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Dr Barbara Bodenhorn


I am currently engaged in an interdisciplinary exploration of environmental projects in forest communities in Mexico. With Dr. Laura Barraza, I work in two forest communities – Ixtlán de Juárez, Oaxaca (Zapotec) and San Juan Nuevo Parangaricutiro, Michoacán (Purhépecha) – both recognised as indigenous communities with the right to manage their own natural resources. They stand out for the degree of success they have enjoyed in the organisation of environmentally sound and economically competitive development strategies based on the exploitation of property held in common. The project explores the environmental knowledge of adolescents, the ways in which this influences their sense of community identity, and the ways in which local organization fosters such identity. As such, this depends on the collaboration between researchers, educational institutions, municipal, as well as communal authorities in the realisation of pre-specified objectives as well as for the organic development of activities that emerge during the course of our research. The more strictly anthropological focus includes arctic material and thus draws on a comparison between three distinct fieldsites

Research themes

Users, Consumers and Social Frameworks:

‘Fourth World’ politics (environmental and other)

Policy, Economics and Risk:

Departments and Institutes

Division of Social Anthropology:

Research Interests

‘Fourth World’ politics (environmental and other); anthropology and economic relations; names and naming; grass-roots organisational processes; decision-making; gender; temporary communities of knowledge: science and other expertises. The Arctic (north Alaska); Mexico (Oaxaca; Michoacan).