Christine M. Rodrigue, Ph.D.

Research Interests


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Much of my research over the last 25 years has focussed on hazards. Dominant themes in this work are projects on how risk assessment science interacts with risk management policy, the processes by which media shape public hazards perception, and equity issues in the social response to disaster. These three themes are summarized in a paper I gave at the World Association of Disaster and Emergency Medicine International Education and Training Working Group meeting in Brussels in October 2004, "Hazard Vulnerability, Media Construction of Disaster, and Risk Management." This hazards work led me to an invited NASA teleconference, at which I presented guidelines for risk communication for the Mars program. This eventually led me into developing a course on the geography of Mars, a multivariate statistical laboratory using Mars geochemical data, a project on the geography of Mars, and developing a network of Mars geographers. The Mars activity is currently expressed in a research project collating and analyzing all APXS data from all four martian rovers and classifying all targets in a common geochemical format, which in a simpler version was replicable by students in my Mars class. I am also engaged in various hazards projects with Dr. Eugenie Rovai. Situated in an education-centered institution, assessment and fostering student research have become significant portions of my research activity. An expanding focus in my research over the last fifteen years is biogeography, especially concerning the threatened California sage scrub, formulation of a floristic key for the Palos Verdes Peninsula, and analyzing Project PigeonWatch data collected by my students since 2000.
    •   Internet and hazards perception
    •   Internet and Cassini
    •   Mars
    •   September 11th
    •   Palæoclimatology
    •   Disaster by management
    •   Northridge Earthquake
    •   Chaparral fire
    •   California sage scrub
    •   Project PigeonWatch
    •   1998 El Niño floods
    •   Water allocation in drought
    •   Neolithization
    •   Education-related research

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One emphasis in my research is the relationship between risk assessment and risk management and, more broadly, between science and policy. I am increasingly interested in the communications within an organization concerning risk, which extends my earlier interest in communications between the public or activists in the public with organizations having risk management responsibilities. I have compared the risk assessment communications within large Federal agencies and their interactions with the risk perceptions of managers making risk containment decisions. The specific case studies are NASA and the Columbia accident, the FBI and 9/11, and now FEMA and Katrina/Rita. My long-time collaborator, Dr. Eugenie Rovai, and I have been working to apply the "disaster by management" framework to her project on the emerging risk of international drug cartels using National Forest lands to grow marijuana, in order to circumvent heightened border security.

E. Rovai and C.M. Rodrigue. 2009.
Marijuana cultivation in National Forests and Parks, environmental impacts, and policy failure: Disaster by management. Paper presented to the Western Social Science Association, Albuquerque (April).

C.M. Rodrigue and E. Rovai, with the assistance of J. Waligorski. 2008.
Disaster by management: Marijuana cultivation in National Forests and Parks. Paper presented to the Association of American Geographers, Boston (April).
C.M. Rodrigue and E. Rovai, with the assistance of J. Waligorski. 2008.
Marijuana cultivation in National Forests and Parks: American market, post-9/11 border securitization, and global in-sourcing of production. Panel presentation to the Association of American Geographers, Boston (April).

E. Rovai and C.M. Rodrigue. 2007.
Disaster by management: International drug cartels and the North State National Forest lands. Paper presented to the National Social Science Association, Cabo San Lucas (October).

C.M. Rodrigue. 2006.
Katrina/Rita and risk communication within FEMA. Paper presented to the Association of American Geographers, Chicago (March).

C.M. Rodrigue. 2004.
Disaster by Management: Managerialism and normal accident theory in the Columbia accident and FBI Headquarters' response to field office concerns before 9/11. Paper presented to the 29th Annual Hazards Research and Applications Workshop, Boulder, CO (11 July).

C.M. Rodrigue. 2004.
Disaster by Management: The Columbia Accident and September 11th. Paper presented to the "Hazards and Disasters: Management and Mitigation" special session sponsored by the Hazards Specialty Group at the Association of American Geographers, Philadelphia (17 March).

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By the late 1990s and early 2000's, I became especially interested in how the advent of Internet media has altered the communication of hazards debates. Hazard assessment experts and activists both have trouble getting their messages to the public through traditional print and broadcast media, which have very high costs of entry and are dominated by interests with very different agendas than experts' and activists'. The Internet has a very low cost of entry and has begun to displace or augment traditional media as a source of information. All facets of the Internet are not equal, however, in the efficiency with which they allow experts and, especially, activists to access the public. The web and now social networking sites are the glamorous part of the 'Net, but it is limited as a communications channel by its reliance on an active audience, one actually searching for information on a given topic. The most effective dissemination of information through space and time seems to take place through channels with less need for an actively searching audience: e-mail, Twitter, listservers, Google Group discussion groups, and chats.

C.M. Rodrigue. 2002.
Media and hazards: Different constructions of public perception by conventional media and the Internet. Panel remarks presented to the "Media and Hazards" panel, Association of American Geographers, Los Angeles (22 March).

