Thursday, November 18, 2010

One way political science-types spend their summers: research on water scarcity in Jordan

One of the best changes at Saint Michael's College in the last two years has been a huge surge in the support for undergraduate research.  During summer 2010 one of our majors, Connor Stewart ('11) and I were able to use a Provost Research Grant that Connor competed for in to support a trip to Jordan to study water scarcity and its impact on refugee populations there  We were lucky that Siham Elhamoumi ('06), who is fluent in Arabic, agreed to go with us, and we more than two wonderful weeks in Jordan learning about Jordan in general, and water and refugee issues in particular.

When we returned home, Connor began work on a paper, but we quickly decided that we'd like to collaborate on one together.  So, that's what we did.  The result, with a suitably political science-ish title, "The Politics of Water Scarcity among Refugee Communities in Jordan" was accepted to be presented at the Northeastern Political Science Association Annual Meeting in Boston.  Last weekend we drove down to Boston and delivered the paper as part of a panel on global environmental politics  The trip also gave us a chance to see Amanda Brule, a graduate of our program who is now in her third year of a PhD program at U Mass Amherst.  And of course, we had to meet up with Siham, who lives in Boston and works with a global health organization, Management Sciences for Health, there.

It was a great start to a longer project, a book on the Millennium Development Goals, on which Connor and I are both participating. I've included a few photos, one from the conference and three from our trip to Jordan.  Two of the Jordan ones are from our trip to the refugee camp, and the third is an example of the legendary hospitality of the country of Jordan -- here we are having dinner out with our friend Khaled. We're grateful to the College, and especially the Vice President for Academic Affair's Office for the support that made our work and trip possible.

No comments:

Post a Comment