Lucas C. Ward
Visiting Assistant Professor, Environmental Science and Environmental Studies
B.A. Whitman College
M.A., Ph.D. University of Colorado - Boulder
Tyler Hall 304
Office Hours: Wednesday 9 a.m. - 11 a.m.; by appointment
As a human geographer trained in the multidisciplinary field of political ecology, I understand local instances of environmental change to be rooted to local- regional-, and global-scale political economic process. I am especially interested in how different people interpret and respond to environmental change and to policies and projects intended to regulate it.
While I am interested how, why, and to what effects development and conservation projects and policies unfold differently in different parts of the world, my main areas of regional expertise are South America (especially the Paraguay River/La Plata River basin) and the American West.
My fieldwork in Paraguay focuses on two related processes: 1) How global models of good environmental governance – specifically, “Integrated Resource Management”(IRM) – get translated into action by governmental and non-governmental resource management professionals in a place like Paraguay; 2) How the indigenous Yshyr (“eesh-eer”) and mestizo residents of Paraguay’s portion of the Pantanal Wetlands (look for Bahía Negra, Paraguay on the map) experience their country’s transition towards this market-oriented approach to environmental rule-making as it relates to water laws and management of public spaces (national parks).
I use mixed methods in my fieldwork, including ethnographic field methods, participatory risk mapping, Q method, factor and cluster analysis, and case study approaches.
- ESC 380 – Externalities, Exclusion, and Environmental Economics
- ESC 208 – Introduction to Geographical Information Systems
- ESC 380 – Regional Geography of Landscape Change
- ESC 281 – Energy and Society
- ESC ??? – Science, Policy, and the Environment
What is your favorite class to teach and why?
Any Regional Geography Course and International Development and Conservation.
What is on your iPod?
No iPod → smart phone. I’ve got the new Gillian Welch and David Rawlins album (Harrow & the Harvest) on there, The Best of Fela Kuti, El Michaels Affair (Enter the 37th Chamber), Hello Nasty by the Beasties, a little Widespread Panic (Space Wrangler), Workingman’s Dead, and Harvest (Neil Young).
What are you currently reading?
I’m currently reading William Doolittle’s Canal Irrigation in Prehistoric Mexico: The Sequence of Technological Change, some Robert Frost and Tania Li’s The Will to Improve.
What do you do outside of class?
Talk to and pursue my two-year-old daughter, cook and eat dinner, play music, hike, fly fish, disc golf, fiddle around with maps.
What is your favorite getaway location?
Dillon, MT - the Beaverhead and Big Hole Rivers.
What activities or campus organizations are actively involved with?
Bike RMC, Green Group, Yellowstone River Research Center.