C.M. Rodrigue. 2001.
Impact of Internet media in risk debates: The controversies over the Cassini-Huygens Mission and the Anaheim Hills, California, landslide. The Australian Journal of Emergency Management 16, 1 (Autumn): 53-61.

C.M. Rodrigue. 2001.
Construction of hazard perception and activism on the Internet:: Amplifying trivial risks and obfuscating serious ones. Natural Hazards Research Working Paper 106.

C.M. Rodrigue. 2001.
The Internet in risk communication and hazards activism. Invited presentation for a panel on "The Media, The Internet, and Disasters," 26th Hazards Research and Applications Workshop, Boulder, CO (July).

C.M. Rodrigue. 2001.
The Internet in the social amplification and attenuation of risk. Invited poster, 26th Hazards Research and Applications Workshop, Boulder, CO (July).

C.M. Rodrigue. 2001.
Construction of hazard perception and activism on the Internet. Presentation to the Association of American Geographers, New York (February).

C.M. Rodrigue. 2000.
The use of the Internet and web-based technology for space and geoscience (mis)education: New media in natural and technological hazard debates. Presentation to the fall meeting of the American Geophysical Union, San Francisco (December).

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A specific project dominating my work in the late 1990s and early 2000s focussed on the controversy over the plutonium dioxide aboard the Cassini-Huygens mission to Saturn and Titan. Opponents to the spacecraft's configuration held that plutonium is the most dangerous substance on Earth and could be released into Earth's environment during launch or during an Earth swingby. NASA countered that the risk of a mishap was below 1 in a million and that the consequences of the worst-case scenario would entail the development of approximately 120 additional individual cases of cancer worldwide. This controversy reflects the contentious relationship between risk assessment science and risk management policy, as well as most of the themes developed in prior technological hazards perception literature. This relationship has, if anything, become even more contentious in an era in which the epistemological validity of science is itself under interrogation. This case study explores the evolving relationship between risk assessment and risk management in the Internet era by bringing media criticism to bear on Internet hazard representation and by documenting the recruitment of proponent and opponent activists into this technological risk debate. Parts of these projects are summarized in papers I presented to the Boulder Hazards Workshop, the AAAS, and in a grant proposal:

C.M. Rodrigue. 2001.
Internet media in technological risk amplification: Plutonium on board the Cassini-Huygens spacecraft. Risk: Health, Safety & Environment 12, 3/4 (Fall): 221-254.

C.M. Rodrigue. 2000.
Public perception and hazard policy construction when experts and activists clash in the media. Presentation to the 25th Annual Hazard Research and Applications Workshop, Boulder, CO (July).

C.M. Rodrigue. 2000.
Internet recruitment and activism in constructing technological risk. Presentation to the American Association for the Advancement of Science meeting, Washington, DC (February).

C.M. Rodrigue. 1999.
Public, expert, and activist perceptions of the plutonium on board the Cassini-Huygens mission. Presentation to the American Association for the Advancement of Science meeting, Anaheim, CA (January).

C.M. Rodrigue. 1999.
Social construction of technological hazard: Plutonium on board the Cassini-Huygens spacecraft. Narrative for a proposal submitted to the Decision, Risk, and Management Science Program National Science Foundation (14 January).

