HECL PhD Candidate John Ryan McGreevy presented initial findings of his dissertation research with research assistant Elisson Adrien (Quisqueya University, Elon University alumnus) at the 30th annual Haitian Studies Association Conference in Port-au-Prince, Haiti. Through analysis of focus groups and initial interviews, they have identified factors leading to hurricane vulnerability in different subgroups of farmers in Camp Perrin, Haiti. Their presentation also highlights the network of locally-led efforts to provide emergency shelter to those who lost their homes in Hurricane Matthew. John Ryan will use surveys, in-depth interviews, and satellite image analysis to further test these findings and how they relate to the drought that immediately followed Hurricane Matthew in 2016, informing understanding of multiple disasters occurring in quick succession.
Emily Horton was selected to participate in the 2018 U.S. Borlaug Summer Institute on Global Food Security. The two-week fellowship, held at Purdue University, brought together participants from different disciplines and research countries to gain a holistic understanding of global food security challenges. This formative experience informed Emily's food security work in fisheries and her vision of co-constructing a more just, sustainable, and food secure world
Mike Coughlan and Don Nelson recently published "Influences of Native American Land Use on the Colonial Euro-American Settlement of the South Carolina Piedmont".
The article argues that localized prehistoric land use legacies likely helped
structure the long term, landscape- to regional-level ecological inheritances that resulted
from Euro-American settlement.
Open Access: https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0195036
The UGA Honors Program recently featured a story about HECLab member John McGreevy's work, you can check out their write up here.
John McGreevy and Don Nelson are co-authors on a manuscript in Food Security. It is an outcome of a series of workshops convened by the Climate Change, Agriculture and Food Security CGIAR Research Program. The paper presents set of methodological indicators to study food systems governance.
In January, Dr. Nelson was appointed to serve a three-year term on the Board of Scientific Counselors for the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. The advisory board works directly with the Office of Research and Development to offer scientific advice and recommendations on technical and management issues of EPAs research programs. He is a member of the Sustainable and Healthy Communities subcommittee. SHC research "considers the full range of interactions between people and our environment to incorporate the three pillars of sustainability—economics, society, and the environment—into a seamless research portfolio that not only helps the Agency and its partners meet today’s most pressing environmental challenges, but do so while laying the groundwork for healthy, prosperous, and just communities well into the future.
John Ryan McGreevy received the Boren Fellowship to conduct dissertation research in Haiti and study Haitian Creole, the only language spoken by the vast majority of Haiti’s rural poor. The National Security Education Program started the Boren Fellowship initiative to promote learning of lesser studied languages and to prepare Fellows for service in the United States Government. In June, John Ryan travelled to Washington D.C. for training at the Boren Awards Convocation. In the coming year, he will conduct mixed methods research on disaster vulnerability and tree use in Haiti’s Southern Peninsula, which is still recovering from Hurricane Matthew’s devastation in 2016. After degree completion, John Ryan hopes to spend his required year of government service working for the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA).
Read more about John Ryan and his work at the UGA Honors Program spotlight here (https://honors.uga.edu/news/s_p/boren/mcgreevy.html).
This publication, authored by four HECLab members explores the historical land use dynamics in the Calhoun CZO. We conducted a high spatial resolution analysis to explore land use land use transition from 1931 - 1944, during the time that the National Forest Service purchased the land. We found that factors such as topography and and market access influence land use practices and timing of abandonment. However, this relationship varies between farmers. Land tenure proves to be a critical factor in decisions to use land in particular ways. Thus, we argue that land use policy aimed at improving environmental conservation and human wellbeing must explicitly consider not only economic and topographic factors, but also, the local constraints and dynamics introduced by land tenure and property regimes.
The paper can be accessed here.
HECL Lab student John McGreevy recently presented at the University of Georgia's Symposium on Integrative Conservation. This event encourages graduate students and faculty from different disciplines to exchange ideas and help facilitate integrative approaches to future research. The presentation brings together McGreevy's research from Source Chaude, Haiti that began in 2012 and collaborative work with Elkins Voltaire (State University of Haiti) in 2016 as part of Mark Schuller’s (Northern Illinois University) NSF CAREER funded study in Haiti’s Southern Peninsula. A combination of in-depth interviews, participant observation, and remote sensing illuminate trends that question common narratives of environmental degradation in Haiti.
A video of the presentation can be seen here.
In December, Dr. Nelson gave an invited presentation on vulnerability assessment at the Seminário de Avaliação da Seca de 2010-2016 no Nordeste do Brasil (Workshop for the Evaluation of the Northeast Brazil Drought 2010 – 2016), hosted by the Ministry of Science, Technology, and Innovation, the World Bank, and the Northeast Development Bank, in Fortaleza, Brazil. The workshop brought together climatologists, hydrologists, policy makers, water managers, and one or two social scientists to talk about drought impacts and the ways in which different state bureaucracies responded. The objective was to identify best practices across the states, to identify ongoing challenges, and to develop a research agenda to respond to these challenges.
Workshop information can be found here.
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