The Blum Center hosts an array of different programming throughout the year to support learning, debate, and engagement on issues related to poverty, inequality, and democracy. Scroll down to learn more.


 Central Coast Regional Equity Initiative

The Regional Equity Initiative is sponsored by the UCSB Blum Center and The Fund for Santa Barbara. Our goal is to deepen our understanding of regional disparities, facilitate a region-wide conversation, and support the planning and implementation of initiatives focused on advancing social, health, environmental, and economic equity. In collaboration with the USC Equity Research Institute we launched the first Central Coast Regional Equity Study covering Santa Barbara and Ventura counties for 2020-21.

Research funding is available to conduct research that contributes to the Regional Equity Initiative. For more information on how to apply, please check back for updates to the annual Call for Proposals.

Learn more about our 2022-23 award recipients.




 Cooperative Economics Initiative

The Blum Center is pleased to announce a new Center initiative on Cooperative Economics. Cooperative Economics encompasses a broad spectrum of collaborative endeavors, from the communal practices and empowerment strategies of indigenous communities to the support and exchange networks developed within the contemporary mutual aid movement. There is a rich tradition of cooperative endeavor in movements for racial and intersectional justice.

Through this initiative, undergraduate, graduate, and faculty reserach funding has been made possible by generous support from the family of Dr. U.S. Awasthi. Learn more about our most recent 2022-23 award recipients.                                                        

Call For Proposals for UCSB faculty and students will be announced in Spring 2023. 


• Central Coast Community Labor Project & UCSB LABOR SUMMER Initiative

In partnership with the Blum Center, the Central Coast Community Labor Project is offering UCSB students an opportunity to spend their summer learning about community and labor organizing by participating in UCSB LABOR SUMMER! In collaboration with the Central Coast Labor Council, students will learn about and apply organizing and research practices as paid interns at Central Coast unions and allied organizations that are working to advance labor and achieve social and economic justice.

UCSB students are encouraged to submit their application now. The application window closes on Friday, April 21st. More information, including frequently asked questions, can be found on our Labor Summer page.


People's Guide: A Series

The Blum Center believes that ensuring that information on key public issues and policies is accessible, digestible and inclusive of different viewpoints is a key condition for ensuring a healthy democracy. Our team, in consultation with community partners, will select a complex public issue or policy to break down each year to foster a broad and publicly engaged debate and collective effort to work towards a more just future. Following the first The People's Guide - A Series project on the Green New Deal, a new series-in-progress is underway:

Our Blum Center student leader team is current working on a People's Guide to UCSB's Housing Crisis. Come join us in the work. We will be sharing aspects of this guide on our social media platforms.




    • Workshops

     Applied workshops provide students with in-depth knowledge on a particular policy/issue or skill            with experts in these fields. 







• Pop-Up Discussions

Pop Ups bring together students to discuss current issues of poverty and inequality with an expert in the field. The moderated discussions provide students with a chance to ask research and professional development related questions in a small setting, and build connections with peers with similar interests. Our Public Forums highlight local action and community leaders working to advance intersectional justice on a given theme, foster public discussion about different appoaches to social change, and spotlight ways to get involved locally.

February 2022 Post Pop-Up Discussion:

Nicholas Kristof and Sheryl WuDunn's Tightrope: Americans Reaching Hope

                                                                   May 2022 Post Pop-Up Discussion:

                                                                                        Scott Ellsworth's The Ground Breaking: An American City and Its Search for Justice



 Podcast: Power to the People

The Power to the People student-led podcast features interviews with leading thinkers, activists and organizers about pressing questions shaping the lives of youth today, strategies for mobilizing their engagement, and avenues for action.



         Blum Center Recordings 

            Recordings of past events, workshops, webinars, and presentations, etc., are available here on our             YouTube channel.



• Poverty Action Days

Poverty Action Days feature Blum student-led projects on issues related to poverty, inequality and social justice often connecting Blum Centers from UC campuses across the system.