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In 2001, my work on the controversy over Cassini-Huygens led to a project on the controversies beginning to develop over the Mars Sample Return mission, which was then being designed and proposed for possible launch between 2011 and 2014. Because the final design was expected to incorporate plutonium dioxide RTGs for power needs on this extended mission, the same opposition was expected to develop. In addition to the plutonium issue, another axis of controversy started to develop: concern about "back contamination," that is, of Martian microbes hitching a ride back to Earth on board the return craft. A third line of controversy developed within the scientific community, too: between geoscientists and bioscientists over the quarantine and distribution of the Mars rock and soil samples. I was invited to a NASA teleconference to present my work on the Cassini controversy to a NASA audience for the first time and to discuss risk communication and public involvement for the Mars Sample Return. At that teleconference, I was invited to follow the MSRL controversy. While preparing the physical science background on Mars to follow the controversy, the MSRL was repeatedly delayed and then moved to indefinite status and finally off the list of planned missions (though it may be re-authorized). Rather than forget my work on Mars, I decided to share this background with my students in the form of a special topics course on "Areography: A Regional Geography of Mars," taught in Spring 2007. This work has led to several geographic education presentations, a lab exercise for my multivariate statistical methods course, a new research collaboration applying statistics to terrestrial palæoclimate data, and a book-length characterization of the geography of Mars, since incorporated as readings for the Mars class. It also led to the establishment of the Mars Geography Network, bringing together several dozen geographers who do Mars-related work. Our first face-to-face panel was held at the AAG in 2009. The geography of Mars class, meanwhile, has since developed into a regular catalogue course in the Geography curriculum at CSULB, GEOG 441/541! It was taught in Spring 2012, Spring 2014, Spring 2015, Spring 2016, Spring 2018, and Fall 2019. Development of materials for the class led to a major project integrating all APXS data from all four martian rovers (through Fall 2016) in a common database, its standardization, and then use of K-means clustering to create a fifteen-cluster categorization of all APXS targets, which itself yielded four or five metaclusters. This was used as the basis for a student experiment in using K-means clustering to pick out four clusters, which accorded with the metaclusters I had found.
C.M. Rodrigue. 2020.
K-means clustering of Mars rovers' APXS data, 1997-2016. Invited presentation to the OpenPlanetary Virtual Lunches series (12 May).
C.M. Rodrigue. 2020.
K-means clustering and mapping of all four rovers APXS oxide and element relative abundance data. Presentation to the Lunar and Planetary Science Conference, The Woodlands, TX. The face-to-face meeting was cancelled due to COVID-19, but e-posters were made available on the conference web site.
C.M. Rodrigue. 2020.
K-means clustering and mapping of all four rovers APXS oxide and element relative abundance data. Refereed extended abstract, Lunar and Planetary Science Conference 51: 1262. The face-to-face meeting was cancelled due to COVID-19, but extended abstracts are available from the conference proceedings.
C.M. Rodrigue. 2020.
Richness and equitability measures applied to a K-means classification of all four Mars rovers' APXS oxides and elements data. Presentation to the Lunar and Planetary Science Conference, The Woodlands, TX. The face-to-face meeting was cancelled due to COVID-19, but e-posters were made available on the conference web site.
C.M. Rodrigue. 2020.
Richness and equitability measures applied to a K-means classification of all four Mars rovers' APXS oxides and elements data. Refereed extended abstract, Lunar and Planetary Science Conference 51: 1607. The face-to-face meeting was cancelled due to COVID-19, but extended abstracts are available from the conference proceedings.
A.G. Siwabessy, C.M. Rodrigue, and R.C. Anderson. 2020.
Remanent magnetization signatures in Terra Cimmeria and Terra Sirenum. Refereed extended abstract, Lunar and Planetary Science Conference 51: 1996. The face-to-face meeting was cancelled due to COVID-19, but extended abstracts are available from the conference proceedings.
A.G. Siwabessy, C.M. Rodrigue, and R.C. Anderson. 2020.
Geological map of Terra Cimmeria, Mars. Refereed extended abstract, Lunar and Planetary Science Conference 51: 2766. The face-to-face meeting was cancelled due to COVID-19, but extended abstracts are available from the conference proceedings.
C.M. Rodrigue. 2018.
K-means clustering of Mars rover APXS oxide and element abundance data and mapping of classified targets in Google Earth. Evolving manuscript available at https://home.csulb.edu/~rodrigue/mars/apxs/GE/.
H. Hargitai, E. Cañón, and C.M. Rodrigue. 2015.
Landform classification and characterization. In Encyclopedia of Planetary Landforms. Ed. Henrik Hargitai and Ákos Kereszturi. New York: Springer-Verlag.
C.M. Rodrigue. 2015.
Geography on Mars. Invited presentation, Los Angeles Geographical Society (March).
C.M. Rodrigue. 2014.
Geography of Mars. Invited presentation, California Map Society, Long Beach, CA (November).
C.M. Rodrigue. 2013.
Geographers on Mars. Association of Pacific Coast Geographers, Lake Tahoe, CA (September).

C.M. Rodrigue. 2011.
Use of geochemistry data collected by the Mars Exploration Rover Spirit in Gusev Crater to teach geomorphic zonation through principal components analysis. Journal of Geoscience Education 59, 4 (November): 184-193. doi: 10.5408/1.3604826.

C.M. Rodrigue. 2011.
Nearest neighbor analysis, regression, and secondary crater prospecting on Mars". Lunar and Planetary Science Conference, The Woodlands, TX (March).

C.M. Rodrigue. 2010.
Detection of secondary craters to improve martian surface regionalization through the crater size-frequency distribution. Association of American Geographers, Washington, D.C. (April).

C.M. Rodrigue. 2009.
Orders of relief and the regional geography of Mars. Association of American Geographers, Las Vegas (March).

C.M. Rodrigue. 2009.
From a hazards project to the regional geography of Mars. Mars Geography Network special session, Association of American Geographers, Las Vegas (March).

C.M. Rodrigue. 2007.
Mars in the geography classroom. Association of Pacific Coast Geographers, Long Beach (October) (also listed in the geoscience education section below)

C.M. Rodrigue. 2007.
Boldly going where no geographer has gone before: The Martian classroom. Los Angeles Geographic Society, Los Angeles (September) (also listed in the geoscience education section below)

C.M. Rodrigue. 2002.
Emerging risk assessment and management controversies in the Mars Sample Return. Poster presented to the 27th Annual Hazards Research and Applications Workshop, Boulder, CO (14-17 July).

C.M. Rodrigue. 2001.
Risk representation in the space program: The Internet and the social amplification of risk. NASA Teleconference among NASA Headquarters, Jet Propulsion Lab, Ames Research Center, and Johnson Space Center (27 November, from JPL).

