Guest Authors

Sebastian Abrahamsson is a postdoc at AISSR Amsterdam Institute for Social Science Research. His book, Something Happening: On the Geographies of a Mummified Body is about practices around the mummified body, such as archaeology/an excavation, radiology/body scans, museum studies/a museum exhibition, archive/X-ray plates, works of art/an art gallery.

Frank Ackerman is author of Why Do We Recycle? Markets, Values, and Public Policies (1997), Pricing the priceless: Cost-benefit analysis of environmental protection (2002), and “Climate risks and carbon prices: Revising the social cost of carbon” (2012).

Grace Akese is a PhD candidate at Memorial University. Her thesis is entitled, “Pricing electronic waste: Market making in the trade of electronic waste (e-waste) in Accra, Ghana.”

Rebecca Altman is a writer and sociologist. Her work explores the social history of chemistry, plastics, pollution and environmental legacy— what we pass from one generation to the next. She holds a PhD in Environmental Sociology from Brown University.

Mohammed Rafi Arefin is a PhD Student in the Department of Geography at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. His research interests sit at the intersection of urban geography, geographies of waste and garbage, emotional and psychoanalytic geography, and development studies

Alex V. Barnard is a Ph.D. candidate in sociology at UC Berkeley. His book, Freegans: Diving into the Wealth of Food Waste in the United States examines how activists use food waste to challenge capitalism in New York City and is now available from the University of Minnesota Press.

Caitlynn Beckett is a PhD candidate in Geography at Memorial University in St. John’s, Newfoundland, Canada. Her research focuses on the remediation of contaminated mining landscapes in Northern Canada.

Ingrid Behrsin is a PhD candidate at UC Davis. Her dissertation attends to the material and discursive construction of waste as a renewable energy source in the European Union, and investigates the ecological, economic, and political implications of this framing in the context of waste-to-energy (WTE) production.

Andrew Bishop is pursuing a bachelor’s degree in applied physics from Harvey Mudd College.

Alex Bond is an ecologist and conservation biologist based at the Natural History Museum (Tring, UK). His research covers myriad topics, but is typically centered around seabirds as sentinels of environmental condition. He uses a mix of lab, field, and analytical techniques to better understand natural and human-caused changes, including the impact of invasive species, chemical pollution, and marine debris.

Jonathan L. Clark is an associate professor of sociology at Ursinus College, where he’s also affiliated with the environmental studies department. Jon has published in the fields of animal studies and the environmental humanities. This post is based on field notes from his new research project, on roadkill, titled “Moving through a More-than-Human World.” You can email him at and follow him on Twitter @jonlclark.

Creighton Connolly is a PhD student in the University of Manchester’s geography department. His dissertation is The Environmental politics of bird’s nest production in Malaysia and Indonesia’s cityscapes.

Britt Dahlberg is a Ph.D candidate in the Department of Anthropology at Penn Arts & Sciences. Her dissertation is about Envisioning Post-Industrial Futures through Community Activism and Government Environmental Health Science.

Anne Dance is currently a ReSDA History postdoctoral fellow at Memorial University. Her research interests have led her to explore the creation, regulation, and remediation of contaminated landscapes in Canada over the past century.

Meagan Day completed her MA in Cultural Studies at Goldsmiths, University of London (’13) and her BA in Comparative American Studies at Oberlin College (’12). She is an editor for Full Stop, an online publication of literary and cultural criticism.

Katja de Vries is a PhD student in Legal Philosophy at the Vrije Universiteit Brussel (Free University of Brussels) within the Law and autonomic computing. Her research is focused on the collisions and interactions between legal and technological modes of thinking.

Kim DeWolff is a PhD candidate in the Communication and Science Studies program at the University of California, San Diego. She is writing her dissertation on the material problems of plastic waste in the ocean and blogging about related issues at Plasticzed.

Rachele Dini is an interdisciplinary scholar and early career academic whose work primarily focuses on twentieth-century fiction (particularly post-war literary avant-gardes, and the work of Don DeLillo and JG Ballard), eco-criticism, and New Materialism. She holds a PhD from University College London.

Rebecca Falkoff is an assistant professor of Italian at New York University with a research focus on modern and contemporary Italian literature, experimentalist movements, gender and sexuality, psychoanalysis, and new materialism.

David Boarder Giles writes about waste, cities, and social movements. His current projects all explore the ways in which discarded surpluses—of people, places, and things—are circulated in “global” cities. These interests draw him into a range of spaces and problems, from the twin crises of food insecurity and food waste that plague so many cities, to the alternative economies established by dumpster divers and other urban scroungers, from the spectacular “world-class” image to which many major cities aspire to the prejudice and exclusion that shape public space and criminalise the existence of the homeless who sleep on their streets. His first book, “A Mass Conspiracy to Feed People”: World Class Waste and the Forbidden Gifts of the Global City, is forthcoming with Duke University Press.

