Associate Research Professor and Research Fellow
Ph.D., Geography, University of Colorado, Boulder
Dr. Ronald E. Cossman is an Associate Research Professor and Research Fellow at the Social Science Research Center at Mississippi State University, Principal Investigator for the Northeast Mississippi Area Health Education Center and P.I. for the Mississippi Center for Health Workforce.
Dr. Cossman focuses his research on the spatial analysis and visualization of health conditions. He uses Geographic Information Systems (GIS) and data visualization technologies to investigate the relationships between social and environmental factors and resulting health outcomes such as death rate patterns and chronic illness patterns.
His research has appeared in the Population Health Metrics (“Correlating pharmaceutical data with a national health survey as a proxy for estimating rural population health” –http://www.pophealthmetrics.com/content/8/1/25), American Journal of Public Health(“Preliminary Evidence for an Emerging Non-Metropolitan Mortality Penalty in the U.S.” and “Persistent Clusters of Mortality in the U.S.” and “The Nonmetropolitan Mortality Penalty – Is It Cause Specific?”), Population Research and Policy Review(“Reconsidering the Rural-Urban Continuum in Rural Health Research: A Test of Stable Relationships Using Mortality as a Health Measure”), the International Journal of Health Geographics (“A Brief Visual Primer for the Mapping of Mortality Trend Data”), and Health & Place (“Mapping High or Low Mortality Places Across Time in the United States: A Research Note on a Health Visualization and Analysis Project”) and Journal of Maps (“Using maps to monitor at-risk geographic areas of heart disease prevalence in the United States” – http://www.journalofmaps.com/crossrefMap.php?mid=1130).
He has also authored several policy papers and policy briefs for the Mississippi Health Policy Research Center (http://www.healthpolicy.msstate.edu/) including “Leading Causes of Death Among Children in Mississippi,” “Impacts of Primary Seat Belt Laws on Motor Vehicle Deaths Among Mississippi’s Youth”, “Motor Vehicle Injuries and Deaths Among Children in Mississippi: The Role of a DUI Child Endangerment Law” and “Underage Drinking and Driving in Mississippi: A Review of the Issue and Synthesis of the Literature.” His dissertation was “Secular Trends and Spatial Clusters of Inequality in U.S. Metropolitan Areas, 1970 to 1990.”
Dr. Cossman earned his bachelor’s degree in economics at the University of North Florida in Jacksonville, FL (1992), his master’s degree in demography and population studies from Florida State University in Tallahassee, FL (1993), and his doctoral degree in geography from the University of Colorado, Boulder (2001). His dissertation title was “Secular Trends and Spatial Clusters of Inequality in U.S. Metropolitan Areas, 1970 to 1990.”
Dr. Cossman’s community service is through Starkville in Motion (http://starkvilleinmotion.org/), a grass-roots organization promoting the development and maintenance of bike lanes, sidewalks, trails and improving pedestrian and bicyclist safety in Starkville Mississippi and Oktibbeha County. He authored the funded $1.5 million Lynn Lane multi-use path grant on behalf of the City of Starkville. He was co-author for the funded $280,000 Safe Routes to Schools grant through the Mississippi Department of Transportation on behalf of the Starkville School District.