Belize swidden research
NSF CAREER: Analyzing the Emergence of a Complex Swidden Management System in the Toledo District, Belize (NSF#1818597, NSF#1553875)
The goal of this project is to advance our understanding of the dynamics and emergence of coupled human and natural systems through a multi-year study of the swidden agriculture of Q’eqchi’ Maya farmers in southern Belize. The project analyzes the ecological effects of swidden from the perspective of landscape ecology, social networks, and common pool resources using information from southern Belize including forest plots, social networks, and experimental data.
- In order to understand landscape-scale outcomes, we are collecting and analyzing high-resolution multi-spectral spatial data using high-performance drones.
- To understand how social norms relate to common-property resource management we are using methods from behavioral economics and game theory.
- We are working with collaborators in Belize to host talks on campus (“Imagining and enacting Indigenous futures: diversity and the challenge of inclusion”).
- To analyze how non-linear dynamics affect the swidden management system we are using computational modeling.
Indonesian Language and Genetics
The lab participates in a long-term collaboration with Stephen J. Lansing, Murray Cox, Peter Norquest (and many others) related to ongoing analyses of the language and genetics of Indonesian. The primary contribution of the lab relates to the application of computational methods (alineR, see Software) for analyzing historical linguistic data (Swadesh word lists).
A multi-scale integrated approach to historical linguistic and demographic reconstruction in Nusa Tenggara, Indonesia (2010-2014; NSF#1030031: $199,782)
Doctoral Dissertation Improvement Grant: Socio-ecological analysis and modeling of Q’eqchi’ Maya Milpa Agriculture in Toledo District, Belize (2007-2009; NSF#0647832; $15,000)