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Home > Events > Job Talk - International Water and Food Security:  Performance Evaluation and Assessment of Research Needs


Job Talk - International Water and Food Security:  Performance Evaluation and Assessment of Research Needs

When Feb 29, 2016
from 10:15 AM to 11:15 AM
Where 125 Reber Building, University Park, PA 16802
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Water and food security remain the top development challenges of the decade, and perhaps the century. In recent decades, billions of people have obtained access to more food, better nutrition, improved water, and basic sanitation facilities worldwide. The past twenty years have also seen the largest population growth on record, the highest rates of childhood mortality, and climate effects including drought and shifting rainfall that have caused widespread food shortages and death. The current efforts to provide basic human needs including water and food provisioning are not sufficient to end the widespread water related deaths and chronic hunger issues.

The research presented herein focuses on understanding previously implemented water, sanitation, and food security development programs, as well as current research for development efforts relating to the Water-Food-Energy Nexus. This work begins with an analysis of limitations to previously implemented projects in Kenya and Vietnam, then moves on to a discussion of how the science and engineering behind ethical decision making can influence competing interest for water resources. These findings suggest that careful attention should be paid to how organizations define and monitor program success. Additionally, this work articulates the value of bridging disciplines by presenting an example of leveraging decision-making and program evaluation through social network analysis. Finally, future work is presented that will contribute to the understanding of decision-making related to competing water resources.

About the Speaker

Dr. Caitlin Grady is currently an Oak Ridge Institute for Science and Education Fellow working for the Department of Energy in Washington, D.C. Over the past year, Dr. Grady completed a Women’s Policy Inc. Fellowship and was hired as a Legislative Assistant managing water, food, and energy policy issues for Congresswoman Betty McCollum (MN-04). Previously, she received her bachelor’s degree from Virginia Tech and her master’s and doctoral degree from Purdue University in the Agricultural and Biological Engineering Department and School of Civil Engineering, respectively. During her doctoral study, she received Purdue’s Most Outstanding Interdisciplinary Project Award. She supported her doctoral research through multiple fellowships and grants including the National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship and the Borlaug Global Food Security Research Fellowship. Dr. Grady’s research interests revolve around the transdisciplinary nature of water resources, particularly within the water, energy, and food security international development community.