Dr. Kathryn Fiorella is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Population Medicine and Diagnostic Sciences and the Masters in Public Health Program at Cornell University. She is also a faculty fellow of the Atkinson Center for Sustainable Future and the Center for Health Equity. Kathryn holds a PhD in Environmental Science, Policy, and Management, a master's in Public Health from the University of California, Berkeley, and an AB from Princeton University in Ecology and Evolutionary Biology. She was an Atkinson Postdoctoral Fellow at Cornell University and a Postdoctoral Immersion Fellow at the Socio-Environmental Synthesis Center (SESYNC).
Kathryn is an environmental scientist and epidemiologist, and her research aims to understand the interactions among environmental change and livelihood, food, and nutrition security. Her work is focused on global fisheries and the households that are reliant on them to access food and income. She uses interdisciplinary methods and her work aims to foster a deeper understanding of how ecological and social systems interact, the ways communities and households adapt to and mitigate environmental change, and the links between human health and ecological sustainability. Around Lake Victoria, Kenya, her work has analyzed how fish declines affect childhood nutrition and cognitive development, assessing how fisher health alters the sustainability of fishing practices, and describing how declining fish catch alters power dynamics within transactional fish-for-sex relationships. In Cambodia’s rice field fisheries, her work examines how community fish refuges are shaped by community governance and ecological monitoring, the role of refuges in provide diverse diets and nutrition to local households, and how biodiversity within the system is valued by local households.