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Ken Conca Professor School of International Service

Contact
Send email to Ken Conca
(202) 885-6391 (Office)
SIS - School of International Service
SIS - 302
FALL 2019: By appointment only. Wednesdays 2:00-4:30pm, Fridays 2:30-4:30pm, or at another pre-arranged time. Please email conca@american.edu to schedule an appointment.
Degrees
PhD, University of California, Berkeley; M.S., University of Wisconsin-Madison; Sc.B., Brown University

Languages Spoken
Portuguese
Favorite Spot on Campus
SIS Atrium; the Dav
Bio
Dr. Ken Conca’s research and teaching focus on global environmental governance, environmental peacebuilding in war-torn societies, environmental politics and policy in the United Nations system, water governance, and environmental policy analysis. His most recent books are The Oxford Handbook of Water Politics and Policy and An Unfinished Foundation: The United Nations and Global Environmental Governance. He is the editor of the widely used teaching anthology Green Planet Blues. Dr. Conca is a two-time recipient of the International Studies Association’s Harold and Margaret Sprout Award for best book on international environmental affairs; a recipient of the Chadwick Alger Prize for best book in the field of International Organization; and a recipient of the Al-Moumin Environmental Peacebuilding Award. He is a member of the United Nations Environment Programme’s Expert Advisory Group on Conflict and Peacebuilding.
For the Media
To request an interview for a news story, call AU Communications at 202-885-5950 or submit a request.

Scholarly, Creative & Professional Activities

Selected Publications

Ken Conca: Publications by Research Area

1. Global Environmental Governance

Sikina Jinnah, Simon Nicholson, David Morrow, Zachary Dove, Paul Wapner, Walter Valdivia, Leslie Paul Thiele, Catriona McKinnon, Andrew Light, Myanna Lahsen, Prakash Kashwan, Aarti Gupta, Alexander Gillespie, Richard Falk, Ken Conca, Dan Chong, and Netra Chhetri. “Governing Climate Engineering: A Proposal for Immediate Governance of Solar Radiation Management.” Sustainability 11 no. 14 (2019): article 3954 (9 pp.).  Special edition on Climate Change Law, Policy and Governance for Sustainable Development.

Prospects for a Multi-stakeholder Initiative on Climate Engineering.” Environmental Politics 28 no. 3 (May 2019): 417-440.

Is There a Role for the UN Security Council on Climate Change?Environment 61 no. 1 (January/February 2019): 4-15.

Academic Working Group on Climate Engineering Governance, Governing Solar Radiation Management. Washington: Forum for Climate Engineering Assessment, October 2018.

“Causes of the New Earth: The Changing Shape of Global Environmental Politics,” in Sikina Jinnah and Simon Nicholson, eds., New Earth Politics (MIT Press, 2016).

What’s Next for the Environment at the UN? Bringing Rights to the Fore.” Blog post, New Security Beat, October 16, 2016.

An Unfinished Foundation: The United Nations and Global Environmental Governance (New York: Oxford University Press, 2015).

World Environment Day – Three Questions for Ken Conca.” American University, School of International Service, June 2015.

Using the Full Mandate: Strengthening the Role of Peace and Human Rights in the UN’s Approach to Global Environmental Governance”, McGill International Journal of Sustainable Development Law and Policy (online), May 2015.

World Environment Day – Three Questions for Ken Conca.” American University, School of International Service, June 2015.

“The Rise of the Regional in Global Environmental Politics,” Global Environmental Politics vol. 12 no. 3 (August 2012): 127-133.

“Stockholm Conference of 1972,” in Akira Iriye and Pierre-Yves Saunier, eds., The Palgrave Dictionary of Transnational History (Hampshire, UK: Palgrave Macmillan, 2009).

Jacob Park, Ken Conca and Matthias Finger, eds., The Crisis of Global Environmental Governance: Towards a New Political Economy of Sustainability (London: Routledge, 2008).

“Rethinking Authority, Territory, and Knowledge: Transnational Socio-Ecological Controversies and Global Environmental Governance,” in Jacob Park, Ken Conca and Matthias Finger, eds., The Crisis of Global Environmental Governance: Towards a New Political Economy of Sustainability (London: Routledge: 2008).