Joshua Goldstein is an Associate Professor at USC’s History and East Asian Languages and Cultures program.

Keeley Haftner is a locally-based Saskatonian artist whose practice is developing in the context of investigating value-based hierarchies. She will be pursuing her Master of Fine Arts at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago in the fall of 2014.

Britt Halvorson, Colby College, is a cultural anthropologist who has conducted long-term research in the Midwest U.S. and in Madagascar. Her work has focused on post-colonial interactions between U.S. and African Christian churches in matters of health, healing, and medicine, including the migration of Malagasy healer-evangelists to the U.S. She is currently writing a book about a 30-year-old medical aid partnership.

Gay Hawkins is a Professor at Western Sydney University. Professor Hawkins’ work on environments, natures, and cultures has been internationally recognised and important to discard studies. In 2005 she published The Ethics of Waste, a book that examined the materiality of waste and the ways in which it makes ethical claims on us. Between 2008 and 2013 Professor Hawkins worked on a major project investigating the rapid growth of bottled water markets over the last thirty years. This research is published in the book Plastic water: the social and material life of bottled water, co-authored with Emily Potter and Kane Race and published by The MIT Press in 2015. She has also done a project called ‘The Skin of Commerce’ which explored the history and politics of the relationships between plastic and food post WWII.

Mary Annaïse Heglar is Publications Director at the Natural Resources Defense Council.

Stephen Herring is an instructor in religion, geography, and humanities at Edgecombe Community College in Tarboro North Carolina (USA). He holds an M.Div. degree from Yale University (1983) and a BA in Classical Studies from the University of California at Santa Cruz (1980). In addition to his teaching duties he is also an ordained minister in the Presbyterian Church (USA).

Jordan Howell is an  Assistant Professor in the Dept. of Geography & Environment at Rowan University. He examines solid waste and energy issues in North America and Hawai’i.

Vincent F. Ialenti is a PhD student at Cornell University’s Department of Anthropology. His research explores how safety assessment experts working on Finland’s radioactive waste disposal project at Olkiluoto grappled with issues of time, death, and inspiration in their professional and personal lives.

Duane Jethro is a post-doctoral fellow at Archive and Public Culture at the University of Cape Town, and has blogged for Africa’s a Country and Material World. His scholarly work appears in journals such as Tourist Studies, Material Religion and African Diaspora.

Nils Johansson is a PhD candidate at the Department of Management and Engineering, Environmental Technology and Management, Linköping University. His research is about urban mining and landfill mining for integrated recovery and remediation in Sweden.

Arn Keeling is Full Professor in the Department of Geography at Memorial University in Newfoundland, Canada. His research and publications focus on the environmental-historical geography of Western and Northern Canada, and explore the historical and contemporary encounters of northern Indigenous communities with large-scale resource developments

Mathew Lippincott is the co-founder and Director of Production at the Public Laboratory for Open Technology and Science (PLOTS), a non-profit organization dedicated to civic science. PLOTS helps people investigate environmental concerns using DIY technologies. He is also a partner in MDML, which focuses on creating solutions for sustainable sanitation, like dry toilets and other ecological solutions to human pollution.

Samantha MacBride is an Assistant Professor at Baruch College’s School of Public Affairs at the City University of New York, and has worked with discards professionally and academically, handling and thinking about them, for nearly 20 years. She is author of Recycling Reconsidered: The Present Failure and Future Promise of Environmental Action in the United States.

Matto Mildenberger is an Assistant Professor of environmental politics at the University of California, Santa Barbara.

Adam Minter is a writer for Bloomberg View and a wide range of other publications. He is also author of Junkyard Planet: Travels in the Billion-Dollar Trash Trade. His forthcoming book, Secondhand, is due out later this year and covers the global trade in secondhand commodities.

John Mulrow is a PhD Candidate in Civil & Materials Engineering at the University of Illinois at Chicago, USA.

Michelle Murphy is a Professor in the History Department and Women and Gender Studies Institute at the University of Toronto, Director of the Technoscience Research Unit, and co-organizer, with Natasha Myers, of the Toronto Technoscience Salon.

Michael Oman-Reagan is completing a Ph.D. in the Department of Anthropology at Memorial University of Newfoundland. Her doctoral research is on the Anthropology of Space.

Shobita Parthasarathy is Professor of Public Policy and Women’s Studies, and Director of the Science, Technology, and Public Policy Program, at the University of Michigan. She studies the governance of emerging science and technology as well as the politics of evidence and expertise in policymaking, in a comparative and international perspective.

