Institute of Social and Cultural Anthropology

Dr Laura Rival is a Lecturer in Anthropology and Development whose research interests include issues in Amerindian conceptualizations of nature and society; historical ecology; the impact of national development policies on indigenous peoples; learning and knowledge acquisition; and Latin American identity politics.

Laura's has approached ethnographically the political ecology of biodiversity conservation in a number of hotspots home to indigenous peoples, in particular among the Chachi. She has also explored the links between cultural and biological diversity among the Huaorani and the Makushi. She is currently researching payments for environmental services in a number of indigenous communities in Ecuador, Brazil and Guyana. Finally, she is working on a more theoretical project, which addresses the role of anthropology in the new science of sustainability.