Melinda Butterworth

Assistant Professor of Environmental & Earth Sciences


  • Ph.D., Geography, University of Arizona
  • M.S., Geography, Virginia Tech
  • B.S., Geography, B.A., Psychology, Virginia Tech


  • Health & the Global Environment
  • Introduction to Environmental Science

Professional Interests

I am a health/medical geographer with interests in the social and environmental aspects of disease emergence and spread. My research focuses on understanding the links between climate, ecology, and socio-political processes shaping disease. Most of my work has focused on the changing geographies of mosquito-borne diseases in the southern United States, using a mix of quantitative and qualitative methods.


vonHedemann, N., Butterworth, M., Robbins, P., Landau, K., and Morin, C. 2015. Visualizations of mosquito risk: A political ecology approach to understanding the territorialization of hazard control. Landscape and Urban Planning (In Press)

Hayden, M., Cavanaugh, J., Tittel, C., Butterworth, M., Haenchen, S., Dickenson, K., et al. 2015. Post Outbreak Review: Dengue Preparedness and Response in Key West, Florida. Am. J. Trop. Med. Hyg. 93(2), 397-400

Del Casino, V., Butterworth, M., and Davis, G. 2014. The Slippery Geographies of Polio. The Lancet Infectious Diseases. 14(7):546-7.

Shaw, I., Jones, J.P., and Butterworth, M. 2013. The mosquito's umwelt, or one monster's standpoint ontology. Geoforum. 48: 260-267.

El Vilaly, A., Arora, M., Butterworth, M., El Vilaly, M., Jarnagin, W., and Comrie, C. 2013. Climate, environment and disease: The case of Rift Valley fever. Progress in Physical Geography. 37(2): 259-269.

Butterworth, M., Kolivras, K., Grossman, L., and Redican, K. 2010. Knowledge, Perceptions, and Practices: Mosquito-borne disease transmission in southwest Virginia. Southeastern Geographer. 50(3).