*** Extended deadline to apply for the following course: August 15 (but please let us know ASAP if you are interested to attend)
Ph.D. course, Debating (Rural) Development and the Environment across the global North and South (5 credits) at the Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Uppsala. The entire course period will be August 19 – September 6 with half day classes to be held from September 2– 6 in Uppsala, Sweden. The rest of the time is for reading and writing on your own. The course will
Discuss key debates on development in the global North and South, with particular attention to issues relating to the environment.
Through a comparative north-south approach, the course will focus on how rural development practice has evolved over the past half century and the conceptual underpinnings of these shifts, while providing students tools to undertake a critical analysis of how rural development functions in practice.
We will discuss theories and trajectories of development. The issues discussed include modernization and the will to improve, the role of the state, civil society and development organizations, governmentality, the institutional turn and the turn to markets, finance, management and good governance, global development regimes and feminist critiques.
An important part of the course is for you to be able to develop your thinking in your area of study and to be able to discuss that with the lecturers. In order to facilitate that, and to tailor the course to you as participants, you need to send a one pager description of your work/research and a few lines on what you would like to get from the course. To apply, please email this to Harry Fischer (firstname.lastname@example.org) and copy Seema Arora Jonsson (Seema.Arora.Jonsson@slu.se) Deadline to register is August 15. Course organiser and teacher: Seema Arora Jonsson, Professor, Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences (SLU). Teachers: Harry Fischer, Adam Pain
Kindly check the link below for more information on the content of the session : The Slow Violence of Israeli Settler-Colonialism and the Political Ecology of Ethnic Cleansing in the West Bank
This research uses the concept of ‘slow violence ‘ in a Palestinian village to explore the political ecology of the Israeli settlers-colonial paradigm, and its relationship to the politics of corruption of a curtailed neo-patrimonial entity, namely the Palestinian Authority. Slow violence is violence that manifests gradually and often invisibly, in contrast to spectacular violence that more frequently garners media and political attention. My research explores and maps out the structure of slow violence in Palestine, where the “de-development” politics of the Palestinian National Authority and the Israeli settler-colonial enterprise converge. It addresses a significant scholarly gap in that attention to these issues focus almost exclusively on violence as a spectacle, overlooking the centrality of nature as a productive political and developmental space in settler colonial discourse and practice. Here I focus on three aspects of the slow violence of settler colonialism and its relationship to political ecology: the unleashing of wild boars into Palestinian villages; the uprooting of olive trees and continuous destruction of other crops; and the relocation of Israeli toxic waste industries to the West Bank, which includes the dumping of settlement waste onto Palestinian villages. All these practices transform the meanings of security and stability for Palestinians, as notions of Patriarchal (de)development reduce Palestinian politics of liberation into politics of corruption, perpetuating it as the only paradigm of Palestinian Political agency . https://isaconf.confex.com/isaconf/forum2020/webprogrampreliminary/Symposium562.html
Society for Applied Anthropology (SfAA) annual meeting
March 17 – 21 2020 in Albuquerque, NM
There has recently been a great rise in public awareness over the health effects of exposure to Per- and Polyfluoroalkyl Substances (PFAS) – often called “Forever Chemicals” because they do not degrade in the environment and persistently remain and accumulate in the human body. Nearly five thousand of these industrial chemicals have been used for decades in the production of a vast range of products. Exposure to these toxins has been potentially linked to kidney and liver disease, certain cancers, and numerous other serious conditions. There is much concern over PFAS in drinking water systems and, more recently, in our food supply.
A growing number of states are moving to enact strict standards limiting PFAS contamination. In response to pressure, the EPA and the FDA have taken steps to address the widespread presence of PFAS in drinking water and food. The CDC and other agencies are working to better understand health risks. This summer has seen a proliferation of news stories on PFAS contamination and community responses to protect themselves.
This session will consider the significance of the growing concern over contamination from PFAS and related toxic chemicals: How is this public awareness being translated into action? How are applied anthropologists participating in these efforts?
