Politics Faculty

Ruth Langridge
  • Title
    • Researcher, Continuing Lecturer
  • Division Social Sciences Division
  • Department
    • Politics Department
    • Legal Studies
  • Phone
  • Email
  • Website
  • Office Location
    • Crown College Faculty Wing, Room 228
    • Crown College, Room 228
  • Mail Stop Merrill/Crown Faculty Services
  • Mailing Address
    • 1156 High Street
    • Santa Cruz California 95064
  • Faculty Areas of Expertise Environmental Policy, Legal Studies, Water, Natural Resource Management, Climate Change
  • Courses LGST/POLI 132 California Water Law and Policy, LGST 196 Senior Capstone, LGST 159 Property and the Law, LGST 131 Natural Resources Law and Policy, ENVS/LGST 149 Environmental Law and Policy, POLI 174 Global Environmental Politics, LGST 134 - Seminar in Property Rights and Natural resources

Summary of Expertise

Drought, Groundwater and Climate Change
Water Law and Policy
Natural Resources Law and Policy
Water Governance
Native American Natural Resources Law and Policy
Environmental Law and Policy
Property and Natural Resources

Research Interests

My research centers on water law and policy, natural resources law and policy, environmental governance and institutional change. Current research focuses on water supply security and climate change, drought management, groundwater policy, water governance, linkages between access to water and resilience to water scarcity, and habitat protection and the law.

Biography, Education and Training

University of California, Berkeley
Department of Environmental Science, Policy and Management (ESPM)

Oregon State University
College of Forestry, Department of Forest Resources.

Harvard University, Graduate School of Education

Honors, Awards and Grants

PI - California Strategic Growth Council Grant (2020-2022) Local Development Under Climate Change

PI - NSF EAGER Grant (2019-2021) Comparative Analysis of Institutions to Govern the Groundwater Commons

PI - California Strategic Growth Council Grant (2018-2020)  Integrating Land Use and Climate Change on California's Central Coast

PI - NSF Research Grant 2017-2018  Science Policy Report: A Synthesis of Available Information and analysis of Knowledge Gaps to Advance Groundwater Security Under Drought

Lead Author - Central Coast Regional Report for California's 4th Climate Assessment 2017-2018

PI - State Water Resources Control Board; Haynes Foundation; and UC Water Security Grants 2015-16 "An Evaluation of California's Adjudicated Groundwater Basins" and "An Evaluation of California's Special Act Groundwater Districts"

EPA Climate Leadership Award 2016 Presented to the CA Department of Water Resources sinngling out the work of the Climate Change Technical Advisory Committee

Participant, California's Third Assessment on Climate Change

California Department of Water Resources Climate Change Technical Advisory Committee 2012 – 2015

PI - California Energy Commission Research Grant (2010)

PI - NOAA Research Grants (2010 and 2013)

Water Resources Center Grant (2007)

Faculty Fellowship Award (2003)

Baker Bidwell Fellowship (2002) (UCB)

Water Resources Center Research Grant 2000 (UCB)

Outstanding Graduate Student Instructor Award 2003 (UCB)

Selected Publications



Langridge, Ruth and Nathan D. Van Schmidt, 2020, Groundwater and Drought Resilience in the SGMA Era, Society and Natural Resources Journal, https://doi.org/10.1080/08941920.2020.1801923


Wilson, Tamara Sue, Nathan D Van Schmidt, Ruth Langridge, 2020, Land-Use Change and Future Water Demand in California's Central Coast, Land Systems and Global Change. https://www.mdpi.com/2073-445X/9/9/322/pdf


Langridge, Ruth and Fencl, Amanda, 2020. Implications of Climate Change to Groundwater. In: Goldstein, M.I., DellaSala, D.A. (Eds.), Encyclopedia of the World's Biomes, vol. 4. Elsevier, pp. 438–453. https://doi.org/10.1016/B978-0-12-409548-9.12021-4. https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/B9780124095489120214


