Assistant Professor of Anthropology
Cultural Anthropology, Southeast Asian Area Studies, Anthropological Research Methods, Medical Anthropology, Sustainable Development, Cultural Anthropology Seminar, Belize: Tropical Ethnobotany
I specialize in environmental anthropology, with an emphasis on household food security as it relates to national and global economic pressures. I conducted my dissertation research in Vietnam, where I studied differential livelihood vulnerability created by national economic reform in a small coastal village in the Mekong Delta. Using qualitative and quantitative field methods, I investigated the linkages between governmental policies encouraging shrimp aquaculture and access to the resources needed by members of the local community to construct viable and sustainable livelihoods. I have also conducted ethnographic research on private landowners’ decision making about conservation in the Southern Appalachian Mountains and tree ring analysis of the environmental history of western North Carolina. Most recently, I assisted a year-long research project concerned with food security, social capital, and mountain microclimates on the border of Uganda and Kenya.
In collaboration with a colleague in the Environmental Studies discipline here at Eckerd College, I am continuing my work on food security and socio-ecological resilience by studying subsistence fishers in Tampa Bay, an understudied and potentially vulnerable population. We are interested in the pressure this group of fishers puts on marine resources, communication of information between this population and policymakers, and the ways in which this group is physically, economically, and culturally marginalized. Sited locally, we have an exciting opportunity to conduct our research year round, training student research assistants and drawing on the expertise of community members
2016 “Shrimp Aquaculture, Social Capital, and Food Security in Rural Vietnam,” Culture, Agriculture, Food & Environment 38(2), 113-122.
2013 “Aquaculture and Debt: Undermining Sustainability in the Mekong Delta,” with H.A. Vu, in Growing Sustainable Communities: A Development Guide for Southeast Asia. Prahran, Australia: Tilde University Press.
2012 “Coping with Golden Forests and Blue Revolutions: Livelihoods Vulnerability in the Mekong Delta, Vietnam,” Ph.D. Dissertation, Department of Anthropology, University of Georgia.