Curriculum Vitae (updated 08/2017)
I am an associate professor of anthropology at the University of California, Santa Barbara. My research on human-environment interactions draws on perspectives across disciplines and at UCSB I am a faculty affiliate in the Department of Geography, Environmental Studies Program, Environmental Humanities Initiative, Latin American and Iberian Studies, and the Interdepartmental PhD Emphasis in Environment and Society.
Since 2007, I have conducted fieldwork in the Brazilian Amazon, studying cattle raising, cowboy culture, and deforestation. This research is the topic of my book, Rainforest Cowboys. For more information on this project as well as collaborative research on road building projects and environmental governance in the Amazon, see the publications page or my Google Scholar profile.
I am working on research projects that build on my interest in understanding how cultural beliefs and practices are related to nature, animals, the environment, and processes of environmental degradation. This research examines “invisible” cultural factors that play an acknowledged yet understudied role in environmental topics and problems and seeks to connect with human dimensions and coupled human-natural systems research and policy. I am currently pursuing four lines of research related to these goals.
- Cross-cultural comparison of cattle economies, cattle cultures, and beef consumption
- Integrating culture into land use-land change frameworks, theory, and modeling
- Function and aesthetics of everyday forms of nature control and domination
- The anthropology of environmental degradation in the Brazilian Amazon, focusing on cattle raising and gold mining