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I incorporated Mars geochemical data in a principal components lab for my GEOG 400 course in multivariate statistics. A Geological Sciences graduate student in the class, Ms. Carlye Peterson, developed her individual lab project around the use of PCA to process six different palæoclimate proxies taken from cores in the Santa Barbara Basin, extending back to about 33,000 years ago. She, her advisor (Dr. Richard Behl), and I worked further with these data and Ms. Peterson presented initial results at the 2008 American Geophysical Union.

Carlye D. Peterson; Richard J. Behl; Christine M. Rodrigue; Cathleen M. Zeleski; and Tessa M. Hill. 2008.
Statistical relationships among proxies of climate, productivity and the carbon cycle across climatic regimes, Santa Barbara Basin, California. American Geophysical Union, San Francisco (December)

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Soon after the tragedy of 11 September 2001, the Natural Hazards Center at the University of Colorado, Boulder, put out a call to the hazards research community to submit NSF Quick Response grant proposals to study the event and make our findings available to the disaster managers and terrorism research community. I agreed to do a literature content analysis of one newspaper, selecting the online edition of the Los Angeles Times. A progress report on the first six weeks of coverage was presented as part of a panel at an NSF-funded conference in New York, followed by a published abstract. The Quick Response Report covers the full twelve week period of the grant project and the Special Publication anthology extends the analysis to include photographic imagery.
C.M. Rodrigue. 2004.
El Niño and 9/11 Quick Response Research Projects. Panel presentation to the Quick Response Research and Scholarship in Geography panel, sponsored by the Hazards, Qualitative Methods, and Environmental Perception and Behavior specialty groups, Association of American Geographers, Philadelphia (17 March) (also listed below in the 1998 floods section).
C.M. Rodrigue. 2003.
Representation of the September 11th terrorist attacks in the online edition of the Los Angeles Times. In Beyond September 11th: An Account of Post- Disaster Research, ed. Jacquelyn L. Monday, pp. 521- 588. University of Colorado Natural Hazards Research and Applications Information Center Special Publication 39 (a cooperative project of the Natural Hazards Research and Applications Information Center, Public Entity Risk Institute, and the Institute for Civil Infrastructure Systems).
C.M. Rodrigue. 2002.
Media coverage of the events of 9/11. Poster presented to the 27th Annual Hazards Research and Applications Workshop, Boulder, CO (14-17 July).
C.M. Rodrigue. 2002.
Patterns of media coverage of the terrorist attacks on the United States in September of 2001. Quick Response Report 146.
C.M. Rodrigue. 2002.
Media Coverage of the terrorist attack on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon. Poster presented to the Association of American Geographers, Los Angeles (20 March).
C.M. Rodrigue. 2002.
Media and the Terrorist Attack of 11 September 2001: Los Angeles Times' coverage for the first twelve weeks. Panel remarks presented to the "Media and the Terrorist Attack of 11 September 2001" panel, Association of American Geographers, Los Angeles (21 March).
C.M. Rodrigue. 2001.
Patterns of media coverage of the terrorist attacks on the United States in September of 2001. Abtract of then-ongoing research on NSF-sponsored Disaster Research Support Site, hosted by the New York University Institute for Civil Infrastructure Systems, New York.
C.M. Rodrigue. 2001.
Patterns of media coverage of the terrorist attacks on the United States in September of 2001. Panel remarks presented to the NSF-sponsored Learning from Urban Disasters Workshop, hosted by the New York University Institute for Civil Infrastructure Systems, New York (12 December).

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I first became involved with earthquake hazard through the "Northridge" earthquake, because, while working at CSU Chico, I maintained another home in Los Angeles and happened to have gotten caught at ground zero of the 1994 earthquake. I became interested in media construction of disaster when I noticed that the epicenter was in Reseda, my rather hardscrabble home town, not in Northridge, the upscale community for which the quake was named. This bias had earlier turned up in Dr. Rovai's examination of the so-called Ferndale Quake of 1992. I built a database of place-name mentions in the Los Angeles Times' coverage of the L.A. quake and compared it with L.A. City Department of Building and Safety data on the actual distribution of damaged buildings. With Dr. Place, I worked on a similar comparison with place-name mentions in La Opinión, the dominant Spanish-language paper in Los Angeles. In both cases, the departures between the print media pattern of attention and the actual pattern of damages showed biases along racial and income lines. I did a survey of Angelenos' mental maps of the damage, and their mental maps almost perfectly correlated with the media pattern rather than the actual damage patterns. Very unfortunately, the areas seriously undercovered by the media recovered significantly more slowly than those heavily overcovered by the media.

C.M. Rodrigue. 2006.
Review of After the Earth Shakes: Elastic Rebound on an Urban Planet. Geotimes 51, 11: 50-51.

E. Rovai and C.M. Rodrigue. 1998.
The "Northridge" and "Ferndale" earthquakes: Spatial inequities in media attention and recovery. National Social Science Journal 11, 2: 109-120.

