This fall, New America released a digital magazine about the topic of resilience. In this issue, we featured the wisdom and unique perspectives of changemakers, thought leaders, and creatives on how we, as a nation, can bolster the resilience of our society.
The topics covered here are diverse, ranging from immigration and refugees to food security and transformations in the workplace. Each interview weaves together narratives of personal growth and reinvention with examples of organizational advances and societal progress. Candid stories of failure, both personal and professional, make the interviews relatable and intimate, and the lense of resilience gives them a sense of optimism that is often missing from discussions of today’s societal issues.
Over the past year, we were particularly glad to take on this project at New America, given our many years of work building more Resilient Communities in New York City by working with local groups to create wireless mesh communication networks that can withstand even the worst storms. Further, our Resource Security program understands resilience as a core part of how we need to define security itself, which must include preparing for the impact of climate change on our food and water supplies. It has also studied the ways in which technology can help build local resilience in the face of natural disasters. And in a very different context, our colleagues with the Political Reform program have studied resilience to political violence. Their paper reviews insights lessons learned from social science and international peacebuilding to explore American resilience in the face of political violence.
The work of our colleagues, as well as every contributor in this magazine, brings a new perspective, adding a new puzzle piece to the definition of resilience, expanding and refining it to more accurately describe how individuals and societies deal with change.
Many of our colleagues, past and present, have contributed to this project and we hope you will all take some time to navigate through and read some of the contributions. Lastly, this project was brought to life through the work of Erin Cochran and Kodiak Starr of Iced Coffee, Please, as well as Emily Schneider.