Langridge, Ruth and Christopher Ansell. 2018. Comparative Analysis of Institutions to Govern the Groundwater Commons in California, Water Alternatives, Vol. 11, Issue 3, pp.375-404. http://www.water-alternatives.org/index.php/alldoc/articles/vol11/v11issue3/450-a11-3-3/file

Langridge, Ruth. 2018. Central Coast Summary Report. California’s Fourth Climate Assessment. Publication number: SUM-CCCA4-2018-006. http://www.climateassessment.ca.gov/regions/


Langridge, Ruth, Stephen Sepaniak, Amanda Fencl, Linda Esteli Mendez Barrientos. Management of Groundwater and Drought Under Climate Change. A Report for California’s Fourth Climate Assessment. 2018. http://www.climateassessment.ca.gov/techreports/docs/20180827-Water_CCCA4-EXT-2018-006.pdf.


Langridge, Ruth and Bruce Daniels. 2017. Accounting for Climate Change and Drought In Implementing Sustainable Groundwater Management, Water Resources Management 

31: 3287. https://doi.org/10.1007/s11269-017-1607-8

Rudestam, Kirsten, Ruth Langridge and Abigail Brown. 2017 “Exploring “Deep Roots:” Politics of Place and Groundwater Management Practices in the Pajaro Valley California, Society and Natural Resources, Vol. 31, Iss. 3, 2018

Langridge, Ruth, S. Sepaniak and E. Conrad. 2016. An Evaluation of California’s Special Act Groundwater Districts, State Water Resources Control Board Report, https://escholarship.org/uc/item/3cr8k66v

Langridge, Ruth, A. Brown, K. Rudestam and Esther Conrad. 2016. An Evaluation of California’s Adjudicated Groundwater Basins, State Water Resources Control Board Report http://www.waterboards.ca.gov/water_issues/programs/gmp/docs/resources/swrcb_012816.pdf

Brown, Abigail, R. Langridge and K. Rudestam. 2016. “Coming to the Table: A Critical Analysis of Collaborative Governance in Groundwater Decision-making in Coastal California,” Journal of Environmental Planning and Management, Online at: http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/09640568.2015.1130690

Rudestam, Kirsten, R. Langridge and A. Brown. 2015. “The Commons as a dynamic variable in understanding strategic alliances of scale: a groundwater case study in Pajaro Valley, California,” Environmental Science and Policy, pp. 33-40, DOI10.1016/j.envsci.2015.05.003

               DWR Climate Change Technical Advisory Committee. 2015. “Climate Change Technical Advisory Group Perspectives and Guidance for Climate Change Analysis.”   http://www.water.ca.gov/climatechange/docs/2015/Perspectives_Guidance_Climate_Change_Analysis.pdf

Lund, Jay, T. Harter, R. Gailey, G. Fogg, R. Frank, H. Dahlke, T. Ginn, S. Solis, T. Young, A. Fisher, R. Langridge, J. Viers, T. Harmon, P. Holden, A. Keller, M. Kiparsky, T. Greene, S. Mehl, J. Gurdak, S.. Gorelick, R. Knight. 2015. “Creating effective groundwater sustainability plans,” http://californiawaterblog.com

Rudestam, Kirsten and Ruth Langridge. 2014. “Sustainable Yield in Groundwater Management: Bridging Science and Mainstream Vernacular,” Ground Water DOI: 10.1111/gwat.12160

Fisher, A., G. Fogg, J. Viers, J. Lund, R. Langridge, P. Holder. 2013. “Groundwater and Climate Change in California, GroundWaterBlog, http://californiawaterblog.com/2013/10/09/groundwater-and-climate-change-in-california/