C.M. Rodrigue, E.Rovai, and S.E. Place. 1997.
Construction of the "Northridge" earthquake in Los Angeles' English and Spanish print media: Damage, attention, and skewed recovery. Presentation to the Southern California Environment and History Conference, Northridge, CA.

C.M. Rodrigue and E. Rovai. 1995.
The "Northridge" earthquake: Differential geographies of damage, media attention, and recovery. National Social Science Perspectives Journal 7, 3: 97-111.

S.E. Place and C.M. Rodrigue. 1995.
Media construction of the "Northridge" earthquake in English and Spanish print media in Los Angeles. Proceedings, International Geographical Union, CD- ROM.

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In 1993, I became interested in chaparral fire hazard in montane suburban California. When natural hazard is examined from a structural approach, one would expect the poorest and most marginalized people to be most at risk to disaster. That is exactly what one sees in the developing world. In California, however, it is the most prosperous people who choose to live in the risky habitat of the very pyrogenic chaparral. In a situation like this, it is important to distinguish between risk of exposure to a hazard and vulnerability to it. The montane suburbanites of California certainly incur greater risk to chaparral fire in their search for a home with a view, but their vulnerability is socialized to the rest of society through insurance and tax mechanisms. Lately, I've become more interested in the underlying physical/biological factors underlying this hazard and the divergent views of Mediterranean scrub among European and American authors. These projects are summarized here:

C.M. Rodrigue. 2004.
The construction of Mediterranean scrub in biogeography and ecology. Association of American Geographers, Denver.

C.M. Rodrigue. 2004.
The construction of scrub in California and the Mediterranean borderlands: Climatic and edaphic climax mosaic or anthropogenic artifact? American Geophysical Union, San Francisco (December). (unfortunately, due to illness, I was unable to drive to San Francisco to deliver the poster [564 K .ppt file])

C.M. Rodrigue. 1993.
Home with a view: Chaparral fire hazard and the social geographies of risk and vulnerability. California Geographer 33: 105-118.

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Comparisons of our fire-related work led to a collaboration between Dr. Paul Laris and myself on the disturbance history and prospects for restoration of California sage scrub or soft chaparral. CSS is common along the coast and interior valleys of Southern California and is a more open and lower scrub vegetation than chaparral. It features unusual drought adaptations, such as facultative summer deciduousness and an ability to capture fog drip or monsoonal thunderstorm precipitation. Some 67-90% of it has been destroyed by agriculture and urbanization, which threatens a number of animal species dependent on it for habitat. Much work has focussed on identifying factors preventing its re-establishment, such as too-frequent fire, overgrazing, air pollution, soil conditions favoring exotic annuals, allelopathy by invaders of the grasslands, plowing, and disruption of mycorrhizal symbionts in the CSS root zone. Our current focus is on the differences between long-stable boundaries between CSS and grassland and self-restoring, expanding CSS boundaries. Our work in this area includes supervision of graduate student theses, graduate seminars, undergraduate courses in biogeography, California ecosystems, and field methods, and mentoring high school and community college interns in the Geoscience Diversity Enhancement Program Track 2 (2008- 2010). We have field study sites on the Palos Verdes Peninsula, La Jolla and Serrano valleys in the westernmost Santa Monicas, Calabasas, Chatsworth, and the Sepulveda Dam Basin.

S. Brennan, P. Laris, and C.M. Rodrigue. 2018.
Coyote brush as facilitator of native California plant recovery in the Santa Monica Mountains. Madroño 65, 1: 47-59.
P. Laris, C. Seymour, and C.M. Rodrigue. 2018.
Grasses versus forbs: What a long term, repeat study can tell us about California's native prairie landscapes. Presentation to the Association of Pacific Coast Geographers, Reno, NV (26 October).
C.M. Rodrigue. 2015.
Differences in California sage scrub composition behind stable and recovering boundaries with annual grassland. Association of Pacific Coast Geographers, Palm Springs, CA.
C.M. Rodrigue. 2013.
Constructing all-year floristic keys for small areas. Fremontia: Journal of the California Native Plant Society 40, 1-2: 41-46.
C.M. Rodrigue, P. Laris, L. Avelar Portillo, S. Brennan, J. Diminutto, M. Mills, P. Nesbit, A. Santana, C. Tabag, C. Vaughan, and S. Winslow. 2013.
Restoration of California sage scrub: Reclamation of ground cover from exotic grassland. Presentation to the Southern California Academy of Sciences, Long Beach (invited symposium on California sage scrub, which I organized and, with Paul Laris, co-chaired).
J. Dean, P. Laris, C.M. Rodrigue, and M. Ferris. 2010.
An 80 year record of the disturbance regime of California coastal sage scrub on the Palos Verdes Peninsula. Presentation to the Southern California Academy of Sciences, Los Angeles.

