LUSKIN SUMMIT 2021: Called to Action
The 2021 Luskin Summit took place as a series of webinars focusing on the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic and other important public policy issues.
April 19: This session moderated by Adrienne Alpert of ABC7 Eyewitness News in Los Angeles featured the unveiling of the 6th annual Quality of Life Index, which is a joint project of the UCLA Luskin Los Angeles Initiative led by longtime local political leader Zev Yaroslavsky and The California Endowment. Researchers ask residents to rate their quality of life in nine categories and 40 subcategories focusing on topics such as cost of living, education, the environment, the economy, race relations and health care.
April 9: With cities in Los Angeles County facing a requirement to build 800,00 new homes over the next eight years, this morning-long event focused on the lessons that can be learned from coalitions in places such as Seattle, Minneapolis, the East Bay near San Francisco and elsewhere that have achieved political and legislative wins in recent years while strengthening protections for those most vulnerable to displacement.
April 1: This session explored homelessness, focusing on what can be done to solve a chronic and severe affordable housing shortage in Los Angeles County that contributes to more than 60,000 people being unhoused. Speakers included members of the Committee for Greater L.A. that in September 2020 issued the “No Going Back” report, which argues that systemic changes are needed to ensure that pandemic recovery efforts and other governance decisions occur in a manner that ensures racial and economic equity.
Feb. 24: This session organized by the Hub for Health Intervention, Policy and Practice at UCLA focused on sexual health, home-based testing and telemedicine. Although implementation of these strategies in L.A. County had traditionally been slow, experts say the uptick in remote delivery of medical services amid the pandemic presents an opportunity to integrate more remote practices for sexual health care.
Feb. 22: The COVID-19 pandemic has dramatically affected public transit systems. Fewer people are riding. Public health protocols and workforce reductions are complicating operations. More people without housing are turning to transit for shelter. And financial shortfalls loom large. This panel organized by the Institute of Transportation Studies explored the challenges faced by transit agencies as they seek to recover. View a recording of the session:
Feb. 17: A panel of scholars and public officials discussed the importance of public parks for our physical and mental well-being, as well as the environmental health of communities, especially during the COVID-19 pandemic. They outlined a watershed moment in which new funding offers an opportunity to improve access to public spaces in Los Angeles and throughout California. View a recording of the session:
Feb. 10: A panel of housing experts spoke about the economic slump precipitated by COVID-19 that has led to evictions in California and across the country. They said this crisis calls for an immediate response, presenting an opportunity to rethink housing policies and our housing system, addressing longstanding failings.View a recording of the session:
Feb. 4: Wildfires ravaged an unprecedented amount of California in recent years. This session featuring public officials and UCLA faculty explored the impacts of wildfires on health, low-income housing and small water systems, as well as highlighting innovative tactics to increase resiliency, especially for populations that are most vulnerable to wildfire. View a recording of the session:
Jan. 28: Anthony Rendon, speaker of the California Assembly since 2016, spoke about his legislative priorities for the year ahead and answered questions posed by UCLA Luskin Dean Gary Segura about housing affordability, healthcare and civic engagement. View a recording of the session:
A Look Back at Luskin Summit 2020
Videos from the 2020 virtual Luskin Summit series are in a Showcase on the UCLA Luskin channel on Vimeo.
June 10: Leaders of Los Angeles’ philanthropic community discussed current issues in the city.
May 22: How economic stimulus packages offer opportunity to invest in environmental sustainability-related initiatives. Co-hosted by the Luskin Center for Innovation and the USC Schwarzenegger Institute.
May 20: As anti-immigrant sentiment continues to reverberate, this session focused on Latino community mobilization in the Trump era.
May 15: Faculty affiliated with the UCLA Institute of Transportation Studies discussed the evolution of transit and the pandemic’s implications for the weeks, months, and years ahead.
May 13: Laura Abrams, professor and chair of social welfare, spoke with alumni social workers about how the pandemic has affected their work with vulnerable clients and communities.
May 12: In “Man of Tomorrow: The Relentless Life of Jerry Brown,” author Jim Newton explores the unconventional arc of former California Gov. Jerry Brown’s career. Newton and Brown discussed Brown’s career, his impact on national politics and his take on the future.
May 7: This discussion focused on housing in the era of coronavirus and how today’s challenges might shape future policy. Co-hosted by the UCLA Lewis Center for Regional Policy Studies and the UCLA Ziman Center for Real Estate.
May 4: A session hosted by Professor Ron Avi Astor that discussed how schools can deal with the reality of educating during the COVID-19 crisis in Los Angeles and in countries such as Israel and Chile.
