Photo of Elizabeth Cooper

Elizabeth Cooper

Senior Associate

Elizabeth's work focuses on helping organizations and stakeholders collaborate and build consensus more effectively around a range of complex public issues. Her work includes facilitation, community engagement, and synthesizing stakeholder input into decision-making and policy processes. She also works with public and non-profit organizations to strengthen collaborative capacity and guide strategic planning.

Areas of Focus

Much of Elizabeth’s work focuses on the intersections among climate change, environment and land use issues, and local planning and policy issues. In her facilitation work with stakeholders from diverse groups and perspectives, she brings expertise in climate adaptation/resilience, municipal planning/land use, transportation, environment and Superfund, water, and agriculture, among other issues.

Exemplary Projects

  • Lower Mystic Regional Working Group: Long-range transportation planning study

  • The Climigration Network

  • The Nature Conservancy New York - Climate Adaptation Strategic Planning

  • Cambridge Climate Resilience Zoning Task Force

  • Newtown Creek Superfund Site Community Advisory Group

  • Mystic River Watershed Initiative

  • Wolastoq/St. John River First Nations and Federal Watershed Collaboration

  • Vermont Payment for Ecosystem Services Working Group


The following is a partial list of clients:

Federal Agencies

  • U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)

  • Department of Interior

  • National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA)

State and Regional Agencies

  • Massachusetts Department of Transportation

  • Massachusetts Executive Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs:

    • Office of Coastal Zone Management

    • Division of Ecological Restoration

    • Department of Environmental Protection

  • Metropolitan Area Planning Council

  • Vermont Agency of Agriculture, Food and Markets

  • New York State Energy Research and Development Authority 

Local Municipalities

  • Barnstable, MA

  • Boston, MA

  • Cambridge, MA

  • Everett, MA

  • Newbury, MA 

  • Scituate, MA
  • Somerville, MA

Companies/Nonprofit Organizations

  • The Nature Conservancy

  • The Barr Foundation

  • The Climigration Network

  • Woods Hole Oceanographic Institute

  • Mystic River Watershed Association

Education and Trainings

Elizabeth holds a Master’s degree in Conflict Resolution from the McCormack Graduate School of Policy and Global Studies at the University of Massachusetts Boston, where she focused on public dispute resolution and environmental policy making. She holds a BA in Critical Social Thought from Mount Holyoke College. Elizabeth is a mediator, trained in accordance with Massachusetts General Law Chapter 233 § 23C.

Publications and Presentations

Pathways to Climate Resilience; Strategies for the Greater Boston Area. 2019, co-authored with Ona Ferguson and Osamu Kumasaka. This report, written for the Barr Foundation, describes the current suite of leading activities on climate resilience at a municipal scale in eastern Massachusetts, outlines strategies, and identifies opportunities for action.

Cooper, Elizabeth S. “Community Engagement 101: Why you need to involve the public, and how to do it well." Presented at: Cape Cod Commission One Cape Summit. 2016 June 24. Hyannis, Massachusetts. 

Cooper, Elizabeth S. “A Critical Analysis of the Role of the Climate Secretariat in UNFCCC Negotiations.” Paper presented at: Conflict Studies & Global Governance: The New Generation of Ideas. 2014 Oct. 31-Nov. 1. Boston, Massachusetts.

Aguirre, Jessica C. and Elizabeth Cooper. “Evo Morales, Climate Change, and the Paradoxes of a Social- Movement Presidency.” Latin American Perspectives 37 (2010): 238-44.