Where are you situated as COVID-19 plays out? What backstories shape your engagement with COVID-19? How can you be contacted? What questions and settings are you especially interested in following?


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Maka Suarez's picture
April 27, 2020

I'm a co-founder of Kaleidos - Center for Interdisciplinary Ethnography, a space for academic experimentations supported by two top ranked universities in Ecuador (University of Cuenca and FLACSO-Ecuador). We are located in Cuenca, where I am assistant professor of medical anthropology. Together with a team of researchers we have been tracking covid19 with a specific focus on Latin America through Spanish language podcasts, collective texts, webinars, and online forums.

My current ethnographic interest is on documenting data distrust networks from the neighborhood scale to the national level in Ecuador, and how these networks have produced distinctive approaches (and failures) to the current pandemic.

Thomas De Pree's picture
April 24, 2020

I am situated in Albuquerque, New Mexico in the U.S. Southwest. I have a background conducting multi-locale ethnographic research on the politics of cleaning up uranium mine waste and mill tailings in northwestern New Mexico. I am now concerned about how abandoned mine lands (AMLs) and other decaying toxic infrastructures of settler colonial extraction and development compound environmental health risks and impacts in Native American communities. How has COVID-19 unfolded in the Navajo Nation (Dinétah)? What pre-existing environmetnal health vulnerabilities have exacerbated the impact of COVID-19? How can we forge culturally appropriate pathways of resilience in response to the initial impact of the pandemic?

Ina Kim's picture
April 23, 2020

I am a Ph.D. candidate in anthropology at the University of California, Irvine. I am working on my doctoral dissertation that explores post-disaster ecological imaginary shaped and performed through data practices in post-Fukushima Japan. My project examines how data practices of citizen radiation detection activities construct and reconfigure the understanding and experience of citizen scientists regarding post-Fukushima “Japan” as part of the ecosystem.  For further projects, I am also interested in the sociocultural role of small data in the era of big data and how small data that represent and intervene in environmental issues are intersected and interacted with big data in various domains. 

I am currently participating in the Transnational Disaster STS COVID-19 project and the COVID-19 and Data group as a subgroup of the project above. As a member of these groups, I am unraveling COVID-19 data practices and the relationships among multiple data actors such as the government, research institutions, media, and citizen scientists in Japan. I am also interested in how differently citizen data platforms have been gaining scientific and political authorities in Japan, the U.S., and South Korea during the pandemic.

I am particularly interested in these questions: 

  • What do different disciplines and communities involved in COVID-19 response mean by “good data”?

  • How do local, national, and global data intersect, interact, and compete with each other? 

  • What is shown and what is revealed or disregarded in COVID-19 data produced about different settings (a particular city, region, or country, for example)?

  • How are COVID-19 GIS data integrated with other data forms? What is the role of the GIS data in different COVID-19 settings?

  • What is the role of civic data as COVID-19 information in comparison to governmental or institutional data?

  • What do people expect from data within the COVID-19 pandemic? 

  • How is the data circulated for COVID-19 different from data produced in another pandemic period?

I can be contacted at inahk[at]uci.edu.

Rodolfo Hernandez's picture
April 22, 2020

Context: Currently, I´m based in Bogota, Colombia´s capital city of 8 million people. At the beginning of March, the government informed about the first COVID-19 case in the country, a young woman who came back from a trip to Italy. The 19th, with less than 30 confirmed cases, Bogota declared a provisional and pedagogical quarantine for a weekend. Around a dozen of cities followed Bogota´s initiative, living with few choices the central government to take a different approach. On March 23 the President declared national state of emergency, and extending a national quarantine, with few exceptions (medical staff, public servants, police and military forces, inner city transportation, among others). After a month under quarantine we have witnessed a strong support to the central government, a national coordination approach few times seen in the country. Political opposition forces and the Congress have been behind the scenes. News networks have displayed an enourmous time to medical, epidemiological, health and scientific experts. President and local leaders speak to the public nearby or citing experts from top scientific institutions. Epidemiological models are shaping decisions about when to go out, who can go out, and how normal life can be retake.

