sessions and describe how the project aligns with the TEX mission and values.  Among science circles […]

Dr. Rice speaks to Eugene’s City Council

  Current events Eugene’s climate recovery ordinance has received overwhelming support from a number of sources. The City Council has already met several times to discuss the details of this ordinance, and these meetings can be viewed online here. On Monday, February 22nd at 5:30PST, Eugene’s City Council will meet once more. For those curious […]

Boston, MA

The Challenge The Metro Boston region, an area where civic leaders have been at the forefront of climate resilience initiatives in recent years, is seeking a comprehensive flood vulnerability assessment of its food distribution networks north of Boston. Much of the  metro region’s food supply passes through two major distribution centers in the cities of Everett […]

Denver, Colorado

Community Project Summary TEX’s role Local Impact Broader Impact Denver, CO Testing low-cost approach to measuring PCE while helping one Denver neighborhood protect itself from pollutants that enter homes though basements (e.g. PCE and Radon) Helped community scope project, and found scientific partner; connected to crowd-funding opportunity 20 Residents whose home is tested (20,000 neighborhood […]

Mapping Extreme Heat

  TEX and ICLEI partner city, Washington, D.C., are interested in understanding how extreme heat might be mitigated as part of the city’s first climate adaptation plan. The city began mapping heat vulnerability with a team of climate scientists. The timing of the collaboration with TEX is ideal due to current drafting of the adaptation […]

Washington, District of Columbia

Photo Courtesy of: Kate Johnson, District Department of the Environment The Challenge As the capital of the United States, the District of Columbia grapples with human-induced and natural threats ranging from counter-terrorism to hurricanes. The U.S. Global Change Research Program reports that average temperatures are already increasing in the District, along with the frequency of […]

Animas River, Colorado

Photo Courtesy of: Riverhugger The Challenge On August 12, 2015, the US experienced one of its worst hardrock-mining disasters when 3 million gallons of toxic mining waste spilled into the Animas River in Colorado. The spill has spread from Colorado into New Mexico and now into Utah — affecting over 100 river miles. Cities all […]

Horn of Africa

        Image Courtesy of: Horn of Africa Regional Environmental Centre and Network About the Center The Horn of Africa Regional Environmental Center and Network focuses on environmental concerns and sustainable development options within the Horn of Africa. It facilitates, strengthens and advocates for initiatives related to land use planning, integrated water resources management, ecosystem management, […]

Sri Lanka

Photo Courtesy of: Maia Fitzstevens The Challenge The Thriving Earth Exchange (TEX), in partnership with the Sarvodaya Shramadana Sangamaya Movement (Sarvodaya) of Sri Lanka, is looking for Sri Lankan and international scientists to understand the epidemic of CKDnt in Sri Lanka through community interviews, literature review and geochemical laboratory research.   Chronic kidney disease of non-traditional […]

Columbia, MO

Photo Courtesy of: Wikimedia Commons The Challenge The Columbia Water and Light Department, which serves nearly 120,000 residents in Central Missouri, uses a lime softening technique as part of its drinking water treatment. The lime residuals from this process are then transported via truck to farms for agricultural application. As time has passed, there is […]

What can solutions-oriented science learn from the Supreme Court?

  The Supreme Court does not “do” theory: to have a case heard by the court you need to demonstrate you have been injured by the application of a law, as in the case when Massachusetts sued the Environment Protection Agency for failing to regulate CO2.  Massachusettes had the case heard by arguing increased CO2 was leading to […]

Why is the American Geophysical Union (AGU) powering TEX? And what does ‘powering’ mean?

  The American Geophysical Union (AGU) is an international professional society of over 61,000 Earth and space scientists who study everything from the deep interior of the Earth to the surface of the sun – and even the solid, liquid, and gas parts of other planets.   (If you’ve read carefully, you’ve just realized that AGU […]

Tales of Community Science by Parvathy Prem

  What does community science mean to you? In the Pamir Mountains of Central Asia, community science is adapting traditional ecological calendars to a changing climate. In five Colorado neighborhoods, community science is initiating a data-based conversation on declining air quality. These are a couple of the projects currently supported by the Thriving Earth Exchange […]

How participatory is enough?

