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Project Collaborator

Jake Kosek

Associate Professor of Human Geography University of California, Berkeley


Jake Kosek’s research focuses on nature, politics, and difference, using conceptual insights from geography, anthropology, science studies, and theories of history to develop new approaches to natural history as both an object of critical inquiry and a conceptual tool. Through fine-grained, multi-sited ethnography and detailed archival research, he examines manifestations of natural history in the present, exploring contemporary taxonomies and varieties of nature, charting their resonance and discord with fossilized formations of prior natures. This includes: a social political history of the swarm, exploring how the flow of knowledge between bees and human collective behavior has remade discourses of modern citizenship and populations; an investigation of the biopolitics of criminality, weaving 18th- and 19th-century concepts of nature into contemporary bio-political discourses of law, race and justice; and a natural history of nanotechnology. Kosek is co-author of Race, Nature and the Politics of Difference (Duke University Press, 2003), which explores the intersections of critical theories of race and nature, and Understories: The Political Life of Forests in Northern New Mexico (Duke University Press, 2006).

To learn more about Jake Kosek's research and publications, please visit his profile page at UC Berkeley Geography.

Featured Project

Engineered Worlds II

2016 – 2017


Engineered Worlds III: Terraformations

Phytoplankton bloom in the Barents Sea

Engineered Worlds III: Terraformations

A group of historians, geographers, anthropologists, environmental artists, and security and science studies experts developed new theories and methodologies to assess the social ramifications of “engineered ecologies.”

Engineered Worlds III: Terraformations is the concluding chapter in a multiyear project on assessing anthropogenic environments and planetary conditions. Engineered Worlds interrogates the implications of a world where ecologies everywhere have been effected by human industry, and where new...