The University of Arizona

Melinda Butterworth | Global Change

Melinda Butterworth

Research Interests: 

I am a health geographer working on issues of disease, climate, and public health. My PhD major is Geography (advised by Andrew Comrie) and minor is global change (advised by Kacey Ernst and Tracey Osborne). My dissertation revolves around the central theme of climate change and dengue fever in the southern US. I am interested in connections between climate and the dengue vector and virus, as well as the social dimensions of dengue outbreaks. I am currently examining the recent dengue outbreak in Key West, Florida to better understand the types of human-environment factors that may make some locations in the southern US more vulnerable to dengue. I am also researching connections between climate, society, and dengue emergence in southern Arizona.  Informed by a political ecology of health perspective, my research draws upon mix of quantitative (dynamic mosquito modeling, household surveys) and qualitative (semi-structured interviews, observation) methods. My dissertation research is supported by a NSF Doctoral Dissertation Research Improvement Award, the Climate Assessment for the Southwest, the AAG Human Dimensions of Global Change Specialty Group, the UA Institute of the Environment, and the UA Social and Behavioral Sciences Research Institute. 

Major: 
Geography
PHD Major Advisor: 
Comrie
GC Minor Advisor(s): 
Osborne / Ernst