December 2021

The Fund for Santa Barbara, UCSB Blum Center on Poverty, Inequality, and Democracy, and the USC Equity Research Institute

The Fund for Santa Barbara, in partnership with the UCSB Blum Center on Poverty, Inequality, and Democracy, and the USC Equity Research Institute launched the first Central Coast Regional Equity Study over the course of 2020-21. The goal of this research project is to deepen our understanding of regional disparities, facilitate a region-wide conversation, and support the planning and implementation of initiatives focused on advancing social, health, environmental, and economic equity. Covering Santa Barbara and Ventura counties, the study is designed to yield a periodically updated equity database, of use for teaching, research, policy, and action. The initial data compilation component of this two-county regional project was initiated in the summer of 2020.

Over the past several decades, socio-economic inequality has been on the rise, manifesting as disparities in income, employment, education, health and environmental burdens that affect communities of color in Ventura and Santa Barbara Counties. The depth of these systemic inequities has been both revealed and deepened by the pandemic. They also put equity at the forefront of our priorities as we set our sights toward recovery, and a future of genuinely shared, environmentally sustainable prosperity. The Central Coast Regional Equity Study uses rigorous, community engaged research both to bring socioeconomic inequities—and the price we pay for them—to light, and to establish concrete guideposts for regional equity.

Read our other publications by research area

    Immigrant Integration & Racial Justice

    Our work on immigrant integration and racial justice brings together three emphases: scholarship that draws on academic theory and rigorous research, data that provides information structured to highlight the process of immigrant integration over time, and engagement that seeks to create new dialogues with government, community organizers, business and civic leaders, immigrants and the voting public to advance immigrant integration and racial equity.

    Economic Inclusion & Climate Equity

    In the area of economic inclusion, we at ERI advance academic theory and practical applications linking economic growth, environmental quality, and civic health with bridging of racial and other gaps; produce accessible and actionable data and analysis through the data tools; and establish research partnerships to deepen and advance the dialogue, planning, and actions around racial equity, environmental justice, and the built environment.

    Social Movements & Governing Power

    ERI’s work in the area of governing power includes: conducting cross-disciplinary studies of today’s social movements, supporting learning and strategizing efforts to advance dialogues among organizers, funders, intermediaries, evaluators, and academics, and developing research-based social change frameworks and tools to inform—and be informed by—real-world, real-time efforts towards a vision of deep change.

    Publications Directory

    In 2020, the USC Program for Environmental and Regional Equity (PERE) and the USC Center for the Study of Immigrant Integration (CSII) merged to form the USC Equity Research Institute (ERI).

    The full list of publications published under our previous and current names can be found in our publications directory.

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