Dr. Meryl Shriver-Rice

Anand Varma

Director of the Environment, Culture & Media MPS/MA 

Abess Center for Ecosystem Science, & Policy

Director of Environmental Media Lab: 


Email: shriverrice@miami.edu

Dr. Shriver-Rice developed and directs the Master’s program in Environment, Culture, & Media. She currently teaches graduate courses in technology & human behavior, visual anthropology, and environmental communication for the ECM Program. As both a media anthropologist and archaeobotanist, Dr. Shriver-Rice’s interdisciplinary background includes dual degrees in Anthropology and Biology, and graduate degrees in Mediterranean Archaeology (archaeobotany at University of Nottingham, England) and Communication. Dr. Shriver-Rice has previously taught courses in cultural theory,  intercultural communication, the psychology of group behavior, and media studies in New York City (MCNY, SoHo) and Rome, Italy (John Cabot University). She also teaches a UM study abroad summer program in Science, Media & Storytelling in Switzerland (Franklin University). 

Recent Publications and works in progress:

  1. 'Environmental Approaches to Etruscan Studies: Re-Visiting Negri 1927 Almost One Hundred Years Later' (with S. Stoddart and A.M. Mercuri) 2021 in Etruscan Archaeology: Technologies and Methods edited by Maurizio Forté. Oxford University Press. 
  2. 'What is environmental media?' (with H. Vaughan) December 2019. Journal of Environmental Media Vol. 1.1 Intellect Press. https://www.intellectbooks.com/journal-of-environmental-media
  3. 'Digital Heritage and the Anthropocene: Media Use in Site-Specific Archaeological Installations in Lazio, Italy' (with H.Vaughan) 2020. Journal of Italianist Studies : Special Issue on Ecomedia. Volume 40:2. https://www.tandfonline.com/loi/yita20
  4. 'Introducing Relational Values as a Tool for Shark Conservation, Science, and Management' 2019. Skubel, R.; Shriver-Rice, M.; and Maranto, G. Frontiers in Marine Science. Volume 6 https://www.frontiersin.org/articles/10.3389/fmars.2019.00053/full 
  5. 'An Audience Study of Formal Variables in Digital Short-Form Environmental Media' 2021. Shriver-Rice, M.; Hernandez, J.; Riopelle, C.; Vaughan, H.; Johns, L. 
  6. Stories of Scandinavian Guilt and Privilege: Transnational Danish Directors, 2021 in A History of Danish Cinema. Edited by C. Claire Thomson, Isak Thorsen and Pei-Sze Chow. Edinburgh University Press https://www.amazon.co.uk/History-Danish-Cinema-Claire-Thomson/dp/1474461123 
  7. The Jolie Files: Environmental Activism, Power, and Celebrity (Book, 2021) Molloy, M. and Shriver-Rice, M.
  8. Danish Privilege and Responsibility in the Work of Susanne Bier 2018 in ReFocus: The Work of Susanne Bier. Edited By Missy Molloy, Mimi Nielsen, and Meryl Shriver-Rice, Edinburgh University Press.https://euppublishingblog.com/2019/01/25/in-conversation-with-susanne-bier/

Courses taught:

ECS 609 Contemporary Representations of the Environment

ECS 610 Technology and Human Behavior

ECS 611 Nature, the Anthropocene, and Visual Anthropology

ECS 612 Environmental Communication, New Media & Policy

ECS 601 Environmental Research Methods

ECS 603 Environmental Interdisciplinary Methods

ECS 790 Directed Readings in Anthropology and Film


Media studies:

She is the founding editor (with CU Boulder's Environmental-media-scholar-in-residence Hunter Vaughan) of the Journal of Environmental Media (Intellect Press). Her current media studies research focuses on digital culture and the role of visual artifacts in shaping societal values and perceptions of the environment. She was a speaker at Georgia Tech’s Visualizing Climate Change Workshop in 2017 and the “Empirical Ecocriticism Workshop” at the Rachel Carson Center for Environment & Society in Munich, Germany in 2018. She is the 2018 recipient (with Juliana Fernandez and Cameron Riopelle) of a grant from the Center for Communication, Culture, and Change for the project: An Audience Study of Formal Variables in Digital Short-Form Environmental Media. Her prior media research has looked at ethical issues through an anthropological lens to examine and contextualize how knowledge and value systems are created, transmitted, and maintained through media. She is the author of Inclusion in New Danish Cinema: Sexuality and Transnational Belonging (Intellect Press, 2015) and co-editor of ReFocus: The Work of Susanne Bier (with Mimi Nielsen & Missy Molly, Edinburgh University Press, 2018).


Dr. Shriver-Rice has excavated overseas with international teams in the Czech Republic, Scotland, England, Italy, and Turkey; including the UNESCO World heritage site Çatalhöyük and the National Geographic site Sant’Omobono in Rome. She has been the director of the environmental team at Poggio Civitate Archaeological Project since 2017. The launch of her current research project 'Economic balance and seasonality: landscape perception as embodied, sensory knowledge of ancient agricultural practices and plant foraging in Etruria' was supported by a fellowship at the American Academy in Rome (2016). This study investigates evidence for environmental reconstruction, prehistoric agriculture, food gathering, plant based ritual amongst the pre-Roman city-states of modern day Tuscany. Overall, this project explores how ancient peoples’ daily lives were shaped by a complex intertwining with the natural world, from the practical daylong threshing of grains and processing of grapes for wine, to the cosmic divination of lightning storms and sheep’s entrails—a narrative that prefaces the paradoxes of our own contemporary relationship to the environment.