Langridge, Ruth, A. Fisher, A. Racz, B. Daniels, K. Rudestam, and B. Hihara. 2012. Climate Change and Water Supply Security: Reconfiguring Groundwater Management to Reduce Drought Vulnerability. California Energy Commission. CEC-500-2012-017.    http://www.energy.ca.gov/2012publications/CEC-500-2012-017/CEC-500-2012-017.pdf

Paper for California’s 3rd Climate Change Vulnerability Assessment

Langridge, Ruth. 2012. “Drought and Groundwater: Legal Hurdles to Establishing Groundwater Drought Reserves in California” Environs: Environmental Law and Policy Journal, Vol.36:1 environs.law.ucdavis.edu/issues/36/1/Langridge.pdf

Summary Report on the Third Assessment from the California Climate Change Center. 2012.

               “Our Changing Climate: Vulnerability and Adaptation to the Increasing Risks from Climate Change in California,” http://www.gci.org.uk/Documents/California_Future_Climate.pdf

Moser, S., J. Ekstrom and R. Langridge. 2011. Barriers to Adaptation. In Pierce, D. W., Ed., 2011, California climate extremes workshop report. Scripps Institution of Oceanography: La Jolla, California


Langridge, Ruth. 2011. “When Do Challengers Succeed? Non-government Actors, Administrative Agencies and Legal Change: Shifting Rules for Oregon’s Private Forestlands,” American Bar Foundation, J. of Law and Social Inquiry. Vol. 36 #3, http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/j.1747-4469.2011.01246.x/full

Langridge, Ruth. 2010. “Global Institutions and Water Governance,” invited chapter in A History of Water Series 2, Volume 3: Water, Geopolitics and the New World Order London/NY:IB Tauris

Langridge, Ruth. 2009. “Confronting Drought: Water supply planning and the establishment of a strategic groundwater reserve. ”University of Denver Water Law Review, Vol.12:2


Langridge, Ruth. 2008. “The Right to Habitat Protection” Public Land and Resources Law Review, Vol. 29:42-62

Langridge, Ruth. 2008. “Developing global institutions for governing water” Book Review, Ken Conca, Governing Water: Contentious Transnational Politics and Global Institution Building, Journal of International Affairs 61.2 Columbia University .Spring-Summer. and Encyclopedia Brittanica, http://www.britannica.com

Langridge, Ruth, J. Christian-Smith, K. Lohse. 2006.  “Access and Resilience: Analyzing the Construction of Social Resilience to the Threat of Water Scarcity,” Ecology and Society, 11 .2.: 18

Langridge, Ruth. 2002. “Shifting Legal Regimes and the Allocation of Water Between Two Northern California Watersheds, Natural Resources Law Journal, 42, 238 – 330, 2002

Woodward, George, Jeff Romm, and Ruth Langridge. 2001. “Policy impacts of the Klamath decision,” in Water Allocation in the Klamath Basin: An Assessment of Natural Resource, Economic, Social and Institutional Issues, joint publication of Oregon State University and the University of California


Selected Presentations



Langridge, Ruth. 2018. Highlights from California’s Central Coast Regional Report for California’s 4th Climate Change Assessment. San Luis Obispo-Santa Cruz CA


Langridge, Ruth. 2018. Highlights from California’s Central Coast Regional Report for California’s 4th Climate Change Assessment. California Adaptation Forum. Sacramento CA


Langridge, Ruth. 2017.  “Managing Groundwater in California: Evaluating Special Act Districts and Court Adjudications,” Groundwater Resources Association Law Conference, Sacramento CA

Langridge, Ruth. 2017.  “Managing Groundwater to Reduce Vulnerability to Drought,” Groundwater Resources Association Annual Conference, Sacramento CA

 Langridge, Ruth. 2017. “Institutional Approaches to Manage Groundwater in California:Evaluating Special Act Districts and Court Adjudications, ”Invited Speaker, UC Davis Hydrology Seminar Series, Davis, CA

Langridge, Ruth. 2017. Organizing committee and oral presentation, “Recipes for Success” conference, Davis CA, highlighting “successful” water management in the state;