Two of the papers will discuss public response and environmental activism in eastern North Carolina after revelations two years ago that a Chemours (Dupont) plant had been releasing GenX fluoroethers into the Cape Fear River for at least a decade. The river is the source of drinking water for more 300,000 people.
We seek 3 or 4 papers from researchers working in similar settings where communities are confronting chemical contamination in their water and food supply through activism, citizen science, lawsuits, and/or media campaigns. Questions the papers might address include:
What strategies are organizers using to raise public awareness and form effective coalitions and partnerships?
How are they engaging policy-makers and state agencies to hold polluting industries accountable?
What challenges do groups face in this period of deregulation of environmental protection and science denial?
What are the “environmental justice” dimensions of race, socioeconomic status, and other structural factors in the political ecology of chemical contamination?
How are medical and environmental testing results perceived and challenged by effected communities?
How does the ubiquitous presence of “forever chemicals” in the products of daily life influence risk perception?
Does this moment of PFAS awareness have broader implications in the public and political discourse on environmental protection?
Organizer: Dr. William L. Alexander, Associate Professor of Cultural Anthropology and Anthropology Department Chair, University of North Carolina Wilmington
Jessica Hope is a Vice-Chancellor’s Research Fellow at the University of Bristol and Chair of the Developing Areas Research Group (DARG) of the Royal Geographical Society (RGS). Her research spans human geography, development studies and political ecology and addresses questions of socio-environmental change in response to climate change. Her current project, funded by an RGS Environment & Sustainability Grant, investigates reiterations of sustainable development in Bolivia, as promoted by the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
Momentum is gathering behind bids to make academia more diverse and equal. Part of this is about better recognising care responsibilities, which for me personally is about childcare. Since having my two year old, I have been increasingly involved in work to better recognise the challenges facing academics with children, for example how to negotiate career breaks or do fieldwork. In this blog, however, I want to write a personal and positive account of how good fieldwork with children can be, when well supported. I hope that this offers some support and encouragement for those wondering what they can manage or ask for and that it contributes to widening conversations about academic lives.
I have now been to Bolivia twice with my child. First, during my maternity leave when she was 9 months old (for 2 months) and secondly, in April when she was two (for a month). Both trips were great and I would deem them a success, both in terms of collecting data and as family time. In this brief blog, I’ll focus on the most recent trip and write about three key things – being supported economically; the practicalities of travel with a toddler; and the positives for my child.
This recent trip with my duaghter was much more relaxed than the first, in terms of feeling able to spend my funding on childcare costs. I have a Vice-Chancellor’s Research Fellowship at the University of Bristol and these come with £5,000 research funds per year. This money is for my project and I secured approval to use some of it to pay for my daughters travel costs and those of my sister, who left her life in Berlin for a month to help me with Evie. Following conversations at the RGS and within DARG, this time around I felt much more justified in asking for (and spending) money on Bella and my daughters trip. The first important part of this was that I could choose the best care arrangements for my child. Bolivian childcare infrastructure is not ideal for an English-speaking foreigner, especially one moving between three fieldsites whilst there. Settling young children into nurseries is also no small thing wherever you are and the thought of putting Evie in a new nursery each week filled me with dread (I will, however, put her into a nursery when I go on fieldwork to Canada later in the year). Instead, the worries about having my toddler with me in Bolivia (and leaving her whilst I worked) was greatly reduced because she was with my sister – someone we both know and love. The second important part of being supported economically stems from uprooting Bella and my daughters lives for a month. It was a big deal for them to come to Bolivia for me but what helped make this a positive and happy time for us, and not just a productive time for me, was that I had the funding to cover our costs and live securely and happily whilst there.
