Patrick Gallagher

Assistant Professor, Anthropology

Patrick Gallagher



I am a sociocultural anthropologist with research and teaching interests at the intersection of the anthropology of the environment and the anthropology of science. My research questions are driven by an interest in the cultural politics of nature and the growing role of the market in efforts to produce and protect environmental resources under climate change. My ethnographic work seeks to understand the social process of conservation knowledge production, primarily in Belize and the United States. My forthcoming book, ‘Valuing Nature at the Ends of the World: Natural Capital, Climate Change and the Imagination of Disaster in Coastal Belize (Columbia University Press) explores the way in which racialized colonialism, contemporary conservation, and emergent climate change science interact to produce precarious new forms of capitalist value that are made paradoxically through vivid imaginations of disaster and loss in a changing global environment. Based upon nearly a decade of ethnographic work in Belize, the book describes how new market-oriented modes of conservation draw value from landscapes that are the material artifacts of long histories of racialized dispossession and exclusion.

Research Interests

  • politics of nature and conservation
  • climate change
  • anthropology of science; capitalism
  • Belize and the Caribbean


  • PhD in Anthropology, Stanford University (2015)
  • MA in Anthropology, Stanford University (2012)
  • BA in Anthropology, Columbia University (2004)