Virginia Nazarea

Professor, Department of Anthropology
Director, Ethnoecology and Biodiversity Lab


Ph.D. Anthropology, University of Kentucky

Areas of Expertise
  • Ecological anthropology
  • Anthropology of development
  • Ethnoecology
  • Culture and biodiversity
  • Philippines
  • Ecuador
  • American South
Research Interests

I am interested in the interface between the way people see the elements and interrelationships in their environment with the way they decide and act in that environment. Further, I am concerned with the way the lenses people carry around in their heads are structured by the messages they received over time as they were growing up (and continue to receive when they are grown-up!) as members of a particular class, gender, and ethnicity. This concern has led me to explore a variety of different problems such as the distribution of local knowledge and the patterning of agricultural decision making of different categories of farmers, the relationship between marginality of production systems and the persistence of cultural memory that supports conservation of biodiversity, and the connection between mental maps and resource management practices of different groups of actors in a watershed.

Selected Publications

Nazarea, Virginia D., ed. 1999. Ethnoecology: Situated Knowledge/Located Lives.Tucson: University of Arizona Press.

Nazarea, Virginia D. 1998. Cultural Memory and Biodiversity. Tucson: University of Arizona Press.

Nazarea, Virginia D., Robert Rhoades, Erla Bontoyan, and Gabriela Flora. 1998. “Defining Indicators Which Make Sense to Local People: Intracultural Variation in Perceptions of Natural Resources.” Human Organization 57(2):159-170.

Nazarea, Virginia D., Eleanor Tison, Maricel Piniero, and Robert E. Rhoades. 1997.Yesterday’s Ways, Tomorrow’s Treasures: Heirloom Seeds and Memory Banking.Dubuque, IA: Kendall Hunt Publishing.

Nazarea, Virginia D. 1996. “Fields of Memories as Everyday Resistance.” Cultural Survival Quarterly 20(1): 61-66.
Nazarea-Sandoval, Virginia D. 1995. “Local Knowledge and Agricultural Decision Making in the Philippines: Class, Gender and Resistance.” Ithaca and London: Cornell University Press.

Nazarea-Sandoval, Virginia D. 1995. “Indigenous Agricultural Decision-Making Criteria as a Reflection of Socioeconomic Status and Gender in the Philippines.” In Indigenous Knowledge Systems: The Cultural Dimension of Development. edited by M. D. Warren, D. Brokensha, and L. J. Slikkerveer, 49-63. London: Intermediate Technology Press.