meet our team members
Our interdisciplinary project team includes faculty, graduate, and undergraduate students from Political Science, Anthropology, Ecology, and Natural Resources from Purdue University and Northwestern University.
Dr. Kimberly Marion Suiseeya is an Assistant Professor of Environmental Justice and Community Resilience in the Department of Political Science at Purdue University. Her research examines the interactions between norms, institutions, and justice in global forest governance. Her areas of expertise include: environmental justice, global environmental governance, political ecology, and the politics of biodiversity conservation in Laos and mainland Southeast Asia.
Dr. Laura Zanotti is an associate professor in the Department of Anthropology at Purdue University. She is is an environmental anthropologist and interdisciplinary social scientist whose research program partners with communities to better understand how local, mostly rural, livelihoods and well-being can be sustained for future generations. Her areas of expertise include: feminist political ecology, space and place, decolonizing and collaborative methodologies, digital anthropology, communities and conservation.
Sarah Huang is a graduate student studying cultural anthropology at Purdue University. Her research examines the perceptions of 'local food' with immigrant and refugee communities in Anchorage, Alaska. Her research interests focus on food justice, food security, transnational migration, immigration and citizenship. Sarah is part of both the COP21 and WCC research teams.
Elizabeth Wulbrecht is a graduate student in political science at Purdue University, studying the representation of marginalized groups in a policy setting. Her focus concerns mental health policy and the stigma that surrounds the mentally ill. Currently, Elizabeth is apart of both the COP21 and WCC research teams.
Kate Yeater is an undergraduate senior studying anthropology at Purdue University. She has worked on the Presence to Influence team as a Wilke Research Scholar, research assistant, and now as a member of the World Conservation Congress team. Kate’s research interests include tropical forest conservation, indigenous rights, and the impacts of development on traditional livelihoods. Kate is part of the WCC research team and has worked as a Research Assistant for the larger project.
Kate Haapala is a Master’s student studying Political Science and Ecological Sciences and Engineering at Purdue University. Her research focuses on how entrenched resource allocation and equity norms in global environmental governance transcend scales to impact fishing communities in Alaska. Her research interests focus on rights-based approaches to conservation, equity norms within global environmental governance, and community vulnerability. Kate is a member of the WCC team and has worked as a Research Assistant on the larger project.
Savannah’s research focuses on the impact of global environmental governance and conservation initiatives and polices on indigenous forest people in southwestern Uganda. More specifically, her PhD work investigates the ways that displaced Batwa communities have renegotiated their cultural identities and relationships with the forest and gorillas in response to global conservation governance and local management practices in Bwindi Impenetrable National Park (BINP) and nearby region. Savannah is a member of the WCC team.
Fernando Tormos is a PhD candidate in Political Science at Purdue University with a specialization in social movements and the politics of social groups. Specifically, his research is interested in how transnational social movements overcome internal divisions and gain political influence over global decision-making processes. His work focuses on labor, environmental, human rights, and student movements. Tormos also helps coordinate the Diversity and Inclusion in Social Movements research team at Purdue, which studies the challenges and consequences of building solidarity across social group differences. Fernando is part of the COP21 research team.
Suraya Williams is an undergraduate studying Ecology, Evolution, and Environmental Biology at Purdue University. She also has a minor in Environmental Policy and Politics. Suraya’s research interests are conservation ecology, climate change, international environmental policy, and environmental governance. She is participating in the COP21 ethnography. Soraya is part of the COP21 research team.