Migrant worldviews and emergent ecological knowledge

Project: Research project

Project Details


Socio-cultural dynamics within and between groups influence human thoughts, values, conflicts, and behaviors towards the environment and affect anthropogenic change. Environmental anthropology has demonstrated the importance of local knowledge of ecological processes to sustainable management practices, while cognitive anthropology has provided important insights into the nature, organization, and expression of culture. This proposal brings these two theoretical perspectives together to address the cultural dynamics that influence how humans relate to new environments, and in turn, how new environments influence emergent culture. The project will further build research infrastructure and train U.S. graduate students.

The objective of this mixed-method, multi-site study is to determine how the in-migration of diverse worldviews into a new environmental setting relates to conservation efforts and conflicts around scarce resources. Ethnographic methods will capture individuals' views of local socio-cultural dynamics in the study context, while cultural consensus analyses will permit quantitative comparison among and between residents based on cultural group, livelihood, and residential community. This mixed method approach ensures broader contributions to anthropological theories explaining dynamic cultural influences on human relationships to the environment in an increasingly mobile, interconnected, and multi-cultural global society. It responds to specific calls for more quantitative environmental anthropology needed to influence natural resource policies, and it also addresses the influence of migration and cultural conflict on anthropogenic environmental impacts.

This award reflects NSF's statutory mission and has been deemed worthy of support through evaluation using the Foundation's intellectual merit and broader impacts review criteria.

Effective start/end date9/1/208/31/24


  • National Science Foundation: $283,344.00


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