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Faculty contribute to the interdisciplinary Center for Sustainability and Master of Science in Sustainable Tourism in many and varied ways reflecting the multidisciplinary interest on the campus in sustainable tourism and a generous willingness to engage in the research, teaching and outreach activities of the center. Examples of these contributions include service on the MS-ST Faculty Graduate Committee, on thesis and non-thesis projects, on search committees, in recruiting and mentoring students, on external funding activities, on special projects and initiatives, in teaching core courses, on interdisciplinary research and publication efforts and on hosting visiting scholars, among others. Faculty affiliates are encouraged to cross over with other disciplines in research interests to the extent possible in order to become fully aware of, and take advantage of, the many interdisciplinary approaches and opportunities.
My recent work focuses on risk and emergency communication in coastal areas, including tourist destinations, that are affected by severe weather conditions and potential problems related to environmental concerns such as climate change and oil spills. Effective communication helps communities prepare for and cope with emergencies, disasters, and environmental change such as sea level rise. I have also worked on communication issues related to the accessibility of built environments and the impact of the Americans with Disabilities Act with the goal of improving information about the need for spaces that accommodate all people.
As a technical communicator and rhetorician, my research interests have always reflected in interest in the way that people communicate about and negotiate the challenges of inhabiting places and spaces. I'm primarily concerned with the dynamics of communication at the intersections of public and individual decision making, expert and non-expert interpretation of information, and the ways that the presentation of information helps or hinders understanding. I investigate cross-disciplinary negotiations of related texts and genres in various media and contexts.