Heather Kirkland

Location of experience:
North America

Type of disaster work:
Mitigation; Recovery; Culture of emergency management; Inter-generational trauma; Diversity & inclusion

Primary Interests:
Disaster risk reduction; Marginalized populations; Inter-generational trauma; Institutional change; Issues surrounding access needs; Hazard mitigation; Diversity & inclusion; Data governance

I am a Bill Anderson Fund Fellow for Hazard Mitigation & Disaster Research and a Doctoral Candidate in Anthropology at American University in Washington D.C.

My overarching anthropological research focuses on mitigating the impacts of disasters on marginalized communities in the United States.

My dissertation involves conducting ethnographic interviews with Key force multipliers in Emergency Management. Key force multipliers encourage collaboration and information sharing among stakeholders; bring together large swaths of networks; and set the stage for dialogue and relationship building to address issues of diversity and culture. My dissertation research encourages a more nuanced perspective of diversity to include race and ethnicity as well as diversity in terms of discipline, gender, age, geographic, economic, and functional access needs. Exploring the intersectionality of these perspectives and how we operationalize diversity in the field of hazard and disaster mitigation.

I am inspired to be a part of the CADAN network because of my commitment to inter-disciplinary collaboration and strengthening partnerships between academics and practitioners.

You can find one of my recent publications on Inter-generational communication in Emergency Management here: https://training.fema.gov/hiedu/docs/generational%20perspectives%20final%205.22.17docx.pdf