Associate Professor Thom van Dooren

Associate Professor / ARC Future Fellow (2017-2021)
BA (Hons) ANU; PhD ANU
School of Humanities & Languages


02 9385 3768
Room 323, Morven Brown
Kensington Campus
Fields: Social and Cultural Anthropology, Cultural Studies, Environmental Philosophy

Thom van Dooren’s research, teaching and editorial work is all situated in the broad interdisciplinary field of the environmental humanities, exploring the role of an interdisciplinary humanities approach to understanding and addressing environmental change. 


Thom van Dooren’s research is situated in the broad interdisciplinary field of the environmental humanities. His current work focuses primarily on the philosophical and ethical dimensions of species extinctions and wildlife management, and is rooted in an approach that draws the humanities into conversation with ecology, biology, ethology and ethnographic work with communities whose lives are entangled with disappearing species in a range of different ways.

Van Dooren completed his B.A. (honours) and PhD at the Australian National University. He has been a Humboldt Research Fellow at the Rachel Carson Center, Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität, Munich (2014-2016, intermitent) and has held visiting positions in the History of Consciousness Program at the University of California at Santa Cruz (2005, 2010) and the Environmental Humanities Laboratory at the Royal Institute of Technology, Sweden (2014).

Van Dooren is co-editor of the international open-access journal Environmental Humanities. For more information on his writing and current research projects please visit his personal website.



    Book Chapters

    Journal articles

    • Kearnes M;van Dooren T, 2017, 'Rethinking the Final Frontier: Cosmo-Logics and an Ethic of Interstellar Flourishing', GeoHumanities, vol. 3, pp. 178 - 197,
    • Van Dooren T, 2017, 'Making Worlds with Crows: Philosophy in the Field', Rachel Carson Center Perspectives, vol. 2017/1, pp. 59 - 66,
    • van Dooren T, 2016, 'The Unwelcome Crows: hospitality in the anthropocene', Angelaki - Journal of the Theoretical Humanities, vol. 21, pp. 193 - 212,
    • Van Dooren T;Rose DB, 2016, 'Lively Ethography: Storying Animist Worlds', Environmental Humanities, vol. 8, pp. 77 - 94,
    • Van Dooren T;Kirksey E;Münster U, 2016, 'Multispecies Studies: Cultivating Arts of Attentiveness', Environmental Humanities, vol. 8, pp. 1 - 23,
    • van Dooren T, 2016, 'Authentic Crows: Identity, Captivity and Emergent Forms of Life', Theory, Culture & Society, vol. 33, pp. 29 - 52,
    • O'Gorman E;van Dooren T, 2015, 'The Promises of Pests: Wildlife in Agricultural Landscapes', Australian Zoologist,
    • van Dooren T;Rose DB, 2015, 'Keeping Faith with the Dead: Mourning and De-extinction', Australian Zoologist,
    • Van Dooren T, 2015, 'A Day with Crows: Rarity, Nativity and the Violent-Care of Conservation', Animal Studies Journal, vol. 4, pp. 1 - 28,
    • Van Dooren T, 2014, 'Care (in the Living Lexicon for the Environmental Humanities)', Environmental Humanities, vol. 5, pp. 291 - 294,
    • Van Dooren T, 2012, 'Nature in the anthropocene? A reflection on a photograph', Yearbook of Comparative and General Literature, vol. 58, pp. 228 - 234,
    • van Dooren T;Rose D, 2012, 'Storied-places in a multispecies city', Humanimalia, vol. 3, pp. 1 - 27
    • Rose D;van Dooren T;Chrulew M;Cooke S;Kearnes M;O''Gorman E, 2012, 'Thinking Through the Environment, Unsettling the Humanities', Environmental Humanities, vol. 1, pp. 1 - 5,
    • van Dooren T, 2012, 'Wild Seed, Domesticated Seed: Companion species and the emergence of agriculture', PAN: Philosophy Activism Nature, vol. 9, pp. 22 - 28
    • Van Dooren T, 2011, 'Invasive species in penguin worlds: An ethical taxonomy of killing for conservation', Conservation and Society, vol. 9, pp. 286 - 298,
    • van Dooren T, 2011, 'Vultures and their People in India: Equity and Entanglement in a Time of Extinctions', Australian Humanities Review, vol. 50, pp. 45 - 61,
    • Van Dooren T, 2010, 'Biopatents and the problem/promise of genetic leaks: Farming canola in Canada', Capitalism, Nature, Socialism, vol. 21, pp. 43 - 63,
    • van Dooren T, 2010, 'Pain of Extinction: The Death of a Vulture', Cultural Studies Review, vol. 16, pp. 271 - 289
    • van Dooren T, 2009, 'Banking Seed: Use and Information in the Conservation of Agricultural Diversity', Science As Culture, vol. 18, pp. 373 - 395
    • van Dooren T, 2009, 'Genetic Conservation in a Climate of Loss: Thinking with Val Plumwood', Australian Humanities Review, vol. 46, pp. 103 - 112
    • van Dooren T, 2008, 'Inventing seed: The nature(s) of intellectual property in plants', Environment and Planning D: Society and Space, vol. 26, pp. 676 - 697,
    • Roa-Rodriguez C;van Dooren T, 2008, 'The Shifting Common Spaces of Plant Genetic Resources in the International Regulation of Property', The Journal of World Intellectual Property, vol. 11, pp. 176 - 202
    • van Dooren T, 2007, 'Terminated Seed: Death, Proprietary Kinship and the Production of (Bio)wealth', Science As Culture, vol. 16, pp. 71 - 93
    • Van Dooren T, 2005, 'I would rather be a god/dess than a cyborg' a pagan encounter with Donna Haraway', Pomegranate, vol. 7, pp. 42 - 58
    • Rose D;van Dooren T;Cooke S, 2001, 'Ravens at Play', Cultural Studies Review, vol. 17, pp. 326 - 343


