Class of 2019

Congratulations to our spring 2019 graduates! View our student award winners here.

Melissa Beresford

Postdoctoral Research Scholar
Post Doctoral Scholars
TEMPE Campus

Student Information

Graduate Student
Liberal Arts & Sciences


Melissa Beresford is a Postdoctoral Research Fellow in the School of Human Evolution and Social Change at Arizona State University. She received her Ph.D. in Anthropology at Arizona State University, her M.A. in Social Science from the University of Chicago, and her B.A. in Urban Studies and Planning from the University of California, San Diego.

As an urban cultural anthropologist, Melissa's research investigates community responses to economic inequality and resource insecurity. To date, her work has examined the cultural politics of entrepreneurship and economic development initiatives, informal and diverse urban economies, and urban water insecurity.  She is also an anthropological methodologist, focused on researching and innovating methods for qualitative data anlaysis. Her fieldwork is primarily based in Cape Town, South Africa, however she has collaborated on research in Latin America, the United States, and in cross-cultural context.

As an enthusiastic and experienced teacher, Melissa's primary teaching foci include supporting diverse students; research methods training; pedagogy and practice of diverse teaching modalities (including online); experiential learning (undergraduate research experiences, study abroad); and citizen science projects. She also teaches workshops on Qualitative Data Analysis for the National Science Foundation Research Methods in Anthropology training program and Arizona State University's Institute for Social Science Research.


Research Interests

Economic, environmental, and urban anthropology; socio-economic and racialized inequalities; entrepreneurship; econoimc development; diverse economies; water/resource inequality; ethnographic research methods; qualitative data analysis.


Google Scholar


Spring 2015
Course Number Course Title
ASM 414 Urban and Environmental Health