media release

CLIVE competes for MIT award

August 20, 2014

Nick Hedley, (North Vancouver resident), 778.782.4515, (email best contact)
Carol Thorbes, PAMR, 778.782.3035;


CLIVE, a science-based community engaging 3D geo-visualization tool developed by Simon Fraser University and University of Prince Edward Island (UPEI) researchers, has caught the attention of judges in a Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT)-sponsored competition.

Researchers at SFU’s Spatial Interface Research Lab in the Faculty of Environment and UPEI’s climate lab designed the Coastal Impact Visualization Environment tool (CLIVE) to help communities deal with climate change in PEI. The tool helps the public and stakeholders better understand how ongoing coastal erosion and oceanic thermal expansion affect them where they live.

Judges in MIT’s Communicating Coastal Risk and Resilience Competition have selected CLIVE as one of six semi-finalists from a slate of 18 original entrants.

Via the competition, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) in the U.S. seeks solutions and systems that help communities better appreciate the impact of extreme weather risks.

CLIVE’s co-inventors are Nick Hedley, SFU geographer, Adam Fenech, UPEI professor and climate change expert, and graduate students Alex Chen (SFU) and Andrew Doiron (UPEI).

“It’s fantastic that a small but innovative spatial interface and geo-visualization lab collaborating with a climate change team on the other side of Canada can create a climate-change impact tool that is well received by citizens, government and other groups across PEI,” says Hedley.

“The invention has sparked deep and extensive engagement, a government-sponsored road show and social mobilization about its use. Acknowledgement in an international competition is icing on the cake.”

With Monday, Aug. 25, the closing date for judging fast approaching, the public is invited to vote on their favoured entry. To register and help vote CLIVE into the top spot or learn more about the competition, click here. The winners will be announced at the end of August.

Winners of this contest will have the opportunity to meet with NOAA staff to discuss their ideas, explore opportunities for funding and to potentially influence how NOAA’s National Ocean Service invests in community resilience.

Judges Choice and Popular Choice winners will also be recognized and publicized by the MIT Climate CoLab and invited to showcase their proposals at a conference held at MIT fall 2014, where a $10,000 Grand Prize will be awarded.

Simon Fraser University is consistently ranked among Canada's top comprehensive universities and is one of the top 50 universities in the world under 50 years old. With campuses in Vancouver, Burnaby and Surrey, B.C., SFU engages actively with the community in its research and teaching, delivers almost 150 programs to more than 30,000 students, and has more than 130,000 alumni in 130 countries.


Simon Fraser University: Engaging Students. Engaging Research. Engaging Communities.

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