Nature-based solutions have been introduced as an alternative approach to traditional coastal infrastructure. While traditional coastal infrastructure typically involves concrete or rock seawalls, bulkheads, and other rigid structures, nature-based solutions incorporate natural features like oysters or beach sand to achieve living shorelines, beach nourishment, and marsh restoration. These natural approaches to coastal protection offer an increased value-proposition over traditional infrastructure due to their self-repairing capabilities, among other benefits. Despite this, traditional infrastructure remains more popular. To better understand this failure to change, we address gaps in existing literature by conducting a comparative analysis of successful projects involving nature-based solutions. Through this analysis, we will identify common characteristics and themes in successful projects. Project information will be derived from planning documents, reports, academic articles, and interviews. To facilitate this analysis, we have constructed a logic model using planning frameworks provided by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers’ landmark 2021 International Guidelines on Natural and Nature-Based Features (NNBF) for Flood Risk Management as a basis. These frameworks identify key inputs, planning practices, programmatic procedures, environmental influences, and other characteristics essential to successful projects. We have identified 12 cases of completed projects involving nature-based solutions along the United States coastline. We conducted a comparative cross analysis of these projects to identify common factors associated with success and obstacles overcome. The results of this study will inform future planners about what makes project success more likely.
Department Public Policy
Sponsor The Nature Conservancy
Advisor Dr. Youtie and Dr. Hicks
Primary Email Contact
Table # Y16


Name Major Hometown
Archa Amin PubP Lilburn, Georgia
Emily Chesser PubP Carrollton, Georgia
Hanka Kirby PubP Cumming, Georgia
Hyunjin Angelina Kim PubP Marietta, Georgia
Jack DellaPenna PubP Canton, Georgia
Lisa Medford PubP Decatur, Georgia