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National Conference on Equitable Development

June 20-21, 2018

Bethune - Cookman University

Performing Arts Center

Daytona Beach, FL 

The National Conference on Equitable Development at Bethune-Cookman University will provide a forum for discussion of approaches to addressing health, economic, housing, and environmental disparities in our communities. This conference aims to provide under-resourced and/or low-income communities with strategies for shaping development that addresses their needs and respects their values.  It will build capacity for smart growth, environmental justice, and equitable development that community-based organizations, local and regional decision makers, developers, and others can use to build healthy, sustainable, and economically vibrant communities. Policy development, direct services, educational programming, and restorative and/or revitalization practices are just a selection of the strategies citizens and professionals can utilize to create thriving communities.  Such communities have clean air, land, and water; offer affordable homes; provide safe and reliable transportation; maintain open access to parks and recreational spaces.

Targeted Audience

This conference is intended for stakeholders in governmental, non-governmental, public, private, and education sectors that are involved in community planning, development, and health. We are especially interested in attracting those involved in research and practice in equitable development, community-based organizations, community health, local and regional decision makers, and community designers and developers.

Anticipated Benefits

This conference builds on previous efforts by the organizers to encourage conversations and build capacity for equitable development in Florida. As precursors to this conference, we have organized smaller workshops across the state in 2016 and 2017 aimed specifically at the topics of environmental justice, brownfields redevelopment, wastewater and other infrastructures management, and community engagement strategies. This conference brings all of these various strands together in a holistic fashion to support and encourage equitable development, especially in minority and low-income communities. This conference will also catalyze new research and new partnerships and collaborations by bringing diverse stakeholder groups together.


This conference will take place at the Dr. Mary McLeod Bethune Performing Arts Center at Bethune-Cookman University—an Historically Black College and University (HBCU) located in Daytona Beach, Florida.  The Dr. Mary McLeod Bethune Performing Arts Center is a $23 million state-of-the-art Center that hosts a wide variety of musical and theatrical performances as well as conferences and workshops.

Conference Planning Committee:

Conference planning committee LOGOs(Bethune - Cookman University, University of South Florida & the center for brownfield research development, florida agricultural and mechanical university: School of the environment, Cardno )
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