Sam Pearson writes about chemical safety and security, including proposals to update the Toxic Substances Control Act and Department of Homeland Security and U.S. EPA chemical safety and security regulations for E&E Publishing, LLC

Jesse Peterson is a PhD student in the Division of History of Science, Technology and Environment at the KTH Royal Institute of Technology in Stockholm, Sweden.  He is a part of ENHANCE and the KTH Environmental Humanities Laboratory. His PhD research concerns understanding the intersections between waste, wastelands, and water in relation to aesthetics and ethics. He holds an MSc in Environmental Humanities as well as a MFA in Creative Writing.

Catherine Phillips is a Senior Lecturer in the School of Geography at the University of Melbourne. She combines qualitative research on everyday practices with social theory to explore human-environment relations, and their implications for governance. Her recent work focuses on agrifood, discard, and urban natures. Catherine lives and works in Wurundgeri Country.

Sara B. Pritchard is a historian of technology and an environmental historian in the Department of Science and Technology Studies at Cornell University.

Verena Radulovic is an independent photographer that has worked with the electronics sector for over a decade on efforts to improve its environmental sustainability. She also currently leads the development of consumer electronic product specifications within the U.S. EPA’s ENERGY STAR program.

Joshua Reno is an Assistant Professor of Anthropology at Binghamton University. His interests share a focus on controversial modern technologies designed to solve seemingly intractable problems, from waste and climate change to disability and energy insecurity.

Ned Richardson-Little Originally from Canada, Ned Richardson-Little has published extensively on human rights. He is currently leading the research project “The Other Global Germany: Transnational Criminality and Deviant Globalization in Germany” at the University of Erfurt. 

Elizabeth F.S. Roberts is an Associate Professor in the Department of Anthropolgy at the University of Michigan. She is an ethnographer of science, medicine and technology

Susan Ross is a registered architect and Assistant Professor at Carleton University. She has worked  in the private sector, held teaching and research positions in Canadian universities, and both volunteered and been employed by local, national and international heritage organizations. In her most recent work prior to working at Carleton, she was senior conservation architect in the federal government.

Victoria Santos is a PhD Candidate in Energy & Environmental Planning, at the Federal University of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, and is a Visiting Researcher at Delft University of Technology, The Netherlands.

Yvan Schulz is a PhD candidate at Université de Neuchâtel whose research by attempts to present a complete and balanced image of the trade through the cultural, social, economic, political and ideological dimensions underlying the various ways of managing e-waste in the PRC.

Emily Astra-Jean Simmonds is a PhD candidate in the department of Science and Technology Studies at York University. Her activist research practice is primarily energized by questions about consent, exposure and colonial infrastructures, toxic sovereignties and the biopolitics of settler colonialism. Currently, her work focuses on how uranium economies and ecologies amplify and produce colonial geographies, and the various ways in which asymmetrical exposures to toxins and radiological hazards are rendered permissible. As a Métis feminist scholar she is committed to actions that support just and mutually considered livable futures. She is a member of the: Civic Laboratory for Environmental Action Research (CLEAR) based in St. John’s NFLD; and the Digital Research Ethics Collaboratory (DREC); The Politics of Evidence Working Group (PEWG); and the Technoscience Research Unit (TRU) in Toronto, Ontario.

Ashwini Srinivasamohan is a Master of Environmental Science candidate at Yale University’s School of Forestry & Environmental Studies. Her research is centered around middle class attitudes toward waste and their influence on interclass dynamics and urban governance in Chennai, India.

Sophia Stamatopoulou-Robbins is an Assistant Professor of Anthropology at Bard College. Based on over two years of fieldwork in the West Bank, her current book project focuses on the intersections of garbage, sewage and waste markets with the changing nature of local governance and occupation in post-Oslo Palestine.

Trang X. Ta is a lecturer in Medical Anthropology and Convenor of MA Program in Culture, Health, and Medicine at Australian National University.

Aaron Vansintjan is a MSc candidate for Renewable Resources with Environment at McGill University. His Master’s thesis focuses on the case of food banks in Canada.

Sarah Wanenchak is a PhD student at the University of Maryland, College Park. Her current research focuses on contentious politics and communications technology in a global context, particularly the role of emotion mediated by technology as a mobilizing force.

Alex Zahara is a Master of Environmental Studies candidate at Queen’s University in Kingston, Ontario and a member of the Canada’s Waste Flow research team. He is interested in studying the role of waste in colonialism and structural violence.

Carl Zimring is a Professor of Sustainability Studies at Pratt Institute. He is the author of Cash for your trash: Scrap recycling in America and Clean and White: A History of Environmental Racism in the United States.

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