In many areas of the developing world, including many countries in Sub-Saharan Africa, access to safe drinking water for households strongly influences efforts to alleviate poverty through mechanisms such as time poverty and exposure to waterborne diseases. A changing climate is expected to cause significant disruptions in global water supply, with reductions of varying severity expected for much of Sub-Saharan Africa in particular. This proposed study entails using evidence from historical climate variability in Sub-Saharan Africa and spatially explicit household survey data to examine how changing freshwater availability can be expected to affect drinking water access and quality in Sub-Saharan African under future climate change. Given that urbanization can potentially result in increased proximity to potable water sources and hence decreased water fetching time, the study will also include an analysis of whether the trend of increasing urbanization in Sub-Saharan Africa may partially offset the negative effects of climate change on water access. Results from this study will be useful in informing design of development interventions and projects in the context of a changing climate, especially interventions related to water delivery and access and management of integrated water systems.
Alex is a PhD candidate at the Friedman School of Nutrition Science and Policy studying Agriculture, Food, and Environment. He expects to complete his studies in May 2023. Before coming to Tufts, Alex earned a B.S. and a M.S. in Environmental Science from Brigham Young University. After earning his Master's Degree, Alex worked for two years in northern Haiti as a fellow with the non-profit organization Meds & Food for Kids (MFK), a producer of ready-to-use therapeutic food (RUTF) and other products for treating malnutrition. At MFK, Alex was the agricultural program coordinator where he managed a peanut agricultural research grant. He then spent one year as the director of the Centre d'Agriculture Saint Barnabas (CASB), an Episcopal agricultural technical college in Terrier-Rouge, Haiti. Alex also spent 4 years as a Haitian Creole instructor at Brigham Young University. Aside from pursuing his own studies, Alex has also worked with the Center of International Environment and Resource Policy (CIERP) on climate policy documents at Tufts.
Current Studies and Future Goals
When asked what he found most meaningful about his field of study, Alex responded with the following: "Agriculture is inextricably linked with issues such as alleviation of rural and urban poverty, environmental degradation, deforestation, soil erosion, water management, and climate change. I am interested in the intersection of natural and human systems and how human societies can minimize negative anthropogenic impacts on ecosystems. I am also interested in sustainable development and in environmental justice issues, especially as they relate to the developing world and the North-South dichotomy. The Agriculture, Food, and Environment program at the Friedman School combines all of these elements together, enabling me to pursue research that can have a positive impact on both human societies in the developing world and natural ecosystems"
Alex plans to pursue a career in international agriculture development or international environment with a UN-affiliated or other multilateral development organization once he completes his studies at Tufts. He would like to work in research, program or project design, or project management and oversight. Alex is also considering a research career at an academic institution, private research think tank, or major non-profit organization. Regardless of where he ends up, Alex hopes to have his research to have applied and field components, where he will be working and interchanging directly with populations affected by environmental change on the ground.
When not doing school work Alex can be found hiking and backpacking, or snowshoeing when it's cold. He also enjoys running, walking, and exploring new places. He is also an avid traveler and enjoys meeting and interacting with the people of the place he's visiting and learning about local culture. Alex enjoys learning new languages, and speaks Haitian Creole, French, and Antillean Creole fluently. He also plays the piano and organ.
Favorite Place You've Visited: Dominica
Favorite Course Taken at Tufts: Development Economics
Dream Job: Country/Regional Director at an International Environment Organization