More Collaborative Research

February 7, 2018

Last week my faculty let the Dean know what they think about my performance as chair. The assessment was generally positive and constructive. Overall they think I’m doing well. That makes me feel good. I believe in my faculty and in what we are doing. Moving forward I’m committed to giving them the resources to be successful academics and to model the way for them to become the leaders of tomorrow at Florida State University and beyond.

When I started as chair three years ago, my goal was for the department to become more diverse and inclusive. Today we have a wonderful group of energetic young faculty (with three more on the way next year!) and graduate students with a range of backgrounds and experiences. So it’s a pleasure to come to work every day and spend time working to promote and improve what we do as a diverse and inclusive department.

A goal for next term is to foster more collaborative research. Faculty and students alike will benefit from working with scholars across the physical and human sides of the discipline. My own research on the tornado hazard will link the physics of casualties with the narratives of people in place. To paraphrase Gary Morson & Morton Schapiro (Cents & Sensibility), I believe geography can supplement the quantitative rigor, the focus on policy, and the logics of the environment, economy and health with the empathy, judgement and wisdom that defines the humanities at their best. We have the right people at the right time. Let’s make it happen.