Graduate Student Affiliates

Christine Anhalt-Depies (Forest and Wildlife Ecology)

Christine studies the social dynamics of public participation in scientific research. Her dissertation is focused on how different models for citizen science influence public understanding of and engagement with natural resources. She is part of an interdisciplinary research team examining Snapshot Wisconsin.

Ian Carillo (Sociology)

Ian is completing his dissertation, “Fire, Families, and Farmworkers: Changes in Power and Opportunity in the Cane Fields.”

Nithin Charlly (Pediatrics)

Nithin is a medical student within the UW School of Medicine and Public Health’s Department of Pediatrics. He is currently working with Professor Megan Moreno, investigating how social media, technology and medicine interact to influence adolescent health.  Nithin is interested by the intersection of technology and medicine and was a 2019 recipient of a Shapiro Summer Research Award.

Amy Gaeta (English)

Amy Gaeta is a PhD candidate in English and takes a transdisciplinary approach to studying the relationship between technology, emotions, and transnational U.S. politics and culture. Her dissertation examines the global spread of drone technology through feminist approaches to disability and technology. Amy is interested in how technologies mediate the circulation of emotions and determine the value of human and nonhuman bodies.

David Greenwood-Sanchez (Political Science)

David researches the politics of genetically modified crops in Latin America, using Mexico and Peru as case studies. In his dissertation research, he adopts a state-oriented perspective, particularly the ways in which states mediate conflicting pressures from interest groups and civil society, while attempting to secure strategic positions within global agricultural markets. His work utilizes interviews, legislative debates, newspapers and other secondary sources, and original survey data.

Alexandra Lakind (Curriculum & Instruction, Environment & Resources)

Alexandra is interested in cooperative environments that moderate pressures  from the market-driven society. She is currently focused on human/environmental futures, arts integration, qualitative methods, and educational pedagogy. Her aim is to recognize and support infrastructure to provide platforms to multiple voices across categories. Through implicit and explicit, academic and performative routes, she hopes to foster supportive communities prepared to process unanswerable dilemmas together.

Emma Lundberg (Nelson Institute for Environmental Studies)

Emma is a PhD student in the Nelson Institute’s Environment and Resources program. Her dissertation research focuses on identifying and deconstructing settler logics that permeate through natural resource management. To do this, she uses social and ecological research methods to investigate the interactions among beaver and salmonid species and controversies over their management in Northeastern Wisconsin.

Siddarth Menon’s (Geography)

Siddarth Menon‘s research examines the growing use of concrete for house construction in India and the environmental, economic, and social impacts of the same. He is conducting an ethnography of concrete as a construction material in Kerala, following concrete (and its components) through the construction process of a house in suburban Kochi. This will highlight the myriad connections between people, things, and landscapes that are facilitated through concrete’s expanding mesh.

Eric Nost (Geography)

Eric research investigates how technology – from interactive webmaps to sediment diversions and  environmental modelling tools – shapes how regulators, non-profit conservationist groups, and the private sector design and evaluate ecological restoration and climate adaptation projects. He is currently looking at efforts to plan coastal restoration in Louisiana following decades of land loss, work that gets at questions about nature’s (economic) value; the intransigence and resilience of ecosystems; technology’s mediation of science and policy; the purpose of environmental law and the pursuit of environmental justice.

Simarjeet Puri (Pediatrics)

Simarjeet is a medial student within the Department of Pediatrics at the University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health. He is a member of Professor Elizabeth Petty’s research group, specializing in Genetics and Metabolism. Simar was awarded a Shapiro Summer Research Award in 2019.

Jules Reynolds (Geography & Nelson Institute for Environmental Studies)

Jules Reynolds is a joint PhD student in the Department of Geography and the Nelson Institute for Environmental Studies. Her research examines the politics and practices of climate change in Malawi, particularly how climate change knowledge politics affect local agricultural adaptation strategies. Jules applies political ecology, STS, and feminist theory frameworks to address these questions.

Ajay Singh (Pediatrics)

MD/PhD student, Ajay Singh, is currently working with Professor Megan Moreno on several projects that intersect science, new technologies, and society. The projects include understanding the impact of COVID19 on the usage and acceptance of telemedicine, determining the relationship between alcohol addiction and internet addiction in the young adult population, and establishing the relationship between the age of acquisition of a smart phone and mental health outcomes in the adolescent population.

Aaron Suiter (Nelson Institute for Environmental Studies)

Aaron is a second-year student in the Nelson Institute’s Environment and Resources program using the theoretical frameworks of feminist/postcolonial geography, STS, and urban political ecology to study the practice of urban forestry in North America. Aaron is critically examining the metrics used by urban tree-planting and carbon-crediting programs: how they are constructed, and how they mediate planners’, foresters’, and urban residents’ relationships with urban trees and their senses of environmental crises. His study is based on an examination of the software suite i-Tree, which is the product of the US Department of Forestry. This software package converts cities’ tree inventories into bundles of ecosystem services—especially carbon savings—and values these ecosystem services in dollars. While i-Tree typically presents trees as unquestionably good (a symptom of widespread arborocentrism), he argues that the technocratic consensus on the value of urban trees prevents honest discussions of their value to urban communities and the world at large. Arguments in favor of afforestation point to carbon and dollar savings, but he examines how estimates of these savings minimize and obscure the true costs of maintaining urban forests.

Kase Wheatley (Community and Environmental Sociology & Agroecology)

Kase Wheatley is pursuing his master’s degree in Agroecology. He is very interested in supporting farmers to transition to agroecological cropping systems like agroforestry and Integrated Crop-Livestock systems. Kase is eager to hear farmers tell their own stories and to understand the social dynamics that affect adaption to these agroecological systems. Kase attended UC Davis for his undergraduate studies, where he studied alternative agriculture and anthropology and then farmed for a few years before coming to Madison. Kase is passionate about science & speculative fiction, cooperatives, and meaningful relationships.

RECENT GRADUATES

Nick Lally (Geography)

Nick is a a geographer, artist, and computer programmer with research interests in software studies, social movements, visual epistemology, spatial theory, feminist thought, and contemporary philosophy. My work describes the role of software in constructing the world through its material entanglement with social, political, and economic systems.

Robert Lundberg (Environment & Resources, Law)

Robert uses photography as an artistic research method to investigate sites of interaction between human structures–such as roads and dams–and natural landscapes. In addition to the aesthetic interaction that the photos mediate, he uses the images to consider the legal and sociocultural infrastructure which is physically manifest in the built infrastructure.  He is interested in how these structures enshrine our understanding of and relationship to the natural spaces they inhabit.

Chloe Wardropper (Environmental Studies)

Chloe studies how data collection and use influence perceptions, functioning, and outcomes of environmental governance programs. Her dissertation is focused on the use of modeled and monitored water quality and precipitation data by agricultural conservation managers in the Upper Mississippi River Basin, in traditional and market-based programs.

Kaitlin Stack Whitney (Entomology)

Kaitlin studies insect conservation and ecosystem services across managed landscapes. She’s interested in critical animal studies, phenomenology, risk assessment, and how valuing and studying insects affects policy.