The Cultural Politics of the Green Economy

My current research project is entitled: “The Cultural Politics of the Green Economy in East Kalimantan, Indonesia”. I began ethnographic fieldwork with a reconnaissance trip in the late 2013, and have been actively conducting research since August 2014. I am researching the complexities inherent in environmental and social decision making and social change in Indonesia as oil palm plantations and REDD (Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Forest Degradation) concessions transform landscapes, livelihoods and human-environment relations in East Kalimantan, Indonesia. The general questions that I address in my dissertation research are:

  • How, and through what networks, is the ‘green economy’ being brought into being in East Kalimantan?
  • What underlying theories of value are implicit in the pursuit of green economy, as it is emerging in Indonesia?
  • What are the changing terms of access to and control over land and resources that are associated with the emergence of the ‘green economy’? And what material form will it take?
  • How is the Indonesian State aligning with the green economy, and what form is this alignment taking?