She also has 15 years of experience as a rescue archaeologist in cultural resource management excavating at sites where urban development threatens archaeological remains. She is a member of the Coastal Heritage At Risk Task Force (CHART) composed of state and county archaeologists, the National Park Service, The Tribal Historic Preservation Office, and academic archaeologists who are addressing the challenge of salvaging, preserving, and conserving thousands of sites at risk from sea-level rise along Florida’s vast coastline. Her excavation work has included downtown Miami at the 2,000 year old “Birth of Miami” site, on Brickell Ave, as well as in California, Missouri, and Illinois. 

Current research projects:

  1. ‘Economic balance and seasonality: landscape perception as embodied, sensory knowledge of ancient agricultural practices and plant foraging in Etruria’  2022
  2. CRITICAL LAB (Community Research IniTiative for Interdisciplinary Collaboration And Learning)      Ethnographic research of sea-level rise and environmental justice issues using large digital data sets in classrooms in Little Havana and Hialeah, Miami (with Jennifer Kuhn, Matt DeRoo, Daryl Axelrod, and Hunter Vaughan).

    3. An Audience Study of Formal Variables in Digital Short-Form Environmental Media, grant from Center for Center for Communication, Culture, and Change (with Juliana Fernandez, Cameron Riopelle, and Lisa Johns).

    4. Virtual reality, augmented reality, interactive media, and site-specific animated projection at heritage sites. 

    5. Archaeobotanical investigations at Poggio Civitate, Murlo, Pre-Roman Central Italy



Doctoral student advising:

2016- present Lisa Johns, Abess PhD Candidate (advisor), Content, Culture, and Context: An Examination of Short-form Environmental Media  (scheduled to complete in Fall 2020)

2017 -present Shireen Rahimi, Abess PhD (committee), An Evaluation of Ecological Impacts, Local Perspectives, Visual Landscapes Surrounding the Lionfish Invasion in Abaco, Bahamas  (completed summer 2020) Website: https://www.shireenrahimi.com

2017-present Rachel Skubel, Abess PhD Candidate (committee), Vulnerability of the South Florida Commercial Shark Fishery to Environmental Change: Social and Ecological Dimensions of Risk  (scheduled to complete in Spring 2021)  Website: https://sharkresearch.rsmas.miami.edu/meet-our-team-rachel-skubel/   Twitter: @rachelskubel 

2017-present Christine Pardo, Abess PhD student (committee), Plant Invasions in Tropical Forests: A Case Study of Zingiber spectabile in Southern Costa Rica (scheduled to complete in 2021) Website: https://christinejpardo.wordpress.com/author/cjpardo27/ Twitter: @ecoxtine 

2018-present Mariam Abazeri, Abess PhD student (advisor), Participatory Action Research Through Collaborative Media in Drought Adaptation (scheduled to complete in 2022) Website for film project:http://acf.biff.kr/eng/html/projects/documentary_view.asp?section=AND&column=&searchString=&this_year=2018&gotoPage=1&idx=369 

2020-present Marcus Reamer, Abess PhD student (advisor) 

2019-present Sam Johnson, MLL PhD Student (committee)


Master's student advising:

2017-2018 Savannah Geary, Master’s of Arts Environment, Culture & Media (advisor), The Plastic Crisis Goes Public: Environmental Communication, Media Representation, and Public Perception of Plastic Pollution   Twitter: @savroge 

2018-2019 Mollie Beek Master's of Arts Environment, Culture, & Media (advisor), Environment and Identity: An Environmental History of Coconut Grove

2018-2019 Dana Biddle Master's of Professional Science Environment, Culture, & Media (advisor), Development of a Media Circulation Plan & Creation of Environmental Short Films for Sereia Films https://sereiafilms.org

2018-2019 Sophie Cayuso Master's of Arts Environment, Culture, & Media (advisor) A study of environmental conservation through ecotourism in a case study of the Las Terrazas resort in Pinar del Rio, Cuba

2018-2019 Madison Alvarez Master's in Professional Science Environment, Culture, & Media (advisor) Creating New Insights and Story Angles For the General Public Regarding the Dumping of Toxic Waste at the San Onofre State Beach Park https://publicwatchdogs.org

2018-2019 Adam Roberti Master's in Professional Science Environment, Culture, & Media (advisor) Management of Xavier Cortada’s Participatory Art Projects in Miami-Dade County https://cortadaprojects.org

2018-2019 Natalia Horvath Master's in Professional Science (advisor) Production of Environmental Messaging Materials for Bullsugar.org and Friends of the Everglades https://www.bullsugar.org/#

2018 Eryn Campbell, Master’s Professional Science in Climate & Society (committee), Development of Climate Change Communication Materials for the National Capital Region of the National Park Service  Eryn is now a PhD student (2019) at George Mason University's Center for Climate Change Communication.


Societies and Memberships:

American Anthropological Association

Archaeological Institute of America

Anthropology & Environment Society

Society for Ethnobiology

Visual Anthropology Society

International Environmental Communication Association

Society for Cinema & Media Studies, Media & Environment Scholarly Interest Group (Chair)

Women in Aviation