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Jessica Sparks, MSW, MCM ’14, PhD

Course Director, Department of Infectious Disease and Global Health Pronouns: She/her


Dr. Sparks joined the MCM program in 2016 as the course director for Project Management and Communication and Research Skills I and is a 2014 graduate of the program. She is also the Associate Director of the University of Nottingham's Rights Lab's Ecosystems and the Environment Programme and is a Fellow with Stanford University's Center for Ocean Solutions.

Trained as a social scientist, Dr. Sparks is interested in the human dimensions of conservation medicine, particularly in marine ecosystems. Her research uses both quantitative and qualitative methods to study the links between climate change, environmental degradation, and modern slavery. While most of her research has focused on the links between fish stock declines and modern slavery on fishing vessels, she has also researched the presence of this nexus in the context of deforestation, mining, and sustainable food systems. Some of her current research projects include a global port risk assessment of the co-occurrence of labor abuses and illegal, unreported, and unregulated (IUU) fishing; exploring the relationship between climate change and forced marriage; and carbon footprinting modern slavery.