As a graduate student, I have developed two main interests: quantitative spatial studies and policy analysis. I have honed skill sets in these disciplines and developed a thesis that would allow me to employ them both while working to protect local coastal waters and communities.
Water quality in Biscayne Bay is of major concern to tourism, recreation, fisheries, and other regional economic activities. My thesis focuses on water quality degradation in the Bay and potential socioeconomic impacts. As part of the NOAA Habitat Blueprint Biscayne Bay Habitat Focus Area (a multidisciplinary effort coordinated by Miami Waterkeeper and NOAA Florida Sea Grant), my task is to develop and carry out a spacial-economic analysis of fisheries and recreational water operations in the region. For my thesis, I will develop spatial-economic profiles for and describe the spatial flexibility of Biscayne Bay fisheries and recreational water operations. I will also identify water quality degradation hot spots, as perceived by industry participants. Results will indicate if fisheries and recreational operations in the Bay are vulnerable to localized water quality degradation, or if these industries have enough spatial mobility to prove resilient under localized environmental pressures.
For more information, please visit the Biscayne Bay Economic & Spatial Study website.