Subject Matter Experts

Why should you become an SME in the Resilience Dialogues?

Resilience Dialogues SMEs come from a range of backgrounds including planning and engineering, community engagement, applied climate science, community health, and more! SMEs are motivated to respond to pressing community climate adaptation and resilience needs. Serving as a Resilience Dialogues SME will help you build the skills, knowledge, and experience to effectively contribute to holistic, collaborative, cross-sector resilience efforts. For those newer to the profession, engaging with communities, other SMEs, and Resilience Dialogues facilitators on an ongoing basis will help you grow as a climate change adaptation professional and expand your network. For those who have been working in this field for many years, the Resilience Dialogues is a great way to connect with new communities and learn to apply your skills and knowledge in a variety of contexts. The Resilience Dialogues is putting cutting-edge community engagement, co-production, and climate resilience principles into practice, and this is an opportunity for you to gain experience integrating those principles into your own work.

The Resilience Dialogues is also an opportunity for your organization, agency or company to increase awareness and use of its climate and resilience-related products and services in local communities. As a participant in the Resilience Dialogues, you will gain implicit and explicit feedback on your resilience products and services, build your relationship with individuals and organizations involved in Resilience Dialogues, and create potential opportunities for partnership or collaboration on future resilience activities.

What does it mean to be a Resilience Dialogues SME?

Dialogue structure & length

Each dialogue consists of a team of 3-5 community leaders, 3-5 SMEs, and a facilitator. Teams participate in a series of two dialogues, collectively known as a “Community Dialogue.” The Community Dialogue is a total of ten days, and includes:

  • Framing dialogue: Climate Variability and Vulnerability (5 days in length) = Focused on understanding local climate impacts and identifying the key adaptation risks and opportunities
  • Connecting dialogue: Resilience Planning Resources & Next Steps (5 days in length) = Focused on identifying key action areas and next steps, and identifying the tools, resources, and experts that are most relevant to the community and its needs.

Role of an SME

The dialogues take place asynchronously on an online platform, functioning similarly to an online chat room or discussion board. Throughout the dialogues, you will engage with community leaders via the platform to identify local climate risks and frame localized, culturally relevant ways to think about climate change resilience and adaptation, as well as explore specific resilience questions in a local context. SMEs are volunteers who want to share their expertise and provide technical assistance to build stronger, more resilient communities. For the Framing dialogue, we are particularly in need of SMEs who are skilled at thinking holistically about climate resilience and connecting climate change to local concerns. For the Connecting dialogue, we are particularly in need of SMEs who are knowledgeable about climate resilience products and services.

Time commitment

You should expect to spend an average of 1-2 hours/day engaging with the online platform while participating in a dialogue. This means that a commitment to one dialogue (either the Framing or Connecting dialogue) requires 5-10 hours total, and the time commitment for both dialogues is 10-20 hours total. SMEs can engage at any time of day that is convenient for them, (including evenings), but are expected to participate for at least one hour each day the dialogue is running. You should expect to spend an additional 2-3 hours before the Community Dialogue begins on a team introduction call and SME on-boarding.


Click here to volunteer as a Resilience Dialogues subject matter expert.

Thank you to our past SMEs!

Fall 2018

Josh Stack Stack Law, PLLC
Mike Hill Gensler
Kathleen Fallon New York Sea Grant
Katie Spidalieri Georgetown Climate Center
Heather Wade Texas Sea Grant at Texas A&M University
Justin Kates City of Nashua NH
Joshua Moses Haverford College
Jillian Howl  
Megan Susman U.S. EPA
Alessandra Jerolleman Jacksonville State University
Jayne Knott University of New Hampshire
Jia Li U.S. EPA
Sebastian Malter City of Philadelphia
Sue Blythe Flash Future Project
Marni Koopman Geos Institute
Kimberly Duong UC Irvine
Marcus Griswold County of San Mateo
Tessa Hill UC Davis Bodega Marine Laboratory
Cristina Bradatan Texas Tech University