    Two years ago, after a seminar on community-based participatory research, a colleague raised her hand. She was troubled, because she felt like whenever she tried to introduce small participatory elements into her research, she was told it wasn’t enough. It reminded me of high school, where every time I liked a band, I […]

Why are we so into community science?

  We think community science is cool for a lot of reasons. Here are the 10 things we love about #commsci: Science is more usable when it co-designed, from the ground up, to address a community priority. More usable science means more impact, more support for science, and more people interested in doing science. Community science is […]

Visionary Talk Interviews Chris McEntee

  The American Geophysical Union (AGU) is an international professional society of over 61,000 Earth and space scientists who study everything from the deep interior of the Earth to the surface of the sun – and even the solid, liquid, and gas parts of other planets. Seth Kahan, of Visionary Talk, interviews Chris McEntee, Executive […]

What do starfish have to do with TEX?

  Ori Brafman’s book, “The Starfish and Spider” contrasts centralized and decentralized organizations. As a simple way to show the difference, Brafman considers Encyclopedia Britannica, a centralized, spider organization, where editors invite experts to contribute carefully curated content. Wikipedia, in contrast, is a decentralized starfish organization that leverages collective effort and intelligence. TEX is more […]

Why this blog?

  While we have a good idea of what TEX is, we are doing a lot of experimenting to figure out how to get there. This means our thinking about TEX and what TEX looks like will change. One reason for having this blog, then, is to provide some explanation for why things may have […]

What are the TEX tools?

  We have identified four steps to successful community science projects, and collected tools and resources to support each of these steps. The steps are: Match: Before any community science can happen, communities and scientists need to be around the same table, as equals. We have partners, like Rockefellers 100 Resilient Cities initiative and ICLEI, […]

Community Challenges

Thank you for showing an interest in our community challenges!   As part of our partnership with Rockefeller’s 100 Resilient Cities, each community is seeking a scientist to work with on identified areas of concern related to climate change, natural hazards and/or natural resources. Please complete the brief form below. We will then contact you […]

Theory and Background

 Learn some of the theoretical foundations behind ‘Community Science’   Models of Community Science – Lessons from the Field  Learn more on community science as an advancement to ‘citizen science’. The short paper includes key models and approaches from the field.

How to Start a Discussion

We have selected some tools that will help you work with communities to design projects     Human Centered Design Toolkit  Human-Centered Design is the concept of working with the people that solutions are often designed for by listening to community concerns and understanding how best to apply solutions together.       Resilientville Resilientville […]

What is TEX?

  The Thriving Earth Exchange (TEX) will be this: It will be 100s or 1000s of community projects that use Earth and space science to make life better for people and the planet. To us, a better life means one that is sustainable, equitable, resilient, and productive – one that helps all people live well […]

Pine Ridge Reservation: Solving Critical Water Issues

The population of the Pine Ridge Reservation in South Dakota possesses one the highest cancer clusters among Native Americans and the United States at large. Metal contamination from well water is suspected to be a major contributor. This project will develop an understanding of the broader scale hydrology, aquifer chemistry, and geology across 2 burrows […]

Pamir Mountains Challenge – Hosted by ClimateCoLab


Let us help you find a project! Register with the Thriving Earth Exchange and contribute to community science in a meaningful way!      

Completed: How Can We Make Our Communities More Resilient?


Completed: Do you Have Long Term Goals for Energy Efficiency?


