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Land Use Patterns and Political Instability as Predictors for the Reemergence of Malaria in the Caucasus

June 25, 2018 @ 2:00 pm - 3:30 pm

The talk will be on the project that aims to investigate trends in land use in the Caucasus between 1984 and 2019 and focus specifically on the change in agriculture from rain-fed to irrigation, forest fragmentation because of overharvesting and natural causes, and changes in open surface water.
About the Speakers
Dr. Kirsten de Beurs is an associate professor in the Department of Geography and Environmental Sustainability at the University of Oklahoma. She has a background in remote sensing research with a strong understanding of the effect of institutional changes on the land surface, in particular in dryland regions. She has a Masters degree from the Wageningen University in the Netherlands focused on biometry and a Ph.D. in Natural Resources from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. Since the start of her Ph.D. in 2002 she has worked on several NASA-funded projects. For her Ph.D. she investigated the effects of the collapse of the Soviet Union on land surface changes, first in Kazakhstan and subsequently in other Central Asian states. Since starting as an assistant professor first at Virginia Tech in August 2007, and then at The University of Oklahoma, she has extended her research to agricultural drylands in the Sahel as well as agricultural regions in European Russia. She is an author on 25 manuscripts and PI on a large NASA Land Cover Land Use Change project investigating land abandonment in Russia and climate change: “Land Abandonment in Russia: Understanding Recent Trends and Assessing Future Vulnerability and Adaptation to Changing Climate and Population Dynamics”.  She has a background in studying land cover and land use change in Russia and Central Asia. She will coordinate the overall project and direct the development of the land use analysis and the malaria susceptibility maps Land Use and Malaria. She will serve as the liaison with NASA and lead the development of publications, and present results at national meetings. She will participate in fieldwork in all three years of the project.
Associate Professor Dr. A. Melkonyan is Executive Board Member of the Centre for Logistics and Traffic, University of Duisburg-Essen and a senior lecturer for the International Master Studies in Sustainable Urban Systems at the same University. She is currently coordinating a BMBF (Ministry of Research and Education) funded Project ILoNa (Innovative Logistics for Sustainable Lifestyles). Further projects, she is involved in, are Green Capital City of Europe, 2017 and NEMO (New Mobility Concepts along Emscher).
She has completed her habilitation (Venia Legendi in Environmental Sciences) about the Climate Change Influences on Agricultural Sector in developing countries. She received her PhD at the University of Duisburg-Essen, Faculty for Biology. The subject of her PhD was: “Statistical Analysis of Long-Term Air Pollution in North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany”. Her Master Thesis was about mathematical modeling in Macro- and Micro-economy, which she completed at the Yerevan State University, Faculty of Economics. Dr. Melkonyan has published more than twenty scientific publications and two monographs.
Within the frames of this study, she will be the liaison between the research team and in-country collaborators and will assist with validation data collection.
Event Venue – 308E
Event organizer – Acopian Center for the Environment


June 25, 2018
2:00 pm - 3:30 pm
Event Category:


AUA Acopian Center for the Environment