Meera Burghardt ’24


School of Public and International Affairs

Project Title

Promoting Pro-conservation Behaviors in Recreational Scuba Divers on Coral Reefs in Southeast Asia

Certificate(s): Applications of Computing, Environmental Studies

I traveled across Southeast Asia researching environmental attitudes and behaviors among recreational scuba divers. Bailey White and I worked together with our mentor, Bing Lin, to collect various types of data that will be used to make conclusions on the impact of recreational scuba diving on coral reefs. Coral reefs are dying at an alarming rate, and recreational scuba diving is one of the many human interactions causing their decline. In one facet of the research, we collected video footage of scuba divers during their dives and observed their interactions with the reef. We also conducted surveys to assess environmental attitudes among divers. This research will hopefully give insights into the specifics of how recreational scuba diving is hurting coral reefs that can be used to develop policy recommendations that promote pro-conservation attitudes and behaviors.

Internship Year


Project Category

Biodiversity and Conservation


Wilcove Lab, Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, Princeton University - Bali, Indonesia; Malapascua, Philippines; Panglao, Philippines


David Wilcove, Professor of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology and Public Affairs and the High Meadows Environmental Institute; Bing Lin, Ph.D. candidate, School of Public and International Affairs