The study of indigenous cultures and their interactions with local environments can inform our understanding of issues related to environmental conservation, resource management and sustainable development.
This intimate understanding of local ecosystems is in danger of disappearing due to the unprecedented rate of culture and language loss in indigenous communities.
With partial funding from the Government of British Columbia, the Faculty of Arts has appointed Wade Davis as the Chair in Cultures and Ecosystems at Risk at the University of British Columbia. As a renowned researcher and founding Explorer-in-Residence at the National Geographic Society, Davis combines his deep understanding of environmental studies and anthropology with international advocacy for the conservation and restoration of cultures and ecosystems in danger of extinction.
At UBC, Davis works as a research associate with the Museum of Anthropology and teaches an introductory anthropology course, which draws on case studies and narratives from his experiences throughout the world, inspiring students to become critical thinkers and stewards of culture and ecosystems. As part of his tenure, Davis also oversees several doctoral students and conducts research activities in the field that focus on public education, advocacy and policy impact.
We invite those who are passionate about affecting change on a global scale to invest in the protection of indigenous cultures and languages. Help us to preserve the crucial information that has been accumulated over millennia, to study the linkages between ecological and cultural diversity, and to positively influence public policy and sustainable livelihoods of people around the world.