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Melissa J Widhalm

Melissa Widhalm is the project manager for Useful to Usable (U2U), a multi-disciplinary USDA-funded project aimed at improving the resilience and profitability of Midwestern farms amid future climate change. She manages the day-to-day activities of U2U, and coordinates with researchers at 10 partner universities.

Melissa holds a Bachelor of Science degree in meteorology from Northern Illinois University (2004), and a Master of Science degree in natural resource sciences with an emphasis in climate impacts from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln (2006). Her interests are in applied and multi-disciplinary research, outreach, and education.

Recent Publications

  • Knutson, C.L., Haigh, T., Hayes, M.J., Widhalm, M., Nothwehr, J., Kleinschmidt, M., (2011). Farmer perceptions of sustainable agriculture practices and drought risk reduction in Nebraska, USA, Renewable Agriculture and Food Systems26(3): 255-266.
  • Hayes, M., Svoboda, M., Wall, N., Widhalm, M. (2011). The Lincoln Declaration on Drought Indices: Universal Meteorological Drought Index Recommended, Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society(BAMS)92: 485-488.
  • Ding, Y., Hayes, M., Widhalm, M. (2011). Measuring Economic Impacts of Drought: A Review and Discussion, Disaster Prevention and Management20(4).

Selected Publications

Widhalm, M., Prokopy, L., Angel, J., & Todey, D. (2013). An Integrated Approach to Building Usable Decision Tools for the Agricultural Community.

Prokopy, L., Widhalm, M., Angel, J., Haigh, T., Mase, A., & Todey, D. (2013). If we build it, will they come?: Incorporating survey results of the agricultural community into climate-based decision support tools.

Loy, A., Hobbs, J., Arbuckle Jr., J., Morton, L., Prokopy, L., Haigh, T., . . . Widhalm, M. (2013). Farmer Perspectives on Agriculture and Weather Variability in the Corn Belt: A Statistical Atlas. (CSCAP 0153-2013). Retrieved from

Takle, E., Anderson, C., Andresen, J., Angel, J., Elmore, R., Gramig, B., . . . Widhalm, M. (in press). Climate Forecasts for Corn Producer Decision-Making.

Prokopy, L., Haigh, T., Mase, A., Angel, J., Hart, C., Knutson, C., . . . Widhalm, M. (2013). Agricultural Advisors: A Receptive Audience for Weather and Climate Information? 5, 162-167. Retrieved from

Arbuckle Jr., J., Prokopy, L., Haigh, T., Hobbs, J., Knoot, T., Knutson, C., . . . Widhalm, M. (2013). Corn Belt Farmers and Climate Change: Beliefs, Perceived Risk, and Support for Action. 114(4), 943-950. Retrieved from

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