Multi-level Governance, Civic Capacity, and Overcoming the Climate Change “Adaptation Deficit” in Baltimore, Maryland

  • Andrea SarzynskiEmail author
Part of the The Urban Book Series book series (UBS)


This chapter explores the policy and planning efforts of the city of Baltimore, Maryland, with respect to climate change adaptation using the institutional analysis and development framework. The city’s innovative combined disaster preparedness and climate change adaptation plan was adopted in 2013 and situated within a complex, multi-level climate governance regime established in 2007. It’s planning efforts have been recognized for their high quality from the federal government and nonprofit organizations. Additionally, city staff chose to build civic capacity on climate change resilience early in its implementation efforts, reaching more than one thousand residents to date. Yet civic dialogue around climate adaptation or private adaptive action has not emerged. Instead, adaptation efforts appear squarely rooted within the governmental realm and subject to resource constraints of its primary institutions, leaders, and staff. Thus, the Baltimore case reveals both the resilience of staff when conducting climate adaptation planning in an atmosphere of fiscal constraint, and the difficulties in fostering a community-wide sense of responsibility for climate adaptation action.


Climate change Adaptation Civic capacity Baltimore Governance 


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.University of DelawareNewarkUSA

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