Texas Tech University

Texas Tech Taking Lead in HUD Research Center of Excellence

Allen Ramsey

September 5, 2023

Ali Nejat

The project will focus on helping local, state and federal agencies anticipate and address post-disaster needs.

Texas Tech University is taking the lead in a Center of Excellence funded by the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). 

The $3.2 million grant brings Texas Tech together with Texas A&M University at Galveston, Texas Southern University, Stony Brook University, the University of Kansas and the University of Waterloo to establish the Center of Excellence in Climate Resilient Equitable Housing (CECREH).

“Given the increasing influence that a variety of adverse circumstances, including severe weather, are having on costal, urban and rural communities across the country, I am confident that the work of this Center of Excellence is going to contribute to the resilience of vulnerable populations,” said Vice President for Research & Innovation Joseph Heppert. “Congratulations to the talented team of Texas Tech researchers and their collaborators from other institutions who organized this center and will carry out this extremely important work.”

Ali Nejat, an associate professor in the Department of Civil, Environmental & Construction Engineering at Texas Tech's Edward E. Whitacre Jr. College of Engineering was awarded the lead on the project and will serve as the center's director. 

Nejat will be joined on the project by Texas Tech's Katharine Hayhoe, a Horn Distinguished Professor in the Department of Political Science, and Bradley Ewing, the C.T. McLaughlin Chair of Free Enterprise in the Jerry S. Rawls College of Business.

They will work with leading housing, hazards/disasters, environmental justice, urban planning and climate researchers from the partner institutions to generate an evidence base that enhances the capabilities of local, state and federal government agencies to effectively identify, anticipate and address needs following natural disasters and promote more inclusive housing recovery options. 

CECREH joins the other two Centers of Excellence nationwide previously funded by HUD to conduct housing and community development research through innovative approaches aimed at underserved communities, with HUD making funds available to Hispanic Serving Institutions. 

“This is an excellent example of how the combination of our values as a college, including being a supportive community, improving teaching and learning, as well as focusing on discovery and research work together to improve the lives of many,” said Roland Faller, dean of the College of Engineering. “I congratulate the team on this great project.”