Resilience from the ground up




P+SET (Permaculture plus Social Equity) is a collaboration comprised of individuals and firms passionate about community-led design that provides beneficial outcomes for people and planet. P+SET composes with rather than imposes upon, because we believe that designing with community is indispensable to any design’s vitality and success. We also design as members of this particular community, as our team includes longtime locals who are deeply familiar with the social and ecological challenges our communities face.

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Permaculture + Social Equity Team (P+SET) continues to work  for a stronger, safer Bay Area, by designing innovative solutions that tackle the impacts of climate change in the Bay Area, before disaster strikes. The team’s design process relies heavily on local voices to inspire real transformation. Together with community, P+SET will utilize the next design phase to listen and learn from the insights of local residents, co-designing a resilience curriculum that will be piloted this spring with young leaders from three of the Bay Area's communities most vulnerable to sea level rise. This curriculum will help empower leadership on coastal resilience and climate change issues, ensuring that design solutions proposed for these areas reflect community needs and wisdom.


P+SET aims to create lasting regional resilience from the ground up across the Bay Area, starting in three main sites where vulnerable communities are already organizing for resilience.


The Bay has transformed into a complex social and ecological habitat for a huge variety of people and species many of who are critically vulnerable to sea level rise and other effects of climate change. To truly reach resilience requires extensive, long-term work to build up a general culture of resilience to underpin all other efforts. Through the cultivation of empowered ecoliteracy, connecting people to their landscapes and to each other, P+SET believes communities at the grassroots level can better lead in co-constructing social and environmental equity.


Creating a culture of resilience requires people across the Bay Area view resilience through a community centric model and to put community voices at the center of the design and decision-making process. To have community voices be heard, they must feel literate and empowered on the issues that face them. Thus, P+SET is developing a program for training in design skills and ecoliteracy with young local leaders from select counties along the Bay. These leaders will learn from P+SET — as designers and ‘experts’ — as P+SET learns from them, in the process developing a curriculum that can be applied in collaboration with other vulnerable communities. This is a much needed first step to underpin the future leadership of vulnerable communities in Bay Area resilience design.