Project Team

The team is based partly at the University of Leeds and partly at the LMU Munich – when not out in the field, that is…

Graham Huggan

Principal Investigator

Graham Huggan is Professor of English at the University of Leeds, where his research straddles three fields: postcolonial studies, tourism studies and environmental humanities. He recently directed an international doctoral program (ITN) in environmental humanities involving the University of Leeds (lead partner), KTH, LMU and the Deutsches Museum, and he has a longstanding interest in conservation and other environmental issues, reflected in published work such as Nature’s Saviours: Celebrity Conservationists in the Age of Television (Routledge, 2013) and, most recently, Colonialism, Culture, Whales: The Cetacean Quartet (Bloomsbury, 2018). 

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Katie Ritson

Principal Investigator

Katie Ritson is a scholar of comparative literature with a particular interest in Northern Europe. Katie studied German, Comparative Literature, and Nordic Philology at the University of Cambridge and Ludwig-Maximilian-University Munich, completing her doctorate in Munich in 2016. She is based at the Rachel Carson Center for Environment & Society, LMU Munich. She is currently a coordinator for the Ecocritical Network for Scandinavian Studies (ENSCAN) and a member of the board of the International Consortium of Environmental History Organisations (ICEHO).

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George Holmes

Senior project member

George Holmes is Associate Professor of Conservation and Society at the University of Leeds. A geographer by background, his work looks at the conservation movement, particularly the values and practices of conservationists, and at how conservation affects, and is affected by, people living in and around protected areas. He has conducted work on the social impacts of conservation and the politics of private protected areas in Latin America, and on rewilding across Europe, and is part of the team behind a large-scale survey of conservationists’ values. He is a member of the editorial board of the journals Conservation Biology and Oryx

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Pavla Šimková

Postdoctoral Researcher

Pavla Šimková is a historian with an interest in East Central European
and American environmental history, currently focusing on transnational
environmental history of the Bavarian Forest and Šumava. She studied
American cultural history, English literature, and political science at
the Masaryk University in Brno, Czech Republic, and at LMU Munich where
she received her doctorate in 2019. Pavla worked as a research associate
at the Rachel Carson Center from 2012 until 2018. She has been a
co-author of the Biographisches Lexikon zur Geschichte der böhmischen
at the Collegium Carolinum in Munich since 2011. She is currently
one of the editors of the journal WerkstattGeschichte.

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Eveline de Smalen

Postdoctoral Researcher

Eveline de Smalen is a literary scholar who works on literatures of coastal and riverine landscapes, with a particular interest in the transformative capacities of the imagination and the interactions between the realm of the imagination and that of policy and politics. She studied English and comparative literature at Utrecht University and completed her PhD in Environmental Humanities at the Rachel Carson Center in 2019. 

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Jonathan Carruthers-Jones

Postdoctoral Researcher

Jonathan’s research interests are focused around understanding the complex issues which surround human-nature interactions in wild spaces and how they relate to the long-term success of nature conservation. He is a member of the IUCN-WCPA Mountains Biome Network, a postgraduate fellow of the Royal Geographical Society and a member of the wilderness working group of French IUCN « Wilderness et nature férale ».

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Christof Mauch

Senior Project Advisor

Christof Mauch is director of the Rachel Carson Center and Chair in American Culture and Transatlantic Relations at LMU Munich. His research spans global environmental history, urban environmental history, and the history of national parks. He is the editor together with Marco Heuric of the collection Urwald der Bayern: Geschichte, Politik und Natur im Nationalpark Bayerischer Wald (2020) and of Slow Hope: Rethinking Ecologies of Crisis and Fear (2019).

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