Vanessa Koh

Position
Princeton-Mellon / Princeton Institute for International and Regional Studies / High Meadows Environmental Institute Fellow
Bio/Description

Princeton-Mellon / Princeton Institute for International and Regional Studies / High Meadows Environmental Institute Fellow

Vanessa Koh’s research examines the relationship between land, nature, sovereignty, and the creation of urban environments. Her current book project is an ethnography of land reclamation in Singapore that enquires into how land is terraformed and subsequently managed and contested. Her work probes what it means to make both land and environmental claims in an epoch marked by increasing environmental precarity and anxiety. 

Trained as an environmental anthropologist, Koh completed a joint Ph.D. in the Department of Anthropology and the School of the Environment, and a graduate certificate in the Environmental Humanities, from Yale University. At Princeton, in Spring 2024, she will teach “The Politics of Land: Governance, Development, and Environment,” – a course that focuses on how a multi-faceted understanding of land weaves together the entangled concepts of nature, economy, sovereignty, and justice.  

Koh’s fellowship is made possible through the support of the Mellon Foundation, the High Meadows Environmental Institute, and the Princeton Institute for International and Regional Studies.