RWJF Health & Society Scholar:
Area(s) of Expertise:
Global Health, Program Evaluation, Environmental Health, Social Networks
Katherine “Katie” Dickinson is an environmental economist who studies how humans behave in the face of environmental risks. Her research topics have included sanitation behaviors in India, malaria-related decisionmaking in Tanzania, willingness to pay for mosquito control in Wisconsin and Florida, and homeowners’ wildfire mitigation choices in Colorado. Across these diverse topics, Katie has examined how people perceive different environmental risks and what costs and benefits people consider in deciding how to respond to those risks. She is particularly interested in how neighbors and social contacts influence a person’s own choices. Katie is excited about the prospect of working more closely with natural and physical scientists on projects that build an integrated understanding of the ways that human actions and environmental processes interact. A newly funded project on clean cookstoves and their air quality and health impacts in Ghana is a prime example of this kind of interdisciplinary research.Katie received Bachelor and Master of Science degrees from Stanford University, and a Ph.D. from Duke University’s Nicholas School of the Environment. She was a Robert Wood Johnson Health and Society Scholar at the University of Wisconsin before joining NCAR in 2010 as a Postdoctoral Fellow with support from the Advanced Study Program and the Integrated Sciences Program.