2022-2023 Grants

Congratulations to awarded working groups!

Grants for Working Groups on Resilience Research for Development Challenges

This project proposes an exploratory study in entrepreneurial resilience applied for the first time, to our knowledge, to media development in a country suffering from an ongoing civil conflict and dire humanitarian crisis. We conceptualize entrepreneurial resilience in three ways:

  1. a set of capabilities, or the ability to withstand precarity, adversity and hardship
  2. a process, or the ways in which entrepreneurs adapt to adversity
  3. a resilient outcome, or the ability to not experience any adverse effects of a stressful event

Because ‘entrepreneurial resilience’ applied to independent media development is a new concept, the group will initially meet several times to determine the appropriate measures, sample and creation of the qualitative questionnaire for semi-structured interviews. We plan to launch the study in fall 2022 and run it through March 2023. Our goal is to complete an academic paper by May 2023 for conference and academic journal submissions.

  • Jeannine E. Relly (Lead), Professor and Director of Global Initiatives, University of Arizona School of Journalism and School of Government and Public Policy
  • Monica Chadha (Lead), Associate Professor and Affiliated Faculty, University of Arizona School of Journalism, Center for Border & Global Journalism
  • Maha Nassar, Associate Professor and Affiliated Faculty, University of Arizona School of Middle East and North African Studies, Center for Middle Eastern Studies
  • Safa Ajlan, Professor, University of Aden, Yemen, Department of Media & Communication Science

Update: Read the abstract of "Resilience Informatics for Public Health", a paper by this working group that was awarded 3rd Best Paper our of over 600 submissions at the prestigious MedInfo2023 conference. Full paper to be included in upcoming book published by IOSPress. 


Proposal: We propose Resilience Informatics (RI) as a discipline within Resilience research. We define RI as informatics systems and technologies designed to support and promote the ability of individuals, organizations, and populations to successfully cope with natural and man-made stressors. We propose a Working group on Resilience Informatics (WGRI) that will form the nucleus for a Center for Resilience Informatics at the University of Arizona, and establish the University of Arizona as a leader in Resilience Informatics.

  • Sriram Iyengar (Lead), Associate Professor, Director Clinical Outcomes Research Analytics, University of Arizona College of Medicine Phoenix 
  • Nirav Merchant, Director, University of Arizona Data Science Institute 
  • Stephen Rains, Professor, University of Arizona Department of Communication 
  • Mona Arora, Assistant Research Professor, University of Arizona Mel and Enid Zuckerman College of Public Health 
  • Kacey Ernst, Professor, University of Arizona Mel and Enid Zuckerman College of Public Health 

This working group builds a diverse network of researchers across the University of Arizona with additional representation from NASA, international humanitarians, and community-based organizations to address flood recovery, adaptation and resilience. We aim to identify conceptual linkages between flood recovery and adaptation and assess how satellite image observation can be used to monitor recovery, adaptation and resilience across spatial scales. The three goals of the working group are:

  1. Build relationships via a side meeting at the Global Flood Partnership Annual Meeting, and a series of three workshops and a symposium held at UA.
  2. Publish a group synthesis paper based on literature review and workshop conversations on how satellites can measure flood recovery and adaptation.
  3. Leverage the network and relationships formed to apply for a variety of NSF and NASA funding opportunities to sustain transdisciplinary collaboration of innovative applications to monitor flood recovery, adaptation and resilience.
  • Hannah Friedrich (Lead), PhD Student, University of Arizona School of Geography, Development, and Environment
  • Beth Tellman (Lead), Assistant Professor, University of Arizona School of Geography, Development, and Environment
  • Adriana Zuniga-Teran (Lead), Assistant Professor, University of Arizona School of Geography, Development, and Environment
  • Laura Bakkensen, Associate Professor, University of Arizona School of Government and Public Policy
  • Eleonora Demaria, Hydrologist, Pima County Regional Flood Control District
  • Neha Gupta, Program Coordinator, University of Arizona AIRES University Climate Change Coalition
  • Caitlyn Hall, Assistant Professor of Practice, University of Arizona W.A. Franke Honors College
  • Ben McMahan, Assistant Professor of Anthropology, Assistant Research Professor, University of Arizona CLIMAS/BARA
  • Alexander Saunders, PhD Student, University of Arizona School of Geography, Development, and Environment
  • Jonathan Sullivan, Post-doctoral Research Scientist, University of Arizona School of Geography, Development, and Environment
  • Shanna McClain, Disasters Program Manager, NASA Earth Science Applied Sciences Program


Amount: Awards of up to $15,000 will be granted to awarded interdisciplinary working groups composed of a maximum of 10 people.

