Monica Barra is a Research Assistant for The Water Institute of the Gulf, where she is a member of the People, Resources, and Technology group. In conjunction with her work at the Institute, she is a doctoral candidate in cultural anthropology at The Graduate Center, City University of New York.
Her current research focuses on the social impacts of land loss and coastal restoration science in southeastern Louisiana.
Prior to joining the Institute, Monica worked with a team of urban planners and geographers at the Science and Resilience Institute at Jamaica Bay, New York conducting community-based research on perceptions and practices of environmental and social sustainability in the Jamaica Bay region of New York City. This work encompassed collaboratively designing and implementing community-based focus groups, interviews, and analysis of social resilience in urban communities impacted by Hurricane Sandy in 2012.
Monica holds an M.A. in American Studies from Rutgers University, an M.Phil. in Cultural Anthropology from the Graduate Center, City University of New York, and a B.A. in Comparative Literature and Urban Studies from the Johnston Center for Integrative Studies at the University of Redlands.