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Designing for Bottom-Up Adaptation to Extreme Heat

Designing for Bottom-Up Adaptation to Extreme Heat

Jennifer Weiler, Stacey Kuznetsov, Piyum Fernando, Emily Ritter, Nathan Greene and Priyanka Parekh / USA
Arizona State University
Paper

In the wake of global climate change, our world is projected to heat up and experience more extreme heat waves over the next few decades. Phoenix, Arizona, where this research was conducted, is one of the hottest locations on the planet and presents a testbed for understanding and addressing heat-related challenges. This paper focuses on adaptation as a design strategy that compliments existing approaches to mitigate human impact on the environment. We report on findings from a summer-long diary study that reveals how extreme heat impacts human lives, how participants cope with extreme heat. These findings motivated our critical making work themed around adaption, focusing on artifacts for visualizing, coping with, and utilizing extreme heat. In constructing these artifacts, we critically reflect on both the benefits and drawbacks of designing for adaptation and suggest hybrid approaches that mitigate human impact on and help people adapt to climate change.