Nicole M Herman-Mercer

Biography

I am a Research Social Scientist in the Decision Support Branch of the Integrated Information Dissemination Division of the Water Mission Area.  I began at the USGS in 2008 as a Student Intern in Support of Native American Relations (SISNAR), a program funded by the USGS Office of Tribal Relations.  As a SISNAR I completed a case study of Indigenous Observations of Climate Change in a rural Alaska Native Village in the Yukon River Basin while completing my master's degree in social science at the University of Colorado, Denver.  My work explores the interactions between different knowledge systems regarding human dimensions of landscape change and water resources in rural Alaska Native villages. Currently my focus is on the co-production of knowledge utilizing community-based and participatory methods in the Arctic and sub-Arctic to form a better understanding of environmental change and impacts on the populations of this region.  This includes implementing an extensive community-based environmental monitoring program in the Yukon-Kuskokwim Delta region of western Alaska where scientific instruments and local observations are used to produce an increased understanding of change in this region. Methods used in this work include semi-structured interviews with community experts, participatory mapping, and focus groups as well as community and K-12 classroom outreach, workshops, and community meetings.

Education:

University of Colorado, Denver             Anthropology                B.A. 2005

University of Colorado, Denver            Social Science              M.S.S. 2010