UCR Leads the Way in Climate Action and Innovation with the First-Ever 2024 Inland SoCal OASIS™ Climate Action Conference

By UC Riverside, Office of Technology Partnerships

The University of California, Riverside (UCR) continues to spearhead impactful initiatives in climate action and innovation through the first-ever 2024 Inland SoCal OASIS™ Climate Action Conference, held on January 30th, 2024. Hosted by UCR’s Office of Technology Partnerships & UCR EPIC Innovation & Entrepreneurship Programs, this pioneering conference convened thought leaders, researchers, entrepreneurs, and community members to address regional climate adaptation, resilience, and mitigation strategies.

With a robust agenda featuring expert-led panel discussions, research showcases, and collaborative breakout sessions, the 2024 Inland SoCal OASIS™ Climate Action Conference provided a platform for interdisciplinary dialogue and actionable insights. Attendees, numbering over 170, included representatives from academia, government, industry, and the community, creating an environment conducive to exploring innovative solutions and fostering meaningful partnerships.

Key highlights of the conference included several panel discussions, one titled “The State of Climate Change in the Inland Empire,” featuring influential figures like Rafael Guzman, Tracy Sato, Nadereh Afsharmanesh, and Alberto Giron, who shared insights on the region’s current climate landscape and ongoing initiatives. Also featured in the program were research presentations by esteemed UCR fellows Dr. Dawn H Nagel, Dr. Basak Guler, Dr. Xi Chen, Dr. Mona Eskandari, and Dr. Jeoffrey George, highlighting their groundbreaking projects, and a thought-provoking keynote address by Steve Slater (Naussler Group) on the role of entrepreneurship in addressing climate change.

Local climate entrepreneurs came to share their experiences in entrepreneurship such as Gina Oliver and Richard Hutchison (From the Land), Gabriela Atwater (A&G Electronics), Gray Cash (Cash Electronic Designs), and Rito Sur (Indrio Technologies), all former participants in the 2023 SoCal OASIS™ Accelerator Program and pitch finalists at the 2023 SoCal OASIS™ Pitch Finals, both powered by UCR’s Office of Technology Partnerships.

“The 2024 Inland SoCal OASIS™ Climate Action Conference was a testament to UCR’s commitment to driving positive change in our region,” said Fortino Morales, Sustainability Officer at UCR’s Sustainability Office. “We are proud to have provided a platform where diverse stakeholders could come together to explore innovative approaches to climate action and lay the groundwork for future collaboration.”

The 2024 Inland SoCal OASIS™ Climate Action Conference achieved a substantial turnout of over 170 attendees, attracting a diverse audience of researchers, environmental enthusiasts, experts, activists, and community members, all who underscored the significance of the discussions on climate adaptation, resilience, and mitigation strategies. The event’s success was evident in the engaging breakout sessions covering topics such as higher education sustainability, climate entrepreneurship, and circular economy practices, followed by an interactive networking reception that facilitated meaningful connections and knowledge sharing among attendees—all contributing to a collective effort to address climate change in Southern California. 

The event was made possible by the generous support of sponsors including The James Irvine Foundation and US Bank, and was powered by the SoCal OASIS™ initiative. OASIS, led by UCR, is dedicated to promoting sustainability, social inclusion, and innovation in the Inland Southern California region. 

For more information on the 2024 Inland SoCal OASIS™ Climate Action Conference and future initiatives from UCR’s Office of Technology Partnerships & UCR EPIC Innovation & Entrepreneurship Programs, please visit https://ucrotp.ucr.edu/. Subscribe to our newsletter to stay updated on upcoming events and news.