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Professor Sarah Parkinson among 2019 Catalyst Award recipients

This year, 33 early career faculty members representing 26 departments were selected to receive Johns Hopkins Catalyst Awards, an honor that is accompanied by a $75,000 grant for research, mentoring opportunities, and institutional recognition. Parkinson’s project will focus on how Middle Eastern militaries respond to natural and manmade disasters with a specific eye towards how these organizations plan for crises related to climate change.

Her tentative plan is to conduct extended field research in the Middle East in spring 2020, return to the U.S. in summer 2020 to undergo search and rescue training, serve as a search and rescue volunteer in fall 2020, and observe emergency response training and deployments in the Middle East in 2021.

Parkinson is excited to receive the grant and said that “it is an honor and a privilege to work for a university that not only values but supports junior faculty projects.” Ultimately, Parkinson plans to turn her findings from the project into a book.

Previously, Parkinson conducted extensive fieldwork among Palestinian and Syrian refugees in Lebanon and with humanitarian organizations in Iraqi Kurdistan. Her work has been published in the American Political Science Review, Social Science and Medicine, The Middle East Report, and The Washington Post's Monkey Cage.

Parkinson joins Johns Hopkins SAIS colleagues Ling Chen, Assistant Professor of International Political Economy, and Sarah Jordaan, Assistant Professor of Energy, Resources and Environment, as 2019 Catalyst Award honorees. Since the award’s creation in 2015, three of the school’s faculty members have been selected as Catalyst Award recipients: Assistant Professor of International Development Daniel Honig, Assistant Professor of International Political Economy Matthias Matthijs, and Associate Professor of International Political Economy David Steinberg.