Langridge, Ruth. 2016. Oral presentation, Groundwater Resources Association 25th annual meeting and conference, Groundwater Supply, Quality and Sustainability: The Challenges Ahead, in Concord, CA;

Langridge, Ruth. 2016. “Adjudicated Basins and Water Transfers,” Closing Keynote Speaker for American Groundwater Trust and Groundwater Resources Association Conference, Water markets and California water solutions, Sacramento, CA

Langridge, Ruth. 2016. “Managing California’s Adjudicated Groundwater Basins,” Invited Speaker, UC Santa Barbara, CA and Stanford University, CA

Langridge, Ruth. 2015. “California’s Adjudicated Groundwater Basins: History, Current Conditions, Potential Reforms,” oral presentation, American Geophysical Union .AGU. Conference, San Francisco

John R Gyakum, B. N Austin, D. C Curtis, M. Anderson, H. Alpert, S. Young, A. Herson, A. Schwartz, ML Kavvas, Ruth Langridge, E. Lynn, J.e Anderson, K. T Redmond, D. R Cayan1, M. D Dettinger, and M. Correa .2015. “Producing Scientific and Strategic Guidance for California's Department of Water Resources: The Climate Change Technical Advisory Group,” poster presentation, American Geophysical Union .AGU. conference, San Francisco


Langridge, Ruth. 2014. “Drought, Climate Science and Water Policy,” invited panelist, Bay Delta Science Conference, Sacramento CA 

Langridge, Ruth. 2014. “Accounting for Climate Change and Drought in Sustainable Groundwater Management,” Groundwater Resources Association conference

Langridge, Ruth. 2014. U. C. Drought Summit, Invited Speaker, Sacramento, California

Langridge, Ruth. 2014. “Groundwater and the Interconnected Climate-Water-Social System” Invited Opening Keynote Speaker for the University of California, Davis, Groundwater Symposium

Langridge, Ruth. 2013. “Climate Change and Water Supply Security: Managing Groundwater to Increase Drought Resilience,” NOAA Webinar Series: Climate Information for Managing Risks In Water Resources

Langridge, Ruth. 2013. “Groundwater and Climate Change” Invited Speaker, SWRCB Water Quality Coordinating Committee, Sacramento, California

Langridge, Ruth. 2013. “Governing Groundwater” Invited Speaker, California State Board of Food and Agriculture, Sacramento, California

Langridge, Ruth. 2013. “Climate Change and Water Supply Security: Managing Groundwater to Increase Drought Resilience” California Department of Water Resources Climate Change Technical Advisory Committee, Sacramento, California

Langridge, Ruth. 2012. “Climate Change and Water Supply Security: Managing Groundwater to Increase Drought Resilience,” Association for Environmental Studies and Sciences Annual Conference, Santa Clara University, Santa Clara, California, Panel Chair and Presenter

Langridge, Ruth. 2011. “Legal hurdles to developing local groundwater drought reserves." Groundwater Resources Association, Sacramento California, Presenter

Susi Moser with Stephanie Pincetl, Ruth Langridge, Julia Ekstrom, Amy Luers, Scripps Institution of Oceanography - Robert Paine Scripps Forum .2011. Vulnerability and Adaptation to Extreme Events in California in the Context of a Changing Climate: New Scientific Findings, “Barriers to Climate Change Adaptation in California: Why Technical Solutions Are Not Enough,”

Langridge, Ruth. 2010. “Climate Change and Sustainable Groundwater Management” Groundwater Resources Association International Conference, 2010, Burlingame, California, Presenter

Langridge, Ruth. 2010. “Climate Change and Water Supply Security” Fall meeting, American Geophysical Union, San Francisco, California, Presenter


Teaching Interests

California Water Law and Policy
Natural Resources Law and Policy
Environmental Law
Environmental Governance