Louisiana State University
US National Science Foundation

News & Updates

Apr. 13, 2013, PI Lam was interviewed by Louisiana Public Broadcasting (4-23-2013)

PI Lam and Co-PI Liu contributed commentaries on the film “Beasts of the Southern Wild” (28-02-2013)

PI Dr. Lam was interviewed in the Flood Aware Conference in the Netherlands (1-31-2013)

Co-PI Dr. Reams was interviewed in the Flood Aware Conference in the Netherlands (1-31-2013)

PI Dr.Lam had a new publication on PLOS One (10-24-2012)

The CNH project:

Coupled Natural and Human Dynamics in a Vulnerable Coastal System

This interdisciplinary project investigates the sustainability of coastal Louisiana, particularly the Lower Mississippi River Basin (LMRD). The disappearance of land coupled with significant population decline is a critical problem in the LMRD southern region (the "South"), whereas a rapid increase in population has occurred in its northern part (the "North").

Our research addresses questions on whether southern coastal Louisiana will reach a tipping point that would make it too difficult to sustain, and whether the same type of economic and ecosystem functions has gradually migrated to the neighboring region to the north.

The research aims to quantify and explain these changes using a coupled natural-human system approach, as well as evaluate their implications for future planning and mitigation. Specifically, our four research objectives are:

  • develop methods to assess the sustainability or resilience of a coastal system;
  • develop a system-level model to capture and quantify the dynamic linkages among the major natural and human components;
  • compare and contrast the resiliency between the northern and southern coastal Louisiana regions to understand factors controlling the resiliency;
  • simulate future scenarios for planning and decision-making.

This project is funded by the National Science Foundation (NSF) with a start date of 09/01/12 and an end date of 09/30/2018. The total awarded amount is 1,499,935.

This project is a collaboration of researchers from

  • Department of Environmental Sciences
  • Department of Oceanography and Coastal Science
  • School of Renewable Energy resources
  • Center for Energy Studies
  • and Department of Finance
    of Louisiana State University

Core researchers include

For more information, please visit:

The full abstract in the NSF website

The LSU press release about the project

This website is based upon work supported by the National Science Foundation (NSF) under Grant Number (NSF Grant Number: 1212112).
Any opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations expressed in this website do not necessarily reflect the views of the agency.

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