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November 27, 2023

RAC projects learning together, building momentum

A table with pieces of paper that have images and words on them, strewn around.

Co-creation sessions with Duwamish Valley community members and stakeholders that focused on identifying priorities, values, and aspirations for community open space in their neighborhoods. (Credit: Maron Bernardino) After their launch in spring of this year, the two inaugural projects of the Research to Action Collaboratory have been making progress in key ways. Supported by Urban@UW,…

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November 7, 2023

Spark Grants Complete Collaborative Research on Artificial Turf, Food Bank Home Delivery, and Urban Streetwear

a side by side photo of the front and back of a jacket with patches and other decor.

An electronic denim jacket, an artistic collaboration to depict Black residents’ urban experiences. (credit: Bret Halperin) Over the past year, three teams of researchers from the University of Washington tackled a host of urban challenges in our region with the support of Urban@UW’s Spark Grants. In September 2022,  Urban@UW awarded $20,000 to each team in…

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September 15, 2023

Environmental Protection Agency Delays New Ozone Pollution Standards Until After the 2024 Election

City skyline with smog-filled skies

The Environmental Protection Agency is delaying plans to tighten air quality standards for ground-level ozone — better known as smog — despite a recommendation by a scientific advisory panel to lower air pollution limits to protect public health. The decision by EPA Administrator Michael Regan means that one of the agency’s most important air quality…

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September 13, 2023

Building Resilience in Children at the Start of the New School Year

Smiling school-age children gathered in circle.

As the academic year kicks off, parents and guardians across Seattle fill out last-minute paperwork, pack backpacks and lunch sacks, and remind countless children to set out their clothes the night before. While adults nudge children and teenagers to grab a sweater on their way out the door, many can forget to actively check in…

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September 8, 2023

Armed with Traffic Cones, Protestors Are Immobilizing Driverless Cars

Image of small white and red vehicle with camera and navigational equipment on roof driving through street in San Francisco

All it takes to render the technology-packed self-driving car inoperable is a traffic cone. If all goes according to plan, it will stay there, frozen, until someone comes and removes it. An anonymous activist group called Safe Street Rebel is responsible for this so-called coning incident and dozens of others over the past few months….


September 7, 2023

You’re Doing It Wrong: Recycling and Other Myths about Tackling Climate Change

Image of two blue plastic rectangular recycling bins filled with newspapers and plastic

A slim majority of Americans think their individual actions can reduce the effects of climate change, according to a Washington Post-University of Maryland poll. But do they know which actions are the most effective? Not quite. The poll finds most people believe recycling has a lot or some impact on climate change. About three-quarters say…

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September 6, 2023

New York Is Full. And It’s the Housing Market’s Fault

Image of multi-story red brick-facade apartment building in New York City on a sunny day with blue skies.

Since last spring, roughly 100,000 asylum seekers have arrived in New York City. This is a city of immigrants, welcoming to immigrants, built by immigrants. People who were born abroad make up a third of New York’s population and own more than half of its businesses. Yet the city has struggled to accommodate this wave…

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August 25, 2023

Cities Aren’t Supposed to Burn Like This Anymore—Especially Lahaina

Image of town street with cars and people moving along sidewalks and roads with blue skies before Maui fires

Rescue crews are still searching Lahaina, Hawaii, for survivors of the catastrophic wildfire that obliterated the town last week on the island of Maui. It’s the deadliest blaze in modern American history, with 99 people confirmed dead, surpassing the 85 that perished in 2018’s Camp Fire in Paradise, California. Crews have only searched a quarter…

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August 23, 2023

Should Governments Be Blamed for Climate Change? How One Lawsuit Could Change US Policies

Image of history courthouse building of limestone in park-like setting with American flag

A landmark ruling saying Montana has a constitutional duty to guard residents from the harmful effects of climate change could have wider implications, environmental experts said. In a decision Monday lauded by activists as a potential turning point for the environmental movement, District Court Judge Kathy Seeley sided with young plaintiffs who claimed state policies…

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August 18, 2023

King County Shows Off Salmon Habitat Where Once Stood a Hotel

Image of Duwamish River surrounded by trees, office building and blue skies

The project started as a rundown hotel in a sea of asphalt. Now Chinook Wind is a wetland, a restored salmon habitat and a hook-shaped estuary where waters rise and fall with the tides and native plants blanket the shore. The transformation is almost as extraordinary as the one that turned the Duwamish River from…


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Urban@UW shares stories of urban research, teaching, and engagement by the University of Washington community through original publication and amplification of externally published articles, in order to bring visibility to the great work across the university. For communications inquiries, please email

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