Helen Santiago Fink

Helen Santiago Fink is a climate urbanist, researcher, and consultant, based in Washington, D.C. She works at the intersection of the social, natural, and physical sciences. Her 25+ years of professional experience bring multi-disciplinary expertise in sustainable development, climate change mitigation/adaptation and resilience, urban (systems) planning, energy-efficient buildings, and community and economic development. Helen has worked at the global, national, and local scale as technical advisor and program manager for organizations such as the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), and the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE).

Helen’s publications highlight how nature-based solutions can accelerate urban sustainability and climate resilience and she is a strong proponent of the need for people-based solutions to meet climate targets. Her research explores the contextual potential of optimizing urban ecosystem services in spatial integration, governance structures, and technological applications to catalyze biophilia, environmental stewardship, and behavior change towards climate action.


Click here for Helen’s Urban Breezes blog articles

Santiago Fink, H. (2019): Promoting Nature-based Solutions for Climate Resiliency: Evolving Trajectories of Washington, DC and Puerto Rico; conference paper for the Utrecht Earth System Governance Conference, Nov. 5 – 8, 2018

McPhearson, T., Karki, M., Herzog, C., Santiago Fink, H., Abbadie, L., Kremer, P., Clark, C. M., Palmer, M. I., and Pernini, K. (2017): Urban ecosystems and biodiversity. In C. Rosenzweig, W. Solecki, P. Romero-Lankao, S. Mehrotra, S. Dhakal, and S. Ali Ibrahim (eds.), Climate Change and Cities: Second Assessment Report of the Urban Climate Change Research Network. Cambridge University Press.

Santiago Fink, H. (2016): Human-Nature for Climate Action: Nature-Based Solutions for Urban Sustainability; in: Sustainability. 8(3), 254.

Santiago Fink, H. / Kaltenegger, I. (2016): Integration of Mother Nature into Smart Buildings, in: Integration of Nature and Technology for Smart Cities, Springer.

Santiago Fink, H. / Kaltenegger, I. (2016): Vision of Cities: From the Green City to the Smart City, in: Integration of Nature and Technology for Smart Cities  Springer.

Santiago Fink, H. (2011): Promoting behavioral change towards lower energy consumption in the building sector; in: Innovation: European Journal of Social Science Research. 24, 7–26.