A Chapter on Community Science

 Written by the Raj Pandya, the Thriving Earth Exchange Program Director, this chapter out of Future Earth: Advancing Civic  Understanding of the Anthropocene takes a closer look at what community science really is all about.  ch6

Research for Organizing Toolkit

A new way to look at conducting community science! Research For Organizing

Community Toolkit

This is a comprehensive collection of toolkits and webpages with content related to community science, partnership building and collaborative research. From learning how to build relationships within a community to developing strategies and plans for your research, this website is like an encyclopedia for all things community science. Community Toolkit

Participatory Action Research

William Foote Whyte (editor)[icon image=”book” align=”right”] Sage Publications Inc., 1991 This book aims to make a case for participatory action research (PAR) as a powerful strategy to advance both science and practice. PAR involves practitioners in the research process from the initial design of the project through data gathering and analysis to final conclusions and […]

Disaster Mitigation: A Community Based Approach

Disaster Mitigation: A Community Based Approach (PDF, 100 pages) Andrew Maskrey[icon image=”book” align=”right”]

The Power of Community Science

Community science is the collaboration of researchers and community members to propose solutions to problems usually pertaining to public health. The relationship between these two parties can be difficult to build within the time limits of each research project. In order for researchers to gain the type of access they need into the community there […]

Giving Local Experts New Tools

Dr. Dan Wildcat (of Haskell University) and Bull Bennett (of Kiksapa consulting) have been building their relationship with tribal colleges for years. Having worked on environmental issues for the past 20 years Dan Wildcat has built a large network of scientists, potential mentors and students. Bull Bennett has been a mentor for years to both […]

Community Science Role Models

Who are your role models? Why? Take a second to think of what makes a good role model in the scientific community. The first things I think of are patience and a commitment to learning, two traits that Christine Wiedinmyer exhibits. When I called Christine to ask her about her research, she was confused as […]

Weather Forecasting in India and Bangladesh

How you say ‘1.5 inches’ can save a life. It can save packages of seeds and herds of cattle. The language used to deliver a forecast is important. The timing of when these forecasts are given is equally important for people that are affected by extreme weather. In places like Bangladesh and India, the communities […]

Completed: How Many Ways Can Climate Science Data be Used?


Completed: Looking for Soil Scientists


Vote for your favorite Agriculture Innovation project

Read over the entries that have been submitted here, and vote for your favorite solution (requires a Facebook account). Some examples include converting manure to a bio-adhesive that can be used in construction, mobile apps to track food expiration dates and prevent food waste, and freezing food that would otherwise spoil so it can be […]

Opportunity: Presidential Innovation Fellows (PIFs)

A great opportunity to work on innovative partnerships with the federal government. The Presidential Innovation Fellows program creates teams of fellows and civil servants to work on big issues. The three focus areas right now are: Making Digital the Default: Building a 21st Century Veterans Experience Data Innovation: Unleashing the Power of Data Resources to Improve Americans’ […]

Help NASA Hunt for Asteroids

Have you heard? You can join in the hunt for asteroids with NASA. And you might even win $35,000. Check out the opportunity here.

Doing Good with Science

The Thriving Earth Exchange is dedicated to “Doing good with science”. We are working to develop new and innovative avenues for communities (a community is any group that might be able to use science to help advance their other priorities) and Earth and space scientists to combine their knowledge to accomplish great things. And we […]

Taking Neighborhood Health to Heart


Thriving Earth Exchange LIVE! Survey

Did you get a chance to join us for our Thriving Earth Exchange LIVE! event at the American Geophysical Union? We’d love your feedback on the event and your thoughts about the Thriving Earth Exchange. Fill out a quick survey to let us know what you thought of the event. And if you’d like to […]

The Exchange @ Fall Meeting 2013

Raj and Julia, our dedicated Exchange team members, and some of our amazing Advisory Board members will be in San Francisco for the American Geophysical Union’s annual Fall Meeting, 9-13 December 2013. We’ll be mingling, meeting up with attendees, going to mixers and poster sessions, and hosting a few of our own events. Say hi and ask […]

Thriving Earth Exchange In the News

Stay up to date on Thriving Earth Exchange updates! Let us tell you what we’ve been up to recently. Eos article We are officially published in AGU’s weekly newspaper Eos. Read our article “AGU’s Thriving Earth Exchange: Five Reasons to Join In” to find an explanation of the Thriving Earth Exchange process and why we think it will […]

White Earth Nation: Water Quality