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Frustration with students who never showed up for the first field trip I led for a class in biogeography in 2000 led me to impose an alternative field experience for them: I had them go out on their own and conduct several observations of street pigeons around Los Angeles, using the data collection forms and reference materials of the Cornell Lab of Ornithology's citizen science Project PigeonWatch. Attendance on the planned trip improved in subsequent semesters but there are always students whose schedules or emergencies can't accommodate it, so I've sent them out on PigeonWatches ever since, with the eventual accumulation of an enormous database on the size of pigeon flocks, the frequencies of different morphs, their courtships, and their precise locations. Cornell was interested in how feral pigeons' morphic diversity is maintained against balancing predator-enforced natural selection, and they wanted to explore sexual selection as a factor. The results of this decade-long citizen science project were never published. I put all the student reports into a common spreadsheet, mapped it in Google Earth, and then performed statistical analyses, which dismissed predator selection for crypticity in their habitats. A weak signal of assortative mating did come through.

C.M. Rodrigue. 2018.
If you blow off the field trip, you're going to be watching a lot of pigeons! Presentation to the Association of Pacific Coast Geographers, Reno, NV (27 October).


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With a team of graduate students involved in the Chico State Center for Hazards Research (James Hotchkiss, Adam Henderson, and Stacy Potter), Dr. Rovai and I conducted a field investigation of the impacts on Los Angeles of the El-Niño-attributed storms of late February 1998. We concentrated on actual patterns of damage and patterns reported in the print media, as they are reflected in local residents' mental maps of the disaster. We found that media coverage was actually broader, both within California and within the Southern California region, than the mental maps reported by residents. Local residents focused almost exclusively on Laguna Beach and Malibu. We also found that most people maintain an emergency kit, a cheap form of non-structural hazard mitigation. Very few homeowners, however, reported having flood insurance, despite their awareness of El Niño, generally believing they lived either too high to be affected (i.e., not in the floodplain) or too low to be affected (i.e., not in the mudslide-affected hillsides)! This field expedition was funded by a Quick Response grant from the University of Colorado, Boulder, Natural Hazards Center. Our results were summarized in one of their Quick Response Report series. The way things are shaping up in October 2015 with an even greater magnitude El Niño bearing down on Southern California, this old project may get new life.

C.M. Rodrigue. 2004.
El Niño and 9/11 Quick Response Research Projects. Panel presentation to the Quick Response Research and Scholarship in Geography panel, sponsored by the Hazards, Qualitative Methods, and Environmental Perception and Behavior specialty groups, Association of American Geographers, Philadelphia (17 March) (also listed above in the 9/11 section).

C.M. Rodrigue and Eugenie Rovai, with Adam Henderson, James Hotchkiss, and Stacy Potter. 1998.
El Niño and perceptions of the Southern California floods and mudslides of 1998. Quick Response Report 107.

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Dr. Rovai and I have also looked at the legal framework for water resource allocation in drought. I have been very concerned about the movement to have the San Fernando Valley secede from the City of Los Angeles, to which it had annexed itself to acquire water. The Valley is legally unable to draw on its own groundwater, to which Los Angeles has pueblo rights, or to the Owens River water, on which it currently largely depends. Should the Valley secede, water arrangements throughout the State of California will be drastically impacted, with all sorts of third party impacts on water users in the North State.

C.M. Rodrigue and E.Rovai. 1997.
Weaving the water web: Evolution of the legal framework for water resource development in California. Presentation to the Southern California Environment and History Conference, Northridge, CA (21 September).

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I have always been interested in the contexts creating human vulnerability and the social response to disaster. My dissertation addressed this general theme in the Neolithic process of the Near East, examining how the widespread sedentarization of human societies from about 15,000 years ago to 5,000 years ago increased their exposure to the dramatic environmental changes possible in one place. One response to this increased vulnerability was the domestication of plants and animals and, eventually, the rise of formal religion and proto-state societies. Another was the deterioration in women's status seen in virtually all class societies. This research eventually debunked the argument that religious sacrificial practices caused the domestication of animals, a view propounded by such cultural geographers as Eduard Hahn, Carl Sauer, Frederick and Elizabeth Simoons, and Erich Isaac. It also undermines rather romantic arguments for a golden age of matriarchy.

C.M. Rodrigue. 2016.
Animal domestication. Invited entry. Encyclopædia of the History of Science, Technology, and Medicine in Non-Western Cultures, 3rd ed. Ed. Helaine Selin. Dordrecht, Netherlands: Springer (in press).

C.M. Rodrigue. 2010.
Animal domestication. Invited entry. Encyclopedia of Human Geography, 2nd ed., ed. Barney Warf, vol. 2, pp. 781-784. Thousand Oaks, CA: SAGE Publications.

C.M. Rodrigue. 2005.
James Blaut's critique of diffusionism through a Neolithic lens: Early animal domestication in the Near East. Invited paper. Antipode 37, 5: 981-989.

C.M. Rodrigue. 2008.
Animal domestication. In Helaine Selin (ed.), Encyclopaedia of the History of Science, Technology, and Medicine in Non-Western Cultures, 2nd ed. Invited. New York: Springer, 2 vols., 2416 pp.