Grant announcement date: March 21, 2022

Proposal submission due date: April 29, 2022, 5:00 pm Mountain Standard Time

Notification of acceptance: May 11, 2022

Award period: May 15, 2022 - May 30, 2023


The concept of resilience has inspired approaches for meeting sustainable development goals that reduce adverse outcomes created by poverty, conflict, economic shocks, and global environmental change. Resilience helps define strategies that builds capacities to cope, adapt, and transform in the face of shocks and stresses at different scales (e.g., individual, household, community, institutional, and/or systems levels). This grant opportunity facilitates the mission of the Arizona Institute for Resilient Environments and Societies (AIRES) to support interdisciplinary groups to develop practical, applied solutions that further resilience in our natural and human communities.

The goals of the grant opportunity are to (1) develop innovative ideas on resilience from diverse fields of inquiry with applications to international development, and (2) support new, burgeoning, or existing collaborative research efforts that seek to engage in opportunities related to global resilience research and international development. These working groups can focus on a diverse set of topics, such as on food systems, indigenous knowledges, coupled social-ecological systems, climate change adaptation, conflict mitigation, public health surveillance, or other topics of intersecting disciplines. The grant program especially seeks to support working groups that will proceed to build upon their activities beyond the grant funding period.


Over the course of the award period (May 2022-May 2023), working groups will pursue activities that develop innovative ideas on resilience from diverse fields of inquiry with applications to international development. Examples of activities could include, but are not limited to, the development of a peer-reviewed paper; hosting a workshop and producing a proceedings report; public awareness products, such as an op-ed; providing or attending trainings; or other outreach activities that disseminates research outcomes for non-academic audiences.

Working groups may also choose to focus their energies on developing proposals for additional funding or gathering preliminary data in new and innovative ways. The proposal should specify the intended outcome.  Any activities proposed by the working groups should ultimately seek to advance the topics on resilience and international development.

In addition to the proposed activities, a member of each awarded working group will be required to participate in a public webinar presentation hosted by AIRES – International Programs in the spring of 2023 to present their work to University of Arizona audiences and additional partners working on resilience and international development.

Working Group Composition

Team leaders and members may include University of Arizona faculty and/or continuing-status academic professionals from any discipline. Postdoctoral research associates and students can also be team members. Working groups should consist of approximately four people, with no more than 10 people per working group. Proposal working groups may also include collaborators from other academic institutions and/or practitioner communities. We encourage working groups that are made up of two or more disciplines and/or areas of expertise within a discipline, as well as a mix of early- and mid- to late-career individuals.

Proposal Format

Please submit the following information by April 29.

Grant proposals should be single-spaced, in 11-point Arial font with 1-inch margins and submitted as a pdf file.

  1. Title page with the following information:

    • Proposed working group that includes the names, titles, and affiliations of all working group members. The lead and any additional co-leads of the working group should be identified.
    • Proposal summary (150 words)
  2. A maximum 2-page description of the proposed working group activities that includes the following: 
    • How the topics taken up by the working group fit into resilience and international development
    • The desired outcomes of the proposed activities
    • How the outcomes of this proposals will be achieved
    • A case for the team composition, including how each team member will contribute to the working group
    • Longer terms objectives of the working group, if any
  3. Short CV of the working group lead(s) (two pages maximum for each)

Grant proposals must also include a high-level budget with budget justification regarding how the funding will be used. The proposal may support the following activities:

  • Graduate student support
  • Undergraduate student support
  • Supplemental compensation
  • Publication fees for academic peer-reviewed journals
  • Travel & accommodation costs associated with international field work or conferences
  • Travel & accommodation costs associated with hosting international collaborators at the University of Arizona
  • Logistics costs to host a meeting at the University of Arizona 

Proposal Evaluation

Proposals will be evaluated by a 5–7-person review committee consisting of select members of the Arizona Initiative for Resilience and International Development (AIRID), as well as scholars and practitioners working on resilience and international development. The proposals will be reviewed with respect to the following criteria:

  • A clear link of research ideas and associated working group activities to address pressing needs and issues in international development
  • Innovation and novelty of ideas to resilience and applied international development.
  • Feasibility of the proposed working group activities to produce meaningful outcomes within the time frame of the grant period
  • Overall merit and qualifications of the working group team, taking into consideration a diversity of backgrounds and range of expertise and experiences of working group members
  • A vision for how this group may persist beyond a year

Submission Process

 Team leaders should submit application materials by email in one PDF file to Dr. Corrie Hannah <corrieh@email.arizona.edu> and Dr. Zack Guido <zguido@arizona.edu>.