For this short tip, I went to 3 field sites and carefully planned for heat, mosquitos and altitude. In terms of practicalities, my big take home point from doing fieldwork with Evie is book an apartment. Being stuck in a tiny hotel room made our first trip stressful and strange upon arrival. However, this time we had space. We could keep to my daughters routines, we could cook and, most importantly, we had a lovely home environment in each place. We could put my daughter to bed and have time to ourselves before going to sleep (20 minutes later) and our apartments offered some breathing space from all the newness and work (for everyone). Finally, I want it in print that I got strong. Really strong. I took one big hold-all for me and my child. I had a dictaphone, a tripod, my phone, some notepads and about 2 outfits. The rest of the bag was filled with stickers, books, soft toys and the clothes she needed for both the heat of the lowlands and the cold of La Paz. The bag was akin to a small garden shed. In addition to carrying a shed, I had a buggy and, ofcourse, a toddler. She was amazing during the trip but often wanted carried when in a bus station or busy airport at night. I couldn’t refuse and so would find myself carrying a huge bag and a toddler, up and down the Andes. In case my sister reads this, I should also come clean that option two was that I had the child and a smaller bag, whilst Bella carried everything else and pushed the buggy (thanks Bella).
I want to end by saying that this trip has scored high, in terms of lovely time spent with my sister and child. Some of our evenings together were magic – playing games, making masks or (endlessly) sticking stickers. I loved our breakfasts – sat together eating porridge before heading out on our separate adventures. My daughter missed her Dad (and he missed her terribly) but apart from that, I think it was a really positive experience for her. She experienced new places and worlds, she realised more about different languages and sounds. She tried new foods. She is definitely more confident as a result (not so good when she’s happy to run off at a busy market) but, most importantly, as the trip went on all that was different became less strange and more normal for her and it feels like her world has widened.
The full text can be found here. In March 2019, German-speaking scientists and scholars calling themselves Scientists for Future, published a statement in support of the youth protesters in Germany, Austria, and Switzerland (Fridays for Future, Klimastreik/Climate Strike), verifying the scientific evidence that the youth protestors refer to. In this article, they provide the full text of the statement, including the list of supporting facts (in both English and German) as well as an analysis of the results and impacts of the statement. Furthermore, they reflect on the challenges for scientists and scholars who feel a dual responsibility: on the one hand, to remain independent and politically neutral, and, on the other hand, to inform and warn societies of the dangers that lie ahead.
Dear POLLEN members and friends
(with apologies for X-posting),
Greetings and welcome to a new POLLEN update. A mid-summer newsletter for some, and a mid-winter newsletter for others! We are happy to have received such a great number of interesting new publications and opportunities, which have been inspiring for us to read. We hope everyone enjoys reading this month’s newsletter and we thank everyone who sent us contributions.
A pdf version of the newsletter can be found here.
The organizing committee of the
Third Biennial Conference of the Political Ecology Network (POLLEN) will soon
be circulating a call for proposals for organized sessions, workshops and
exhibitions for next POLLEN conference (#POLLEN20). The conference,
titled Contested Natures: Power, Possibility, Prefiguration, will be
held in Brighton, UK on 24-26 June 2020, hosted by the ESRC STEPS Centre
(IDS/SPRU, University of Sussex) and The Political Ecology Network (POLLEN)
Secretariat, and Radical Futures at the University of Brighton, with
support from the BIOSEC project and SIID at the University of Sheffield. For
inquiries about co-hosting or getting involved, please email POLLEN@sussex.ac.uk.
Belcher, Oliver, Patrick Bigger, Ben Neimark, and Cara
Kennelly. (2019) “Hidden carbon costs of the “everywhere war”: Logistics,
geopolitical ecology, and the carbon boot‐print of the US military.”
Transactions of the Institute of British Geographers. https://rgs-ibg.onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/tran.12319
Dunlap, Alexander. (2019) Renewing Destruction: Wind Energy
Development, Conflict and Resistance in a Latin American Context, London:
Rowman & Littlefield.
Dunlap A. (2019) Book Review: Jaume Franquesa. Power
Struggles: Dignity, Value, and The Renewable Energy Frontier in Spain.
Interface: a journal for and about social movements 11: 228-231.
Harris, M.L. and Carter, E.D. 2019.
