Donnie Sackey Receives National Institutes of Health Funding


Department of English assistant professor, Donnie Sackey, is the co-recipient of a $421,435 grant from the National Institute of Health to fund research surrounding the water crisis in Flint, MI.

Sackey is the co-principal investigator for the research project entitled, "Rapid Response to Contaminants in Flint Drinking Water," NIH grant number R21ES027199.

He will work alongside professors Shawn McElmurry, Carol Miller, David Pitts, Matthew Seeger, Paul Kilgore (Wayne State University); Susan Masten and Mona Hanna-Attisha (Michigan State University). Sackey and Seeger will focus on environmental risk communication strategies.

Specifically, they will test the extent to which social media platforms (e.g. Facebook, Twitter, Instagram) can serve as an effective channels for enhancing residents' knowledge through facilitated discussions around emerging crisis information (e.g., data on water quality).

Sackey will also be working closely with water quality specialists to report lead contamination data and the effectiveness of point-of-use water filtration devices to various resident.

While his research is focused squarely on Flint, this type of research could be beneficial when considering the risks posed by crumbling infrastructure around the country.

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