Heidi Hausermann, Ph.D., Assistant Professor (On Leave)
Biography: Heidi Hausermann is a geographer advancing studies of political ecology and agrarian change. Her expertise is in land-use change, livelihoods, environmental governance, critical health geographies and mixed methods. Heidi's work explores the conditions under which landscapes change, including underlying political-economic and power dynamics. She then examines how the socio-environmental ramifications of land-use change, including health dynamics, are experienced unevenly among rural people. Thus, her overarching project is always about social justice as she seeks to understand how the burdens and benefits of agrarian change vary among different groups of people.
Heidi currently directs three projects in Ghana. Since 2010, she has studied the expansion of unregulated alluvial gold mining on the banks of the Offin River. Combining remote sensing and ethnography, the project queries the spatial extent and political dimensions of mining as well as health and livelihood implications. Another long-term project tracks the diverse treatment regimes enacted in rural areas for Buruli ulcer, a necrotizing skin infection. And a recently launched project studies emergent ecologies resulting from Bui Dam and human health implications. Heidi's research is forged through transdisciplinary science and international collaboration and has been funded by Fulbright, National Science Foundation, Fulbright-Hays, and the Office for Global Advancement for International Affairs.