Analytical approach: I am analyzing how COVID-19 governance is taking place in Colombia, through the participation of scientific experts. I am concerned about how scientific data and information are displayed and communicated, focusing on health and epidemiological issues. I am interested in foolowing how other researchers analyze data platforms, transparency issues, and the articulation between health safety and inequality and economic impact.

Contact: awx1111@gmail.com

April 22, 2020

I teach anthropology and environmental studies at Haveford College, just outside of Philly. Currently, I'm holed up in a cabin in the Adirondacks in upstate New York with several family members, including my spouse and 4 year old daughter and 3 dogs. I started working on disasters by accident, when one day in 2001 I was walking to class at NYU and saw the World Trade Center buildings on flames. I have known Kim for a few year and I contacted her to connect with folks around Covid-19 and its imacts.

I'm particularly intersted in issues of communal grief, mourning, and bereavement. Also, I'm interested in the religious response to Covid-19.

Stefan Laser's picture
April 21, 2020

I'm staying at home these days, that is, in Erfurt, set in Eastern Germany. My commute to the Ruhr University – roughly 400 km to the west – thus has been put to a hold. I have a background in waste studies, while also becoming increasingly interested in matters of energy production. I’d like to understand how pollution affects bodies, but also how the reactions to the pandemic are changing the way pollution is discussed and experienced. You can contact me via mail: stefan.laser@rub.de

I'm particularly interested in the following questions:

How is COVID-19 impacting and intersecting with air pollution?

What data infrastructure -- in different settings, at different scales -- supports efforts to understand and respond to COVID-19?

What COVID-19 data visualizations are in circulation and to what effect?

How does COVID-19 impact the civil rights of unsheltered populations and challenge ideas of what a healthy environment is?

alli.morgan's picture
April 19, 2020

I'm currently based in Troy, NY where I recently completed a PhD in Science and Technology Studies.  I'll soon be living in NYC to attend medical school. I can be reached at amorgan14[at]gmail[dot]com

I've long been interested in the disaster of routine medical care in the U.S. healthcare system. As far as COVID-19 is concerned, I'm particularly interested in how the long-term health impacts of intensive care are conceptualized and communicated (including Post Intensive Care Syndrome (PICS)) and the tensions between acute and chronic illness, broadly. 

How is the aftermath of COVID-19 crisis being imagined in different settings? How is this shaping beliefs, practices, and policies?

Nadine Tanio's picture
April 9, 2020

I live in Glendale, CA. I completed by PhD at UCLA in the Graduate School of Education in 2020. I am interested in collaborative, visual, and experitmental research methods. My dissertation used youth participatory action research (YPAR) to examine children's health knowledge of the chronic illness and organ (heart) transplantation. I am interested in how COVID-19 impacts youth educational experiences and reinforces educational disparities. 

I can reached at ntanio[at]gmail[dot]com

I am especially interested in:

How are K-12 schools (primary and secondary schools) responding to the COVID-19 pandemic, what kind of support have they been given, what problems have emerged, and how are these problems being tracked and responded to?

How are universities responding to the COVID-19 pandemic, what kind of support have they been given, what problems have emerged, and how are these problems being tracked and responded to?

April 7, 2020

I am currently in the process of transitioning my M.A. level course on Science, Technology, and Development with 11 students to virtual instruction. One of my interests in engaging with COVID-19 is to examine how it (should) informs development ideologies and practices. How should students of development studies retool -- conceptually, methodologically, practically -- in wake of the pandemic?

April 4, 2020

I live in the bay area in Northern California and am a PhD Candidate in the Department of Anthropology at UC Irvine. My research has focused on shifting data ideologies in Nairobi, Kenya where I lived and worked from 2010 - 2015 and 2019. Learn more hereI can be reached at angela[dot]okune[at]gmail[dot]com.

I am especially interested in the following questions: