My main interests relate to questions of sustainability at different scales. As co-director of UCL's Centre for the Anthropology of Sustainability I am especially concerned with using ethnography and anthropological theory to rethink established ideas and approaches towards sustainability. My work is grounded in my research in Amazonian indigenous ethnology, global forest governance, conservation and environmentalism, and the (cosmo-)politics of human relationships with the living environment.
My doctoral work at Cambridge University (2003-7) was based on field research among Carib-speaking hunter gatherers and swidden horticulturalists (Trio, Wayana and Akuriyo) of north-eastern Amazonia (Suriname and French Guiana), and took as its principal focus indigenous Amazonian leadership in relation to native ideas of wealth.
During research fellowships at the Musée du Quai Branly, Paris (2007-8), Oxford Brookes (2008-9) and Oxford University (2009-10), I explored comparative and theoretical dimensions of native Amazonian property relations, and I carried out further research on indigenous perspectives on environmental conservation.
In my work at the Graduate Institute, Geneva (2010-12) I studied the globalization of forest governance and conservation and the ‘greening’ of development, focusing on the UN-REDD ‘readiness’ programme underway in Suriname.