ABOUT IRIS

IRIS advances the integration of natural and conventional infrastructure systems to strengthen society’s long term resilience to flooding, sea level rise, drought and other disruptions. Through collaborative partnerships, interdisciplinary expertise and research innovations, we empower communities and businesses to discover wise infrastructure solutions that deliver a broad array of social, economic and environmental benefits.

Projects

With an interdisciplinary team that spans over ten University of Georgia Schools and colleges, IRIS projects are as diverse as the people who conduct them. Examples of our current projects are below:

University of Georgia IRIS researcher Dr. Jeb Byers, Meigs Distinguished Teaching Professor of Ecology in the Odum School of Ecology, hopes to harness the ecological genius of species that engineer their ecosystems by studying how marine organisms change their habitats.

 

Institute for Resilient Infrastructure Systems researcher Dr. Matthew V. Bilskie, assistant professor in the College of Engineering, is working to understand how natural- and nature-based infrastructure can mitigate flooding and reduce wave energy in coastal communities.

Dr. Rod Lammers is working  alongside Wright Water Engineers, an engineering firm in Denver, and other UGA researchers to create methods for quantifying benefits that stream restoration activities may provide to regions seeking to improve water quality. These methods are applicable to stream restoration projects everywhere, but are receiving the most attention in parts of the country with significant water quality challenges.

As climate change causes rising temperatures and changes in rainfall across the planet, IRIS researcher Dr. Don Nelson is shedding light on the differing values of populations in Northeastern Brazil to inform future water management decisions. 

IRIS and partners are streamlining the consultation process involving imperiled aquatic species potentially affected by GDOT construction projects that affect freshwater ecosystems. A streamlined consultation process will ensure that species receive protections that are most important to their life stage and sensitivities.

News

Dr. Brian Bledsoe joins National Academies of Sciences Panel on resilience

IRIS director Dr. Brian Bledsoe recently joined the National Academies of Sciences, Medicine and Engineering, Enhancing Community Resilience (EnCoRe) Initiative Expert Panel Series. This panel series was developed by the Gulf Research Program, with the goal of better understanding the challenges and critical issues that may threaten the health and safety of communities in the …

IRIS and AT&T Team Up to Identify How Flood Risks Impact Low-Income Communities

Using climate data provided by AT&T via the U.S. Department of Energy’s Argonne National Laboratory, the Institute for Resilient Infrastructure Systems examined how flooding in Athens, Georgia, impacts communities differently. The study found that flooding impacts low-income and minority communities to a much more severe extent than other areas of the town–Black, Hispanic and low-income …

Work With Us

The University of Georgia School of Engineering offers programs with relevant specialties for both Master’s and Ph.D. students interested in the Institute for Resilient Infrastructure Systems. Learn more!

IRIS brings researchers from departments across the University of Georgia campus into conversation with each other, and provides support in the form of workshops, communications, and opportunities for collaboration. With our interdisciplinary perspective, we are able to tackle tough problems from all angles. To learn more about our team of affiliates, visit this page.

IRIS works closely with communities, municipalities and industry partners to support them in creating and implementing pragmatic resilience solutions backed up by the best available science, technology and communications tools. We help organizations prepare to be stronger when things go wrong, while enhancing their reputation, stakeholder relationships, and cost effectiveness.