Human Dimensions of Change Laboratory

Request Info
Dealing with daily impermanence is coastal peoples acknowledged way of life. They watch their waters undergoing sea changes beyond their control, and accept that the ocean yields riches and just as readily as strips them away. Coastal people interact within the ecological context of constant political, economic, environmental and social climates of change. The last radical El Niño event in 1997-98 fostered immense boom-and-bust cycles in fisheries that people had to navigate in terms of decision-making and fisheries management.

Through fieldwork in multiple sites up the Latino Pacific coast, scientists in the Human Dimensions of Change Laboratory use empathic ethnography to examine lives of these coastal people in the midst of climates of change. Living in fishing villages from Galapagos to Patagonia, the scientists interview villagers and their leaders, as well as the urban industrial fleet managers and workers in processing plants, to understand decision-making and management from the various perspectives of the different competing and allied interest groups.

Contact Information

Sarah K. Meltzoff, Ph.D.
Associate Professor
Phone: (305) 421-4087