April 30: The Voting Rights Project and the Latino Policy and Politics Initiative at UCLA Luskin led discussion on the importance of vote-by-mail during the 2020 elections.
April 29: Author Geoff Manaugh discussed his forthcoming book on the history and future of quarantine with Assistant Professor Kian Goh of Urban Planning. The book is due out in spring 2021.
April 27: This session focused on opioid users and the structural determinants of health, such as poverty and homelessness, and co-occurring health issues, such as HIV and tobacco use.
April 23: Zev Yaroslavsky revealed the results of the fifth annual Quality of Life Index, highlighting the satisfaction of Los Angeles County residents with their lives across nine categories.
A Look Back at Luskin Summit 2019
On April 24, 2019, the UCLA Luskin School of Public Affairs held the inaugural Luskin Summit. Its theme was “Livable L.A.”
Congresswoman Karen Bass, who has served in the U.S. House of Representatives since 2011, provided the keynote address. She said that “Democrats and Republicans actually do work together” in the nation’s capital. “We don’t hate each other.”
Providing a framework for the day’s discussions was the unveiling of the fourth Quality of Life Index, a project at UCLA Luskin that is supported by The California Endowment under the direction of longtime Los Angeles political stalwart Zev Yaroslavsky, director of the Los Angeles Initiative. The survey asks county residents to rate their quality of life in a range of categories and to answer questions about important issues facing them and the region.
Dealing With Disruption: From Public Transit to Public Mobility
Faculty Presenter: Brian Taylor, UCLA Institute of Transportation Studies Director and Professor of Urban Planning
Moderator: Richard Katz, Board Member, UCLA Luskin School of Public Affairs
- Conan Cheung, Senior Executive Officer, Metro
- Seleta Reynolds, General Manager, L.A. Department of Transportation
Preparing to Thrive in a Hotter Los Angeles
Faculty Presenter: Jisung Park, Luskin Center for Innovation Scholar and Assistant Professor of Public Policy
Moderator: Liz Koslov, UCLA Institute of the Environment and Sustainability Scholar and Assistant Professor of Urban Planning
- Mark Gold, UCLA Associate Vice Chancellor for Environment and Sustainability
- Elizabeth Rhoades, L.A. County Public Health
- Seth Jacobson, Senior Director, Climate Resolve
Why Access to Safe, Affordable Water Is Still a Challenge in Los Angeles
Faculty Presenter: Greg Pierce, Associate Director of Research, Luskin Center for Innovation
Moderator: JR DeShazo, Luskin Center for Innovation Director and Professor and Chair of Public Policy
- Caryn Mandelbaum, Water Director, Environment Now California Program, Leonardo Dicaprio Foundation
- David Nahai, David Nahai Consulting Services; former CEO, L.A. Department of Water and Power; Board Member, Luskin Center for Innovation
- Angel Jennings, Reporter, Los Angeles Times
A Housing-Oriented Look at Understanding Rising L.A. Inequality
Faculty Presenters: Mike Lens, Associate Faculty Director, Lewis Center for Regional Policy Studies; Associate Professor of Urban Planning and Public Policy
Moderator: Evelyn Blumenberg, Director, Lewis Center for Regional Policy Studies; Professor of Urban Planning
- Becky Dennison, Executive Director, Venice Community Housing
- Leonora Camner, Director, Abundant Housing LA
Census 2020 and Los Angeles
Faculty Presenters: Matt Barreto, Latino Policy and Politics Initiative Faculty Co-Director and Professor of Political Science and Chicana/o Studies
Moderator: Sonja Diaz, Latino Policy and Politics Initiative Director
- Erica Bernal-Martinez, Chief Operating Officer, National Association of Latino Elected Officials
- Berenice Nuñez Constant, Vice President of Government Relations, AltaMed Health Services Corporation
Can ‘Decarceration’ Policies Make Los Angeles Safer?
Faculty Presenter: Laura Abrams, Professor and Chair of Social Welfare
Moderator: Bryonn Bain, Scholar-Artist, UCLA African American Studies
- Isaac Bryan, MPP ’18, Million Dollar Hoods
- Patricia Soung, Children’s Defense Fund
- Susan Champion, Stanford Three Strikes Project
A panel discussion about civic issues was moderated by Adrienne Alpert of ABC7 in Los Angeles. It featured:
- Mayor Emily Gabel-Luddy – Burbank
- Mayor Thomas Small – Culver City
- Mayor James Butts – Inglewood
- Mayor Tim Sandoval – Pomona