C.M. Rodrigue. 1997.
Animal domestication. In Helaine Selin (ed.), Encyclopaedia of the History of Science, Technology, and Medicine in Non-Western Cultures, pp. 64-66. Invited. Dordrecht, Netherlands: Kluwer Academic Publishers.

C.M. Rodrigue. 1992.
Can religion account for early animal domestications? A critical assessment of the cultural geographic argument, based on Near Eastern archaeological data. Professional Geographer 44, 4: 417-430.

C.M. Rodrigue. 1987.
An Evaluation of Ritual Sacrifice as an Explanation for Early Animal Domestications in the Near East. Disseration submitted in partial fulfillment of the requirements for a Ph.D. in Geography, Graduate School of Geography, Clark University, Worcester, MA.

C.M. Rodrigue. 1987.
The origins of women's subjugation: A tentative reconstruction. Presentation to the Association of American Geographers national meeting, Portland, OR.


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As a professor, much of my time is devoted to teaching. This education activity has generated research publications and presentations of an explicitly pædagogical or curricular nature. Generally, these projects have grown out of the supervision of research immersion projects for undergraduates, experiments with different teaching assignments, assessment activities, or from curricular issues facing my department.

Christine M. Rodrigue. 2012.
The AAG's ALIGNED Toolkit: A place-based approach to fostering diversity in the geosciences. American Geophysical Union, San Francisco.

Christine M. Rodrigue. 2012.
Geoscience diversity at California State University, Long Beach: GDEP and ALIGNED. Invited panel presentation in the "Diverse Experiences in Diversity at the Geography Department Scale" special session. Association of American Geographers, New York.
Christine M. Rodrigue. 2008.
Geography from the back of the AAG program: Is geography what we say or what we do? The California Geographer 48.

Christine M. Rodrigue. 2007.
Mars in the geography classroom." Association of Pacific Coast Geographers, Long Beach (October) (also listed in the Mars section above)

Christine M. Rodrigue. 2007.
Boldly going where no geographer has gone before: The Martian classroom." Los Angeles Geographic Society, Los Angeles (September) (also listed in the Mars section above).

Christine M. Rodrigue. 2007.
"Geography diversity initiatives at California State University, Long Beach: The Geoscience Diversity Enhancement Program." Yearbook of the Association of Pacific Coast Geographers 69: 160-167.

Christine M. Rodrigue. 2006.
Geography diversity initiatives at California State University, Long Beach: The Geoscience Diversity Enhancement Program. Invited panelist for the APCG Presidential Plenary session, "Geography in a Diverse World," Association of Pacific Coast Geographers, Eugene, Oregon (September).

Christine M. Rodrigue. 2006.
Growing geography: A view from "The Beach." Invited panelist for the APCG Healthy Departments Special Session, Association of Pacific Coast Geographers, Eugene, Oregon (September).

Christine M. Rodrigue. 2006.
Geography diversity initiatives at California State University, Long Beach: Interdisciplinary and interinstitutional Partnerships. Invited panelist for the AAG Diversity Task Force session: Collaboration and Outreach. Association of American Geographers, Chicago (March).

Christine M. Rodrigue. 2005.
The State of Geography and its cognate disciplines in the California State Universities from Fall 1992 through Fall 2004. The California Geographer 45: 59-85.

Elizabeth L. Ambos, Christine M. Rodrigue, Richard J. Behl, Christopher T. Lee, Suzanne P. Wechsler, Gregory Holk, Daniel O. Larson, R. Daniel Francis, and David Whitney. 2005.
Geoscience field studies at California State University at Long Beach: Urban applied research with a community focus. CUR Quarterly (Council on Undergraduate Research) 26, 2: 56-61 (this is the lead article in a special issue on "Undergraduate research that serves the community").

Elizabeth L. Ambos, Richard Behl, David Whitney, Christine M. Rodrigue, Suzanne P. Wechsler, Gregory Holk, Christopher T. Lee, R. Daniel Francis, and Daniel O. Larson. 2005.
Geosciences student recruitment strategies at California State University, Long Beach (CSULB): Earth system science/community-research based education partnerships. American Geophysical Union, San Francisco (5 December).

Suzanne P. Wechsler, David Whitney, Elizabeth L. Ambos, Christine M. Rodrigue, Christopher T. Lee, Richard Behl, Daniel O. Larson, R. Daniel Francis, and Gregory Holk,. 2005.
Enhancing diversity in the geosciences. Journal of Geography 104, 4 (July/August): 141-149.

David J. Whitney, Richard J. Behl, Elizabeth L. Ambos, R. Daniel Francis, Gregory Holk, Daniel O. Larson, Christopher T. Lee, Christine M. Rodrigue, and Suzanne P. Wechsler. 2005.
Ethnic differences in geoscience attitudes of college students. EOS 86, 30 (26 July): 277, 279.

