In this week’s episode our guest is Dr. Maryann Cairns, who talks about her career path and her studies on pathogens in water. Dr Cairns is an environmental anthropologist who uses using creative research designs and cultural understanding to safeguard the environment and human health. Her work has examined the politics of water and sanitation systems, the impacts of tourism on coastal water quality and human health, and the low-cost technologies to treat wastewater-polluted rivers. She’s done research in several parts of the world including Latin America & the Caribbean, the Western Balkans, and the United States. In this podcast she talks about her work, in particular a recent $1.5 million dollar collaborative National Science Foundation-supported research program (the MERA investigation) which studied human exposure to pathogens in coastal areas in Costa Rica.