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Costa Rica: Field Research in the Environment, Social Sciences, & Humanities

San José & field sites, Costa Rica

Gabriela Calvo

Areas of expertise

Management of Exploration and Development of Metallic and Industrial Mining Projects, Mining Permit Procedures, Environmental Impact Evaluation, Environmental Impact Studies, Environmental License Procedures, Risk Management, Environmental Management of Projects


  • B.S. in Geology, University of Costa Rica
  • M.S. in Geology, University of Costa Rica (Geological Environmental Administration Projects)

Potential student research areas

  • Geological studies for potential garbage landfills
  • Socio-economic studies of artesanal mining
  • Heavy metal contamination evaluation in the San Juan river
  • Analysis of flood vulnerability of the town of Puerto Viejo de Sarapiquí


Gabriela Calvo is the former President and Vice President of the Costa Rican Geology Society and has been a professor at the University of Costa Rica teaching courses in the Geology School such as: General Oceanography and Mineral Resources Management, Management of non-Metallic Materials, and Environmental Geology I and II. She has also been an independent consultant for over 20 years, carrying out projects related to environmental impact statements and administration in the geology field.

Costa Rica: Field Research in the Environment, Social Sciences, & Humanities

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Matt Spanier The semester I spent in the Costa Rica Field Research program turned out to be the most influential experience of my undergraduate education. I received a top-rate research experience at a leatherback sea turtle conservation project on the Caribbean coast, where I developed a project that I would later develop into my senior thesis and publish in a tropical conservation journal. Just as important, however, were the relationships I built with my host families, the Spanish language skills I developed, and the understanding I gained of life in Central America. The incredible job the ACM staff did of combining an intense research and cultural experience is what made my semester both so valuable and unique. As I enter medical school to pursue a career involving global health, the desire to continue working in Latin America that my time in Costa Rica ignited will continue to influence my educational and career goals.

—Matt Spanier, Costa Rica, Spring 2008

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