    • Metcalf J;van Dooren T, 2012, Temporal Environments: Rethinking Time and Ecology
    • Rose DB (ed.), 2011, Introduction, Australia

    Edited Books


Undergraduate courses


Areas of honours and postrgraduate supervision

  • Animal/multispecies studies
  • Environmental philosophy and ethics
  • Environmental cultural studies
  • Environmental anthropology
  • Science and technology studies (STS)
  • Biodiversity loss and extinction
  • Wildlife management
  • Memory and loss
  • Philosophies of embodiment, vulnerability and death
  • Off-earth/space mining and expansion

Honours and prizes

Significant Recent Awards


ARC Future Fellowship 2017-2021 (FT160100098): AUD 820,000

Extinction Stories: Inhabiting Landscapes of Loss in the Anthropocene 


Humboldt Fellowship for Experienced Researchers, 2014-2016

Alexander von Humboldt Foundation, Germany

Rachel Carson Center, Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität, Munich


Australian Research Council, Discovery Project 2015-2017 (DP150103232): AUD 146,700

Encountering Crows: Living with Wildlife in a Changing World


Australian Research Council, Discovery Project 2011-2013 (DP110102886): AUD 95,000 

Encounters with Extinction: A multi-sited, multi-species approach to life at the edge of catastrophe in the Asia-Pacific region

(with Deborah Bird Rose)


Sir William Keith Hancock Lecture, invited lecture to the 44th Symposium of the Australian Academy of the Humanities, November 2013

"Spectral Crows in Hawai‘i: Conservation, Haunted Landscapes and the Environmental Humanities"

Affiliations and membership

Professional Member of the Society for the Social Studies of Science (4S) USA (since 2008)

Member, International Society for Environmental Ethics (ISEE) (since 2011)

Member, International Association for Environmental Philosophy (IAEP) (since 2012)

Member, Australian Animal Studies Group (AASG) (since 2012)


Founding co-editor, Environmental Humanities, (since 2012)

Editorial Board Member, Routledge Environmental Humanities book series, (since 2013)

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