Carrie Makarewicz and Jeremy Németh present at the 2022 Future Fest.

Community Collaboration and Research Center Receives Grand Challenge Funding

October 21, 2022

One of the University of Colorado Denver’s strategic goals is to become internationally known for research and creative work. The Grand Challenge Award is an initiative to fund the work of thought leaders and experts from around the university to pursue future-focused research and initiatives for addressing social issues.

Each group of awardees presented a three-minute “Ted Talk”-style summary of their plans for their Grand Challenge funding at the 2022 Future Fest on October 13. Professor of Urban and Regional Planning and Director of the PhD in Geography, Planning, and Design Jeremy Németh and Associate Professor and Urban and Regional Planning Department Chair, Carrie Makarewicz introduced their proposal for the Design and Implementation of a Community Collaboration and Research Center (CCRC). 

The CCRC will address climate change and health equity through long-term research using community-based participatory research methods and provide “drop-in” research assistance through store-front locations on campus and in communities.

The team is led by four principal investigators (PIs) including Németh and Makarewicz, Associate Professor of Geography and Environmental Science Gregory Simon, and Clinical Professor of Anthropology Jean Scandlyn. Additionally, 20 faculty members from across 10 departments have joined forces to bring the CCRC to life. The team will add community and civic leaders to the center governing structure. 

This hybrid, interdisciplinary, and collaborative center that recognizes climate change impacts our communities on varying levels and in multiple ways. Solutions require long-term partnerships with communities and experts from different disciplines to collaborate to solve problems that cannot otherwise be solved in discipline-specific silos or without meaningful community engagement.

Learn more about the Community Collaboration and Research Center and the other Grand Challenge Awardees.