Christine M. Rodrigue. 2005.
The state of geography and its cognate disciplines in the California State Universities. California Geographical Society, Yosemite (23 April).

Richard Behl, Elizabeth L. Ambos, R. D. Francis, Gregory Holk, Daniel O. Larson, Christopher T. Lee, Christine M. Rodrigue, Suzanne P. Wechsler, and David J. Whitney. 2004.
Hunting for students: Outreach and retention strategies in a competitive urban market. Geological Society of America, Denver, CO (9 November).

Christine M. Rodrigue, Elizabeth L. Ambos, Richard Behl, R. D. Francis, Daniel O. Larson, María-Teresa Ramírez-Herrera, Gregory Holk, Suzanne P. Wechsler, Christopher T. Lee, David J. Whitney, and Shellinda Barré. 2004.
GDEP (Geoscience Diversity Enhancement Program): An NSF-OEDG program emphasizing interdisciplinary Earth system science research. Universities Space Research Association conference, "Earth System Science Education for the 21st Century, Monterey, CA (28-30 June).

Elizabeth L. Ambos, Richard Behl, R. D. Francis, Daniel O. Larson, María-Teresa Ramírez-Herrera, Christine M. Rodrigue, Gregory Holk, Suzanne P. Wechsler, Christopher T. Lee, David J. Whitney, and Shellinda Barré. 2004.
GDEP (Geoscience Diversity Enhancement Program): An NSF-OEDG program emphasizing integrated geoscience research in urban areas. Incorporated Research Institutions for Seismology, Tucson, AZ (June).

Christine M. Rodrigue, Eugenie Rovai, and Steve Stewart, with Judith A. Tyner. 2004.
Web Reports and Maps: Student Collaborative Research Online. California Geographical Society, Long Beach (23-25 April).

Christine M. Rodrigue, Christopher T. Lee, María-Teresa Ramírez-Herrera, Robert D. Francis, Elizabeth L. Ambos (GDEP PI), Richard Behl, Gregory Holk, Daniel O. Larson, Suzanne P. Wechsler, James C. Sample, David J. Whitney, and Crisanne Hazen. 2003.
GDEP (Geoscience Diversity Enhancement Program): Hazards-related projects. 28th Annual Hazards Research and Applications Workshop Boulder, CO (July).

Christine M. Rodrigue, Suzanne Wechsler, David Whitney, Elizabeth L. Ambos, María-Teresa Ramírez-Herrera, Richard Behl, Robert D. Francis, and Crisanne Hazen. 2003.
Geoscience Diversity Enhancement Program: Student responses. The Association of American Geographers, New Orleans (5 March).

Elizabeth L. Ambos, James C. Sample, Richard Behl, Robert D. Francis, Daniel O. Larson, María-Teresa Ramírez-Herrera, Christine M. Rodrigue, Suzanne Wechsler, David Whitney, and Crisanne Hazen. 2003.
The Geoscience Diversity Enhancement Program (GDEP): Building an Earth system science centered research, education, and outreach effort in urban Long Beach, California. The American Geophysical Union, San Francisco (December).

E.L. Ambos, J.C. Sample, R. Behl, R.D. Francis, D.O. Larson, M.T. Ramírez-Herrera, C. M. Rodrigue, S.P. Wechsler, D.J. Whitney, and C. Hazen. 2002.
GDEP (Geoscience Diversity Enhancement Program): Creating a community-based summer geoscience research program. The Geological Society of America, Denver (October).

D.J. Whitney, S.P. Wechsler, C.M. Rodrigue, M.T. Ramírez-Herrera, R.J. Behl, E.L. Ambos, R.D. Francis, J.C. Sample, D.O. Larson, and C. Hazen. 2002.
General education student perceptions of the geosciences. Association of Pacific Coast Geographers, San Bernardino, CA (5 October).

C.M. Rodrigue. 2002.
Hazards and GIS education at California State University, Long Beach. Invited talk to the "What's Happening in Higher Education? Student Needs and University Responses" panel. 27th Annual Hazards Research and Applications Workshop, Boulder, CO (July).

S.P. Wechsler and C.M. Rodrigue. 2002.
GIS articulation: Addressing the issue, sharing experiences and moving forward. Twenty-second Annual ESRI International User's Conference (ESRI Education Users -- HiEd: GIS Articulation), San Diego (June).

C.M. Rodrigue. 2002.
Assessment of an experiment in teaching geography online. California Geographical Society, Lone Pine (3-5 May).

C.M. Rodrigue and E.Rovai. 1998.
Construction of an interactive map for the web by students in paired classes, National Social Science Association, San Diego (April).

C.M. Rodrigue. 1996.
The imaginary migration exercise: An approach to teaching ethnic issues. Journal of Geography 95, 2: 81-85.

C.M. Rodrigue. 1994.
The imaginary migration exercise: An approach to ethnic issues in a California Geography Course. California Geographic Society, Pomona (April).

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Document maintained by Christine M. Rodrigue, Ph.D.
Last revised: 05/12/20

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