Celina Balderas Guzmán

Assistant Professor

Celina Balderas Guzmán, PhD, is Assistant Professor in the Department of Landscape Architecture. Dr. Balderas’ research spans environmental planning, design, and science and focuses on climate adaptation to sea level rise on the coast and urban stormwater inland. On the coast, her work demonstrates specific ways that the climate adaptation actions of humans and adaptation of ecosystems are interdependent. Her work explores how these interdependencies can be maladaptive by shifting vulnerabilities to other humans or non-humans, or synergistic. Using ecological modeling, she has explored these interdependencies focusing on coastal wetlands as nature-based solutions. Her work informs cross-sectoral adaptation planning at a regional scale.

Inland, Dr. Balderas studies urban stormwater through a social-ecological lens. Using data science and case studies, her work investigates the relationship between stormwater pollution and the social, urban form, and land cover characteristics of watersheds. In past research, she developed new typologies of stormwater wetlands based on lab testing in collaboration with environmental engineers. The designs closely integrated hydraulic performance, ecological potential, and recreational opportunities into one form.

Her research has been funded by major institutions such as the National Science Foundation, National Socio-Environmental Synthesis Center, UC Berkeley, and the MIT Abdul Latif Jameel Water and Food Systems Lab. She has a PhD in the Department of Landscape Architecture and Environmental Planning from the University of California, Berkeley. Previously, she obtained masters degrees in urban planning and urban design, as well as an undergraduate degree in architecture all from MIT.