Osanna Drake

Osanna is a first-year PhD student in Marine Science and Conservation, studying collective action in social-ecological systems. She uses mixed qualitative and quantitative methods to investigate complex environmental phenomena, and draws theory from across the social and natural sciences, as well as the humanities. She is particularly interested in how mutually beneficial partnerships (biological, social, and institutional) can inform just and effective governance.

 She graduated from Stanford University in 2021 with an M.S. and B.S. with Honors in Earth Systems, along with a minor in Spanish and diploma notations in Science Communication and Public Service. During this time, she developed a passion for transdisciplinary research and cross-cultural collaboration. Her research has taken her from Chile to Australia, where she lived and worked for several months. Her past projects include: describing novel invertebrate behavior in the rocky intertidal of Monterey Bay, analyzing amphibian disease in peri-urban environments, and predicting the impacts of climate change on herbivory in the Great Barrier Reef. She has also leveraged GIS and data visualization to explore lead prevalence in primary school drinking water, promote socially conscious tourism in Palau’s national marine sanctuary, support affordable housing developers in conserving water usage, and visualize muskrat lodge distribution in a freshwater estuary.

Prior to arriving at Duke, she completed a year-long fellowship at Oceana where she used emerging technologies and big data analytics to address illegal, unreported, and unregulated (IUU) fishing across the globe. In doing so, she developed data-driven solutions for fisheries management, thereby promoting sustainability and equity at the science-policy interface.

In her free time, you can find her woodworking, leading interactive tours at art museums, and playing the blues on her harmonica.