I am an assistant professor of Human Dimensions of Ecosystem Management in the College of Natural Resources at the University of Idaho. In 2017 I was a postdoctoral fellow with Purdue University and The Nature Conservancy’s reThink Soil Health initiative. I received a PhD in Environmental Studies from the University of Wisconsin-Madison in 2017 and a B.A. in the College of Social Studies from Wesleyan University in 2009.
I am an interdisciplinary social scientist committed to problem-oriented research on equitable environmental governance. My research group focuses on coupled human-natural systems with a particular emphasis on the nexus of water and multifunctional working lands (e.g., mixed-use watersheds that include agricultural or mining land uses). Theoretically informed by literature from public policy, environmental planning, and geography, my research is driven by the overarching questions: How and why, and with what information, do people govern resource management under climate change? And what are the social and environmental feedbacks of governance decisions? To answer these questions, I conduct mixed methods research, prioritizing co-production with communities and collaborations with scientists from other fields such as landscape ecology and climatology. This focus on team science is informed by graduate training under two grants focused on interdisciplinary team-building – NSF Water Sustainability and Climate (WSC) and Integrative Graduate Education and Research Traineeship (IGERT) programs. My data collection methods include surveys, focus groups, and experimental designs, with analysis including qualitative coding and quantitative modeling. Non-academic research partners have included soil and water conservation and public health districts, and The Nature Conservancy. I have received funding as a PI or Co-I from sources including, in the last two years, EPA, NASA, NIH, USDA, and USGS.
Before my academic career, I worked on public land acquisitions with the U.S. Department of Justice, assisted in soil and wetland conservation with the USDA-Natural Resources Conservation Service in Massachusetts, and implemented environmental practices with a U.S. Agency for International Development agriculture project in West Africa.