erika-headshot-smallI am a Research Assistant Professor at the Virginia Modeling, Analysis and Simulation Center at Old Dominion University. My research takes place in the Storymodelers Lab at VMASC. I am also an adjunct lecturer in the ODU Women’s Studies Department and Graduate Program in International Studies, teaching undergraduate and graduate courses in Research Methodologies, Modeling & Simulation, and Refugee Studies.

In the area of Forced Migration and Refugee Studies, I am part of a team studying host communities that receive sudden, large arrivals of displaced persons. We are interested in understand how host community dynamics–including social, political, and infrastructural–can be supported in order to reduce the chances of social instability and xenophobic violence.

I have conducted fieldwork in Greece, Rwanda, Peru, Colombia, South Africa, and Haiti, and lived abroad in Japan. To support integration of ODU students into local refugee resettlement projects, I served on the Community Advisory Board for the local resettlement organization in Hampton Roads for five years. In 2015, I had the opportunity to improve my methodological approach to modeling social science research questions by participating in the Santa Fe Institute’s Graduate Workshop in Computational Social Science, Modeling, and Complexity. I served on the Head of Projects team for the Emerging Scholars and Practitioners on Migration Issues (ESPMI) Network from 2016 – 2018. I have served on the programming committee for the SCS Spring Simulation Multi-Conference, Annual Simulation Symposium from 2017-2020. I am also currently an Associate Editor of the peer-reviewed journal SIMULATION.