Revolutionizing Energy Justice for All

About the Guest:

Diana Hernández, PhD is a tenured Associate Professor of Sociomedical Sciences at Columbia University’s Mailman School of Public Health. Dr. Hernández conducts research at the intersection of energy, equity, housing and health. A sociologist by training, her work focuses on the social and environmental determinants of health and examines the impacts of policy and place-based interventions on the health and well-being of socioeconomically disadvantaged populations. An innovator in the field, Dr. Hernández has operationalized and conducted foundational research on the concept of ‘energy insecurity’ which reflects the inability to adequately meet household energy needs. Her path-breaking work on energy insecurity has explored the multiple dimensions of this phenomenon identifying sociodemographic disparities, adverse consequences and promising interventions toward energy justice. A noted visionary, Professor Hernández’ work is broadly dedicated to exploring the links between housing and health and reimagining how multiple unit housing can support public health as a site of intervention and health promotion. Much of her community-oriented research has been done in collaboration with community groups and government agencies around the country. Moreover, several of her projects have been conducted in her native South Bronx neighborhood, where she also lives and invests in social impact real estate.

About this course:

Public health has multiple intersections. One of the areas is the energy sector--which has disproportionate, negative impacts on low income communities. In this course, Diana Hernandez draws on her experiences and explores the concept of energy insecurity. She follows this with an innovative approach to energy justice and energy savings.

With shelter as a fundamental need of people, Diana details the Social Impact of Real Estate. She also highlights the need for participatory and community-oriented research as a means to sustainable public health interventions.

Learning Objectives:

  • Investigating the concepts of energy insecurity and energy justice
  • Surveying the concept of Social Impact Real Estate
  • Delving into the concepts of participatory and community-oriented research for public health interventions

Public Health and Social Justice Topics Covered:

  • Energy Insecurity
  • Energy Justice
  • Energy Injustice
  • Environmental Justice

Revolutionizing Energy Justice for All_ Interview with Diana Hernandez_ 40 under 40 Public Health Catalyst Award Winner 2022, Syllabus.pdf
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