Jacqueline MacDonald Gibson
Department Chair, Environmental and Occupational Health
Carnegie Mellon University, Ph.D., Engineering and Public Policy, 2007
Carnegie Mellon University, Ph.D., Civil and Environmental Engineering, 2007
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, M.S., Environmental Science in Civil Engineering, 1990
Bryn Mawr College, B.A., Mathematics, 1986
- Professor, Environmental Sciences and Engineering, School of Public Health, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Feb. 1-July 31, 2019
- Associate Professor, Environmental Sciences and Engineering, School of Public Health, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, 2014-Jan. 31, 2019
- Assistant Professor, Environmental Sciences and Engineering, School of Public Health, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Jul. 1 2007-December 31, 2013
- National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship, 2003-2006
- Senior Engineer, RAND Corp., 2003-2007
- Associate Director, Water Science and Technology Board, National Research Council, 1997-1999
- Research Associate, Staff Officer, and Senior Staff Officer, Water Science and Technology Board, National Research Council, 1990-1996
Courses Currently/Recently Taught
- Environmental Risk Assessment
- Environmental Decision Analysis
- Water-Health Research
News stories of health risks from toxic waste spills, polluted water supplies, hazy air, contaminated foods, and other environmental problems abound. Sorting through the headlines to figure out what environmental risks really might be important to your health or your community’s health and figuring out how to decrease those risks can seem an insurmountable task. My research seeks to illuminate what individuals, communities, and policymakers can do to make the biggest and most lasting improvements in public health by improving the quality of our environment.
My students and I parse complicated environmental problems into manageable elements that can be modeled mathematically and re-integrated to inform environmental and public health policy decisions. We have worked across the globe, from the US to the United Arab Emirates. Our work examines environmental risks to health at the scale of communities, building models that integrate knowledge of how pollutants are distributed through communities, how people become exposed to pollutants and other environmental risks factors, and how these exposures, in turn, increase risks of illness or premature death. Our main tools are drawn from applied mathematics and statistics, but we also conduct field research. My students have collected and analyzed water and air samples, administered surveys, and conducted focus group interviews, in order to develop the knowledge needed to understand environmental risks to public health and advance policies to reduce those risks. Given an important environmental policy question, we find the tools needed to analyze potential solutions.
You may find more information at my lab website.
Riley Mulhern, Banks Grubbs, Kathleen Gray, and Jacqueline MacDonald Gibson. 2021. User experience of point-of-use water treatment for private wells in North Carolina: Implications for outreach and well stewardship. Science of the Total Environment. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.scitotenv.2021.150448
MacDonald Gibson, Jacqueline, Frank Stillo III, Erica Wood, Sydney Lockhart, and Wändi Bruine de Bruine. 2021. Private well testing in peri-urban African-American communities lacking access to regulated municipal drinking water: a mental models approach to risk communication. Risk Analysis. DOI: 10.1111/risa.13799.
Hunter, B., I. Walker Karega, R. Lassiter, V. Lassiter, J. MacDonald Gibson, P. Lee Ferguson, and M.A. Deshusses. 2021. Evaluation of private well contaminants in an underserved North Carolina community. Science of the Total Environment. 789 (1 October):147823. DOI: doi.org/10.1016/j.scitotenv.2021.147823
Obeng-Gyasi, E., J. Roostaei, and J. MacDonald Gibson. 2021. Lead distribution in urban soil in a medium-sized city: household-scale analysis. Environmental Science & Technology 55(6): 3696-3705. DOI: doi.org/10.1021/acs.est.0c07317
Roostaei, J., S. Colley, R. Mulhern, A. A. May, and J. MacDonald Gibson. 2021. Predicting the risk of GenX contamination in private well water using a machine-learned Bayesian network model. Journal of Hazardous Materials 411(5):125075. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jhazmat.2021.125075
Mulhern, R., and J. MacDonald Gibson. 2020. Under-sink activated carbon water filters effectively remove lead from private well water for over six months. Water 12:3584. DOI: doi:10.3390/w12123584
MacDonald Gibson, J., M. Fisher, A. Clonch, John M. MacDonald, and P. Cook. 2020. Children drinking private well water have higher blood lead than those with city water. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America 117(29):16898-16907. DOI: 10.1073/pnas.2002729117
Lockhart, S., E. Wood, and J. MacDonald Gibson. 2020. Impacts of exclusion from municipal water service on water availability: a case study. NEW SOLUTIONS: A Journal of Environmental and Occupational Health Policy 30(2):127-137. DOI: 10.1177/1048291120932913
Redmon, J. H., K. E. Levine, A. M. Aceituno, K. Litzenberger, and J. MacDonald Gibson. 2020. Lead in drinking water at North Carolina childcare centers: Piloting a citizen science-based testing strategy. Environmental Research 183: 109126. DOI: 10.1016/j.envres.2020.109126.
Leker, H., and J. MacDonald Gibson. 2018. Relationship between race and community water and sewer service in North Carolina, USA. PLoS ONE 13(3):e0193225 (pp. 1-19). DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0193225.
Stillo, F., and J. MacDonald Gibson*. 2017. Exposure to contaminated drinking water and health disparities in North Carolina. American Journal of Public Health 107(1):180-185. DOI: 10.2105/AJPH.2016.303482.
DeFelice, N., J. Johnston, and J. MacDonald Gibson*. 2016. Reducing emergency department visits for acute gastrointestinal illnesses in North Carolina (USA) by extending community water service. Environmental Health Perspectives 54(10):1583-1591. DOI: 10.1289/EHP160.
Zabinski, J. W., G. Garcia-Vargas, M. Rubio-Andrade, R. C. Fry, and J. MacDonald Gibson*. 2016. Advancing dose-response assessment methods for environmental regulatory impact analysis: a Bayesian belief network approach applied to inorganic arsenic. Environmental Science & Technology Letters 3(5):200-204.
MacDonald Gibson, J., A. Brammer, C. Davidson, T. Folley, F. Launay, and J. Thomsen, eds. 2013. Environmental Burden of Disease Assessment: A Case Study in the United Arab Emirates. Dordrecht, The Netherlands: Springer. ISBN 978-97-007-5924-4 (hard copy), 978-94-007-5925-1 (eBook). DOI 10.1007/978-94-007-5925.1. 521 pp. Available: http://www.amazon.com/Environmental-Disease-Assessment-Science-Technology/dp/940075924X