Tapia receives Fulbright grant to conduct research in Costa Rica

Andrea Tapia, associate professor of Information Sciences and Technology at Penn State, has been awarded a Fulbright grant from The J. William Fulbright Scholarship Board and the Council for International Exchange of Scholars.

Tapia will travel to San Jose, Costa Rica, from January to July 2012, where she will partner with the Central American School of Geology, Department of Seismology, Vulcanology and Geophysical Research at the University of Costa Rica.

During her time in Costa Rica, Tapia will conduct a research project titled, “Improving Emergency Preparedness and Response in Costa Rica through Law, Coordination and Technology.”

“The goal of my project is to determine the effects of a national-level legal mandate to coordinate and to share information upon the social and informational networks among the emergency response sector,” said Tapia.

Tapia’s is interested in improving emergency preparedness and response in Costa Rica because the country frequently experiences natural disasters, and has a stable government and economy. She said she hopes to use her experience and knowledge of public informatics improve the country’s plans for post-disaster and emergency aid, safety and security, economic and social development, and telecommunications.

Tapia also will teach an interdisciplinary graduate level course in Costa Rica, titled Technologies for Good: Technologies Improving Emergency Response, Humanitarian Relief and Social Development.

“My goal as an educator is to create a mechanism by which my research informs my teaching and my teaching informs my research,” said Tapia.

Last Updated July 05, 2011