Doctoral Student ALLISON KOCH
Research Interests: Political ecology; tropical forest ecology; conservation; traditional environmental knowledge; small-scale agriculture; ethnobotany; and medical anthropology.
Advisor: Michael Cepek
Degrees: B.A. Anthropology; B.A. Latin American and Caribbean Studies
Dissertation/Thesis Topic: I am interested in exploring the relationships between biological research stations and local communities. My research will take place on Isla Colón, Bocas del Toro, Panama at the Institute for Tropical Ecology and Conservation (ITEC) and with the surrounding community in Boca del Drago. The area is dense tropical rainforest, and it attracts many ecology students and researchers. How such tourists are received, how ecological knowledge is shared between ITEC and nearby residents, and how the local culture has been transformed since the station was established in 1997 are all topics of great interest.