Recovery, Resilience and Transformation

To Register for Long-Term Recovery Calls and Florence Updates Subscribe Below or at

2017 Disasters: Harvey, Irma, Maria, and the california wildfires long-term recovery

resilience ready zones

TRANSFOrmation: innovation, entrepreneurship, education, science and culture


Issues We are Working

2017-2018 Disasters - Across the Carolinas, California, Texas, Louisiana, Florida, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands, from the Philippines and Mexico to the Caribbean, 2017 was one of the worst disaster seasons ever. While typically, 75% of all philanthropic support commitments happen within 10 weeks of a disaster, ISD has been building and supporting a committed network of problem-solvers dedicated to addressing the long-term recovery, transformation, and resilience (LTR) issues affecting the disaster impacted zones. Interested parties are welcome to subscribe and join our weekly spotlight calls, project teams, resilience networks, and partnership hubs to address issues such as:

  • Needs assessments

  • Rural and low income community technical assistance

  • Visioning, planning, and goal-setting

  • Titling and undocumented homeowner support

  • Natural defenses and environmental security evaluations

  • Health recovery challenges

  • Small business, entrepreneurial base, and workforce development

  • Community economic development policy support

  • Resilient community evaluations and recommendations

  • Gap financing

  • Public-Private Partnership Facilitation

Education, Science, Culture and Business Relations -- we are in the early stages of what is sometimes known as the fourth Industrial Revolution or the Digital Revolution. The future of economic growth is predicated on innovation and creativity, and the future of social progress is predicated on this innovation and creativity being diffused and accessible to as many as people as possible. Businesses spend more money philanthropically on education than any other subject; they spend over $240 billion in R&D, and the entire $200 billion advertising and marketing industry alone depends on creativity. However, while there are many local success stories, the US continues to drop in global innovation, science, and math rankings. ISD's Education, Science, Culture and Business Network is designed to bring together leading experts across these disciplines to develop projects, campaigns, and policy recommendations to secure the future of the U.S. and expand its inclusiveness and accessibility.

How to Get Involved

Generally Interested? Be Part of a Problem-Solver Network

  • Subscribe to one of our weekly spotlight calls

  • Receive regular updates

  • Join a project team working on an LTR case

Focused on a Specific Region or Community? Join a Regional Network and Partnership Hub

  • Caribbean: Puerto Rico, USVI, Caribbean

  • Southeast USA: Florida, Georgia

  • Mid-Atlantic: South Carolina, North Carolina, Tennessee, Kentucky, West Virginia, Virginia

  • Gulf States: Texas, Louisiana, Mississippi, and Alabama

  • Southern California and Desert Southwest

  • Northern California and Pacific Northwest

Focused on a Specific Issue? Join an Issue Network

  • Corporate Philanthropy and Business-Society Relations

  • Education, Science, Culture, and Business

  • Health Recovery, Resilience, and Transformation

Want to Take On More Challenges? Join the Business Advisory Council

ISD is designed so that the more you put in, the more leverage you get out. No one can solve every problem alone, but through communication, coordination, and collaboration, it's amazing how much more can get done.


“The future is here. It’s just not evenly distributed yet.”



Our Story

The Institute for Sustainable Development was founded in the North Carolina Research Triangle in 2007 by a unique partnership of academic, business and philanthropic leaders, which included Duke University and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, the Chapel Hill-Carrboro and Greater Durham Chambers of Commerce, and the Fenwick Foundation. The Institute has trained more than 200 chamber of commerce executives across the United States, and 160 small businesses and non-profits in twelve U.S. states.

In July 2017, the Institute started a new chapter. Now, serving as the not-for-profit arm of IO Sustainability, ISD builds on this legacy of bringing together business, academic, and other thought leaders to promote partnerships, policies, and projects that promote (a) community resilience and disaster recovery, and (b) long-term community transformation based on applied innovation and sustainable development principles.




Stay Connected



The Institute for Sustainable Development would like to acknowledge the following companies and organizations for their commitment to solving problems, promoting partnerships, and investing in long-term economic development and social progress:



California Resiliency Alliance

Fannie Mae


Guardian Insurance

NIMSAT - University of Louisiana - Lafayette

Puerto Rico Manufacturers Association


Texas Association of Business

Wells Fargo

and over 300 other companies, organizations, and government agencies that have participated in one or more of ISD's briefings, projects or programs since July of last year.