Ph.D., University of California Berkeley, 2003
M.S., Massachusetts Institute of Technology, 1995
B.S., Massachusetts Institute of Technology, 1993

CAS Speaker Bureau Topic(s)

Contemporary Tibet - environment and development issues; China - environmental issues

Regional and Thematic Interests

East Asia


My main research interests are on questions of power, political economy, and cultural politics in the nature-society relationship. Using primarily ethnographic methods, I have conducted research on property rights, natural resource conflicts, environmental history, development and landscape transformation, grassland management and environmental policies, and emerging environmentalisms in Tibetan areas of China. In addition, I have also worked on the politics of identity and race in the Tibetan diaspora, and on several NSF-funded interdisciplinary, collaborative projects on putative causes of rangeland degradation and vulnerability to climate change on the Tibetan Plateau. Broader research and teaching interests include transnational conservation, critical development studies, the relationship between nature, territory, and the nation, and environmental justice. My regional expertise is in China, Tibet, and the Himalayas.

Selected Publications

2015. Liu, Jianqiang. Tibetan Environmentalists in China: The King of Dzi. Translated by Ian Rowen, Cyrus Hui and Emily T. Yeh. Lexington press.

2015. Diemberger, Hildegard, Astrid Hovden and Emily T. Yeh. "The honour of the snow-mountains is the snow: Tibetan livelihoods in a changing climate." in High-mountain Change and Risks. eds. C. Huggel, J.J. Clague, A. Kaab and M. Carey, Cambridge University Press, pp. 249-271.

2015. Yeh, Emily T. "How can experience of local residents be 'knowledge': Challenges in interdisciplinary climate research." Area. doi: 10.1111/area.12189

2015. Yeh, Emily T. "Political ecology in and of China." International Handbook of Political Ecology, ed. Raymond Bryant. Edward Elgar Publishing. pp. 619-632.

2015. Yeh, Emily T. and Joe Bryan. "Indigeneity." Routledge Handbook of Political Ecology. eds. Tom Perreault, Gavin Bridge, James McCarthy. Routledge.

"Transnational environmentalism and entanglements of sovereignty: The tiger campaign across the Himalayas." Political Geography 31: 418-428. 2.

2013. Yeh, Emily T. "Blazing Pelts and burning passions: Nationalism, cultural politics and spectacular decommodification in Tibet." Journal of Asian Studies. 3.

2013. Yeh, Emily T. and Kunga T. Lama. "Following the caterpillar fungus: Nature, commodity chains and the place of Tibet in China's uneven geographies."

2013. Social & Cultural Geography 4. Territorializing Tibet: Landscape Transformation and the Gift of Development. Cornell University Press.