resilient bay area (2017-present)

Resilient by Design | Bay Area Challenge is a collaborative research and design project that brings together local residents, public officials, and local, national and international experts to develop innovative solutions to the issues brought on by climate change that our region faces today. Alongside the formal process which involves professional Design Teams, Stanford students are participating through a project-based, service-learning course that closely mirrors RBD. SUS has joined forces with the Department of Geophysics, the Bill Lane Center for the American West, and the Stanford Urban Resilience Initiative to organize this course, called D3+SUS (Disasters, Decisions, Development in Sustainable Urban Systems).

Students have formed interdisciplinary teams and are working alongside community members to identify critical vulnerabilities in San Mateo and Santa Clara Counties and nurture participatory solutions that will strengthen the Bay Area's resilience to sea level rise, severe storms, flooding and earthquakes.

30 students participated in the Autumn Research Phase of our project, and presented their work to the public on December 4th, 2017, at the Exploratorium in San Francisco, as well as on December 11th, 2017 at Stanford.

Interactive maps and photos from the project will be posted here, so keep checking back for updates, or subscribe to our newsletter to get updates in your inbox! To reach the teaching team, email


Fall Quarter San Mateo County presentation on 12/8/18, slides and recording.

fall quarter interactive maps

Each of the five student teams in the class dived into unique risks and stakeholder assessments in their regions. They have crafted a subset of their findings into ESRI Story Maps which can be viewed online. Click on the maps below to be redirected to a new window. Note that all maps represent academic work in draft form. 





Sabine Loos is a second year civil engineering graduate student studying urban risk and resilience. Her research focuses on post-disaster damage detection using remote sensing data. She is excited to extend her experience in disaster risk management to the Bay Area.

Karen Barns is an MS candidate in Civil Engineering, focusing on disaster risk and resilience.  Between working as a risk consultant and forensic engineer, she spent a year working with vulnerable communities to prepare for extreme events in the Dominican Republic.



Ben Mullet is a second year PhD student in geophysics. His research focuses on building better models of explosive volcanic eruptions using numerical methods.




Xiaoxue Xiang





Vedang Vadalkar is a first year Master’s student in Civil and Environmental Engineering with a focus on Sustainable Urban Systems. His background is in Structural engineering and is from Mumbai, India.




Shanna Chu





Jeff Pang is a MS candidate in the Structural Engineering program. His previous background is in quantifying structural damage from extreme loading using first-principle computational methods.




Samanthe Belanger is an MBA & MS in Environment and Resources candidate. Her prior work is in strategic planning and organizational development.






Disha Bhaiya is a 1st year Master’s student studying Sustainable Design and Construction with a focus on Sustainable Urban Systems. She is interested in designing carbon neutral and resilient cities.




Youssef Karam




Brandon Patrick Whiteley is a senior in Civil Engineering, with plans to pursue a master’s degree in Sustainable Design and Construction. A Bay Area native, he is interested in developing long-term resiliency plans that best fit local community needs.



Yingqi Wong





Troy Arashiro





Kelly Olson is a second year Master’s student in Civil and Environmental Engineering with a focus on Energy and Urban Systems. Her background is in policy for international development and her post-college time working in the desert of southern Peru inspired her interest in infrastructure development.





Daisy Yu is a first-year master student in Sustainable Design and Construction program under Civil and Environmental Engineering department. With a background of Environmental Science and Resource Management, she is interested in sustainable urban development.


Stephanie Fischer is a senior double majoring in Earth Systems and Music Composition.  Since her experience of Hurricane Sandy New York, she has been interesting in building resilience in vulnerable communities; particularly ones of low-income and of color.


Tyler McIntosh is a master’s student in environmental science, focusing on landscape ecology and human-environmental systems interactions. He has backgrounds in natural history, landscape analysis, and urban design.



Adrian Santiago Tate is a first-year geophysics PhD student doing research on nature-based solutions to coastal hazards. Adrian has a background in coastal engineering and is passionate about researching and developing solutions that build long-term resilience for coastal communities.



Gitanjali Bhattacharjee is a second-year graduate student in the structural engineering program. Her current research focuses on urban risk and resilience, with applications in post-disaster information flows, damage identification, and modelling infrastructure recovery. Her past work includes research in urban heat island quantification. She also has professional experience in engineering consulting, teaching, and non-profit development.

Charu Srivastava is a coterm in Civil and Environmental Engineering, studying sustainable urban systems. Her background is in architectural design and anthropology. Her research work focuses on designing sustainable buildings for human health and wellbeing.



Indraneel (Neel) Kasmalkar is a third year PhD student in the Institute of Computational and Mathematical Engineering, where he does geophysical modeling for glacier basal processes. His background is in pure mathematics.



Veronica Wang




Yahui Zhu is a first year master student in Sustainable Design & Construction program in Civil & Environmental Engineering Department. With a bachelor degree in Environmental Engineering, she is interested in sustainable urban systems.



Yufei Miao





Max Evans is a first year master’s student in Environmental Engineering studying contaminant remediation and its applications to urban renewal. His prior experience is in the social enterprise start-up space including some work in developing countries.


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sunnyvale resilience design studio (2016-17)

In Winter 2017, seven students proposed design solutions for a vulnerable section of Sunnyvale in a studio taught by Bry Sarte and Laszlo Varga of Sherwood Design Engineers. See their work below.