Ecology/Environment & Society
Peter Howe joined USU in 2013 as an Assistant Professor of Human-Environment Geography. His research focuses on the intersection of human perception and cognition with vulnerability and adaptation to climate change and natural hazards. This research aims to improve the ability of individuals and communities to detect and effectively respond to environmental change. Dr. Howe's research also explores how spatial relationships influence risk perceptions and decision making, using methods including survey research, spatial analysis, geovisualization, and multilevel modeling.
Prior to joining USU, Dr. Howe worked as a postdoctoral associate with the Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies in the Yale Project on Climate Change Communication. He received his PhD in Geography from Penn State University in 2012. He also holds an MS in Geography from Penn State, and a BA in Political Science and BS in Geography from Arizona State University.
Dr. Howe's recent research has examined how people perceive changes in temperature, precipitation, and extreme events at the local scale in the context of global climate change. He has also been involved in research projects focusing on local greenhouse gas emissions modeling and mitigation planning, community vulnerability assessment and planning, coastal hazard perception and mitigation among small-business owners, and water resource management. He has conducted quantitative and qualitative research across various scales and locations, including global and national-level surveys in the U.S., India, and China, and local mixed-methods research in Arizona, Florida, Maryland, and Pennsylvania.
Current projects include 1) research on the relationship between human perceptions and vulnerability to climate variability, extreme events, and climate change; 2) research on the role of experience and proximity to extreme events in risk perceptions of climate-related hazards; and 3) spatial modeling and small-area estimation of climate change perceptions, beliefs, and adaptation/mitigation behavior.