I am a faculty affiliate of the graduate group in Public Health at UC Merced. I’m open to co-advising students, but because I don’t have professional affiliations with the field of public health I’m not currently recruiting students as a primary advisor.
For potential Public Health graduate students, the most relevant aspects of my research concern (a) public scientific controversies, including topics such as vaccines, air pollution, and environmental justice, and/or (b) the use of computational or data-intensive methods across scientific fields. As a philosopher of science and STS (science and technology studies) scholar, I’m primarily interested in the way politics and social controversy interact with issues of expertise and knowledge production. Like any field of science, public health research doesn’t exist in a vacuum. It is influenced by its social context, and aims to have an influence on society in turn. Philosophy of science and STS give us conceptual frameworks and empirical methods for understanding these ties of mutual influence. Here are some examples of my work in these areas that are especially relevant to public health:
Between receiving my PhD and starting at UC Merced, I spent several years working as a data scientist in some science policy and academic settings. Much of my empirical work these days makes use of data-intensive or computational methods, and I regularly teach a cross-disciplinary graduate course on some fundamental data science practices. I’ve used bibliometrics, network analysis, and text mining methods in several studies in the past. I also bring the frameworks of philosophy of science and STS to data science, with papers on, for example, the replication crisis and open science in environmental public health.
- “Productivity and interdisciplinary impacts of Organized Research Units” (text mining)
- “The P value plot does not provide evidence against air pollution hazards” and “Young’s P-Value Plot as an Agnogenic Technique” (integrating technical and philosophical critique of a method used to manufacture doubt about air pollution)
- “Open science, the replication crisis, and environmental public health” (discussing the replication crisis and open science movement as they apply to environmental public health)