When engineers partner with community groups, they can use their expertise to support local advocacy efforts, leading to more effective and equitable policy change. However, engineers are rarely trained in how to meaningfully engage with other community stakeholders. This workshop will feature a variety of ways that engineers can use their expertise in service of community-based organizations who are leading advocacy efforts for more evidence-based and justice-centered environmental policies and outcomes. We will also highlight ways in which community-based organizations are involving engineers and scientists in their advocacy work to make policy change. This workshop will feature participants from local Dallas community organizations working on environmental justice sharing their experiences and best practices for building equitable partnerships.
This panel will feature case studies and best practices from different levels of government and civic society on how experts can center people in their technical work and advocacy. Panelists will highlight adaptable lessons on how engineers can support grassroots groups working for the health of their communities and the planet. Through these stories of partnerships, we will create a space for co-learning about best practices and tools to engage in authentic collaboration with grassroots partners. We will incorporate time for discussion with the panelists and among attendees about how to apply these lessons to their work. These skills apply to attendees at all career levels who are interested in developing leadership skills that focus on just outcomes. Attendees will leave with resources and frameworks they can bring to their own local advocacy efforts.