Visiting Associates

Visiting Associates

Launched in 2015 as Visiting Fellows, our awards bring new knowledge and fresh perspectives to the University of Arizona (UA) campus and our local communities.

Anna Waple and Juanita Sundberg, the inaugural Haury Visiting Fellows, brought new points of view and deep experience to the University of Arizona during the spring semester of 2015.

Anne Waple spent four weeks working with the Center for Climate Adaptation Science and Solutions (CCASS), which also provides funding for her visit. Dr. Waple is Vice President and Chief Innovation Officer at Second Nature, a non-profit network which supports over 600 colleges in the development of sustainability and climate goals. Her work at UA centered on working with campus and Tucson communities to increase regional resilience to impacts from climate change. In addition to individual and small meetings, she presented a lecture in April, “Exploring Climate Resilience.” Post-visit collaborations continue and expand.

Political ecology is the study of relationships between political, economic and social factors with environmental issues and changes. Juanita Sundberg researches political ecology using “the insights of feminist geography and the sensibilities of an ethnographer to bear on nature conservation, border security, and militarization.” The daughter of missionaries, she learned about human-land relations - personal knowledge that serves as the foundation of her professional research. Her Haury Visiting Fellow project, Democracy on the Line: The Political Ecology of Legal Suspension in U.S. Southern Boundary Enforcement, examines the legal framework in which the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) can waive all laws in order to build border walls, roads, and other infrastructure. The DHS Secretary has invoked the waiver five times, waiving thirty-six laws in 2008 to build border infrastructure in Texas, New Mexico, Arizona, and California. US lawmakers continue to introduce legislation to make these waivers permanent, including a recent effort by Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) and Rep. Matt Salmon (R-Ariz.). For more about this work, follow Dr. Sundberg’s blog.

Mika Galilee-Belfer, received funding for Haury Visiting Associateships in July 2016, as the Director of Strategic Planning and Special Projects for UA’s College of Social and Behavioral Sciences (SBS). Galilee-Belfer used the award to host two visiting associates to participate in the SBS conference, “Food and Water in Arid Lands: Dialogues Across Contemporary and Traditional Knowledge” and extend this participation to interaction with colleagues and around the state on an extended visit. Fellows Dr. Andrew Mushita, who works with the Community Technology Development Trust in Zimbabwe and studies seed exchange, biopiracy, small-scale farms, and seed trusts, and Dr. Alejandro Argumedo, who is affiliated with ANDES and Potato Park and whose work involves the protection and development of Andean biological and cultural diversity and the rights of indigenous peoples of Peru, shared their expertise about traditional food systems. Mushita served as a panelist in a session entitled “Traditional Knowledge and Food Systems” while Argumedo participated in the panel on “Traditional Knowledge in a Time of Climate Change” to provide information on global practices that may positively affect policies, practices, communication, advocacy, and education in Southwestern Arizona. Along with UA faculty, community partners, and tribal nations members, Mushita and Argumedo engaged in discussions addressing sustainable approaches to food and water rights, security, sovereignty, intellectual property, and social justice in a time of climate change. The SBS premiered the video "Food, Water and Traditional Knowledge" at the conference. To learn more about conference sessions, themes, and next steps, read the post-conference report here.

Katie Meehan received a Faculty Associateship Award in July 2016. Meehan is a Professor in the Department of Geography at the University of Oregon. Her project, “Sustainable Urban Transitions in the Southwest: Water Infrastructure and Social Justice in the Mexico-U.S. Borderlands,” seeks to advance critical understanding of urban sustainability and social justice in the Southwest borderlands, through collaboration with UA academics and engagement with experiential learning and curriculum development at rainwater harvesting sites in school gardens in Tucson, Arizona. Meehan worked directly with the Community and School Garden Program (CSGP) to develop science curriculum on water harvesting, infrastructure, and storytelling in urban environments. Also, Meehan co-authored a publication with UA faculty members, Jeff Banister and Stacie Widdifield, evaluating modes of spatial planning and water infrastructure in Southwest cities and participated in a lecture organized by the UA Southwest Center and School of Geography and Development. With this project, Meehan advanced understanding of urban transition through analysis of water infrastructure plans, policies, and practices in Southwest cities.

Virginia Grise received a Haury Visiting Associateship Award in January 2017. Grise, the recipient of a Yale Drama Prize, is a fast-rising Chicana playwright with impact nationally and abroad. She aims to increase the diversity of voices in discussions of environmental issues and planning. She collaborated with The University of Arizona English Department and Borderlands Theater to workshop the script of Their Dogs Came With Them (an adaptation of Helena Maria Viramontes' novel) with community members whose experiences inform the lives of the play’s characters, incorporating their feedback into the play. The novel focuses on the effects of destructive urban planning in Los Angeles in the 1960s upon a Mexican-American community. Grise documented this new process that engages community and creates opportunities to share stories. Her work resonates with urbanization patterns in Tucson and across the Southwest.

Tracy Perkins, Assistant Professor in the Department of Sociology and Criminology at Howard University, received a Haury Visiting Associateship Award in January 2018. Perkin's project, "Ward Valley and the Fight to Protect Tribal Lands" examines a largely undocumented anti-nuclear waste landfill campaign that took place in the Mojave Desert's Ward Valley from the late 1980s to the late 1990s.  "My experience with the Haury Program", said Perkins, "was a rich one. I am hopeful that the relationships that I built this spring will result in future collaborations". The project highlights the role of Native Americans in the US environmental justice movement and will help educators teach students about the inextricably linked nature of social justice and environmental concerns. "I hope this work contributes to the next generation's sense of pride in the accomplishments of those that came before them, and in doing so, increase their own sense of being able to make change in the world", said Perkins.  

For each award, the Agnese Nelms Haury Program in Environment and Social Justice provides a one-time grant of up to $20,000, exclusively for researchers, scholars or non-academic professionals outside the Southern Arizona area. Grants are awarded to support service work, research or advocacy, always in collaboration with UA colleagues and/or Southwest communities.

The Haury Program accepts applications for Visiting Associates each fall as funds are available. Awards may be granted to support a wide range of projects or activities, including workshops and presentations on the UA campus, research working with local scholars or resources and more.

The Haury Program will accept applications for new Visiting Associates in fall 2018.

[This program is not affiliated with the Laboratory of Tree-Ring Research's Agnese N. Haury Visiting Scholar & Trainee Fellowship.]

Learn more:
Answers to questions we've received regarding Visiting Associates.