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A Research Agenda for Environmental Geopolitics

Edited by Shannon O’Lear, University of Kansas, US
Challenging the mainstream view of the environment as either threatening or valuable, this book considers how geographic knowledge can be applied to offer a more nuanced understanding. Framed within geopolitics and using a range of methodologies, the chapters encapsulate different approaches to demonstrate how selective forms of knowledge, measurement, and spatial focus both embody and stabilise power, shaping how people perceive and respond to changing features of human-environment interactions.
Extent: c 200 pp
Hardback Price: $120.00 Web: $108.00
Publication Date: March 2020
ISBN: 978 1 78897 123 2
Availability: Not yet published
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  • eISBN: 978 1 78897 124 9

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  • Environment
  • Environmental Geography
  • Environmental Governance and Regulation
  • Environmental Politics and Policy
  • Geography
  • Environmental Geography
  • Human Geography
  • Political Geography and Geopolitics
  • Politics and Public Policy
  • Environmental Governance and Regulation
  • Environmental Politics and Policy
  • Political Geography and Geopolitics
  • Political Theory
Elgar Research Agendas outline the future of research in a given area. Leading scholars are given the space to explore their subject in provocative ways, and map out the potential directions of travel. They are relevant but also visionary.

Challenging the mainstream view of the environment as either threatening or valuable, this book considers how geographic knowledge can be applied to offer a more nuanced understanding. Framed within geopolitics and using a range of methodologies, the chapters encapsulate different approaches to demonstrate how selective forms of knowledge, measurement, and spatial focus both embody and stabilise power, shaping how people perceive and respond to changing features of human-environment interactions.

With key case studies analysed throughout, this will be a timely read for geography and environmental studies scholars. It will also be beneficial to those studying political science and regional studies, as well as those working in NGOs and think tanks.
‘This book offers refreshing, new perspectives on environmental geopolitics that go far beyond established concerns with global environmental governance and local political ecology. In addition to shedding light on how politics influences the way we manage the environment, O’Lear and contributors reveal the myriad ways in which politics shapes how we understand and encounter the socio-natural world in which we live.’
– Philip Steinberg, Durham University, UK

‘This book maps out new research terrain by showing how geopolitics has environmental dimensions that go well beyond the national state and international relations. The rich chapters present case studies that put flesh on the bones of the programmatic arguments of Shannon O’Lear.’
– Noel Castree, Manchester University, England, and the University of Wollongong, Australia
Contributors include: L. Acton, B. Blue, L.M. Campbell, S. Dalby, O. Evrard, C.A. Fox, N.J. Gray, M. Himley, C. Johnson, F. Lasserre, P. Le Billon, M. Mostafanezhad, S. O’Lear, L. Olman, B. Schneider, L. Shykora, C. Sneddon, J. Swann-Quinn, M. Tadaki, P.-L. Têtu, S.D. VanDeveer



Contents

1. Environmental geopolitics: an introduction to questions and research approaches
Shannon O’Lear

Part I: Interpreting and Measuring the Environment
2. Getting the measure of nature: the inconspicuous geopolitics of environmental measurement
Brendon Blue and Marc Tadaki

3. Science, territory, and the geopolitics of high seas conservation
Noella J. Grey, Lisa M. Campbell and Leslie Acton

4. The geopolitics of environmental global mapping services: an analysis of Global Forest Watch
Birgit Schneider and Lynda Olman

Part II: Power, Knowledge and Human-Environment Interactions
5. Conflicts, commodities and the environmental geopolitics of supply chains
Philippe Le Billon and Lauren Shykora

6. Underground geopolitics: science, race and territory in Peru during the late nineteenth century
Matthew Himley

7. Local knowledges and environmental governance: making space for alternative futures in the Arctic circumpolar region and the Mekong River Basin
Coleen A. Fox and Christopher Sneddon

Part III: Overcoming Selective Spatial Focus
8. The geopolitics of transportation in the melting Arctic
Frédéric Lasserre and Pierre-Louis Têtu

9. Environmental geopolitics of rumor: the sociality of uncertainty during Northern Thailand’s smoky season
Mary Mostafanezhad and Olivier Evrard

10. Digging deep: crossing scale in the Georgian mining industry
Jesse Swann-Quinn

11. Looking Ahead
Shannon O’Lear, Simon Dalby, Corey Johnson, Stacy VanDeveer

Index