Muddying the waters: A political ecology of mosquito-borne disease in coastal
Ecuador. Health & Place, 57: 330-338. DOI:
Hennings, A., 2019. From Bullets to Banners and Back Again?
The Ambivalent Role of Ex-combatants in Contested Land Deals in Sierra Leone. Africa
Spectrum, 54(1), pp.22-43. https://doi.org/10.1177/0002039719848511
Koot, S. and Büscher, B. (2019). Giving land
(back)? Dwelling, indigeneity and the ontological politics of the South
Kalahari Bushmen land claim in South Africa. Journal of Southern African
Studies: 2019 – Koot and Buscher – Giving Land (Back)
Lai, H.L., 2019. Situating community
energy in development history: Place-making and identity politics in the
Taromak 100% green energy tribe initiative, Taiwan. Geoforum, 100,
Lund, J.F., Amanzi, N., Baral, S., Basnyat, B., Chhetri, B., Eilenberg,
M., Hansen, C., Lund, C., Mbeyale, G., Meilby, H. and Ngaga, Y., 2019. Towards
Participatory Forestry: Policy Briefs-Copenhagen Centre for Development
Research, University of Copenhagen. Policy Brief, 1(May).
Nightingale, A.J., Eriksen, S., Taylor, M., Forsyth, T.,
Pelling, M., Newsham, A., Boyd, E., Brown, K., Harvey, B., Jones, L. and Bezner
Kerr, R., 2019. Beyond Technical Fixes: climate solutions and the great
derangement. Climate and Development, pp.1-10
Ramcilovic-Suominen, S., Lovric, M., Mustalahti, I. 2019. Mapping
policy actor networks and their interests in the FLEGT Voluntary Partnership
Agreement in Lao PDR. World Development 118: 128-148. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.worlddev.2019.02.011
Sullivan, S. 2019Reading ‘Earth Incorporated’ through Caliban and
the Witch, pp. 119-134 in Barbagallo, C., Beuret, N. and
Harvie, D. (eds.) Commoning
with Silvia Federici and George Caffentzis. London: Pluto Press.
Tănăsescu, M., 2019. Restorative ecological practice: The case of the
European Bison in the Southern Carpathians, Romania. Geoforum.
I hope you might be interested in the international
conference STREAMS. Transformative Environmental Humanities we are
organizing at the Environmental Humanities Laboratory in Stockholm (5-8 August
You can find the call for Contributions through this link. Please feel free to spread the
call among your contacts. I hope to see many of you in Stockholm next year!
Upcoming conference: Political Ecology in Asia 2019: Plural
Knowledge and Contested Development in a More-Than-Human World
On 10-11 October 2019, a conference on Political Ecology in
Asia will be held in the Faculty of Political Science, Chulalongkorn
University, Thailand. Keynotes for the conference are Lyla Mehta (Institute of
Development Studies, UK) and Thanes Wongyannava (Thammasart University,
Thailand). Themes to be covered by the conference range from: hydrosocial
rivers and their politics; to interspecies cohabitations in Asia; to reshaping
governance and justice in conservation.
The conference is co-organized between the Center for Social
Development Studies (CSDS), Chulalongkorn University; the Research Institute on
Contemporary Southeast Asia (IRASEC); the French Research Institute for
Sustainable Development (IRD); the French Institute of Pondicherry (IFP); and
IRN-SustainAsia; and in collaboration with POLLEN.
Leah Horowitz, professor of Human
Ecology at the University of Wisconsin was interviewed in a recent (7/4/19)
podcast from the Women’s Liberation Radio News that discusses climate change’s
impacts on women, and their responses (excerpts from the interview with Leah
Horowitz are included about halfway through): https://soundcloud.com/wlrn-media/wlrn-edition-39-women-climate-change
by Maria Federica Palestino, Simona Quagliano and Elena Vetromile
In the wake of the Fridays for Future movement, students are taking the lead in stirring change towards climate change adaptation & mitigation. This is a short account of a project in Naples that put students’ aspirations, questions and demands at center stage.