“Old States in New Bottles? The Hybridization of Authority in Global Environmental Governance,” in John Barry and Robyn Eckersley, eds., The State and the Global Ecological Crisis (Cambridge, MA: The MIT Press, 2005).

“Environmental Governance After Johannesburg: From Stalled Legalization to Environmental Human Rights?” Journal of International Law and International Relations vol. 1 nos. 1-2 (December 2005): 121-138.

“Ecology in an Age of Empire: A Reply to (and Extension of) Dalby’s Imperial Thesis,” Global Environmental Politics vol. 4 no. 2 (May 2004): 12-19.

“Beyond the Earth Summit Framework,” Politics and the Life Sciences vol. 21 no. 2 (September 2002): 53-55.

"The World Commission on Dams and Trends in Global Environmental Governance," Politics and the Life Sciences vol. 21 no. 1 (March 2002): 67-70.

“The WTO and the Undermining of Global Environmental Governance,” Review of International Political Economy vol. 7 no. 3 (Autumn 2000): 484-494. Reprinted in Angus Cameron, Anastasia Nesvetailova, and Ronen Palan, eds., International Political Economy (London: Sage 2007).

"Beyond the Statist Frame: Environment in a Global Economy,” in Fred P. Gale and R. Michael M’Gonigle, eds., Nature, Production, Power: Towards an Ecological Political Economy (Cheltenham, UK: Edward Elgar, 2000).

"Environmental Protection, International Norms, and National Sovereignty: The Case of the Brazilian Amazon," in Gene Lyons and Michael Mastanduno, eds., Beyond Westphalia? State Sovereignty and International Intervention (Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press, 1995).

"Greening the United Nations: Environmental Organizations and the U.N. System," Third World Quarterly vol. 16 no. 3 (Fall 1995): 441-457. Reprinted in Thomas Weiss and Leon Gordenker, eds., NGOs, the UN, and Global Governance (Boulder, CO: Lynne Rienner Publishers, 1996).

"Global Environmental Governance: Causes, Components, and Consequences," The Journal of Green Cross Korea vol. 1 no. 1 (Summer 1995): 98-110.

"Rethinking the Ecology-Sovereignty Debate," Millennium: Journal of International Studies vol. 23 no. 3 (January 1995): 701-711. Reprinted in Peter M. Haas, ed., Environment in the New Global Economy (Cheltenham, UK: Edwin Elgar, 2003) and in Ken Conca and Geoffrey D. Dabelko, eds., Green Planet Blues: Four Decades of Global Environmental Politics (Boulder, CO: Westview Press, 2010).

Ronnie D. Lipschutz and Ken Conca, eds., The State and Social Power in Global Environmental Politics (New York: Columbia University Press, 1993).

"Environmental Change and the Deep Structure of World Politics," in Ronnie D. Lipschutz and Ken Conca, eds., The State and Social Power in Global Environmental Politics (New York: Columbia University Press, 1993).

2. Water

After the Floods: Ellicott City and the Search for Resilience. Book project about a small American town’s struggle with the intersecting meanings of risk, adaptation, resilience, place, and community. Manuscript in preparation.

A Look Downstream: Thoughtful Water Infrastructure Planning May Yield Economies of Flexibility.” Podcast interview, New Security Beat, March 29, 2019.

Ken Conca on Transboundary Water Basin Management.” Podcast interview, New Security Beat, January 18, 2019.

Ken Conca and Erika Weinthal, eds., Oxford Handbook of Water Politics and Policy (New York: Oxford University Press, 2018).

Ken Conca and Erika Weinthal, “The Political Dimensions of Water.” In Conca and Weinthal, eds., Oxford Handbook of Water Politics and Policy (New York: Oxford University Press, 2018).

Comment on the U.S. Global Water Strategy. Blog post, New Security Beat, November 29, 2017.

Ken Conca on the Good, Bad, and Ugly of Water Conflict and Cooperation.” Podcast, Woodrow Wilson Center, March 24, 2017.

Five Focal Points for US Global Water Strategy.” Blog post, New Security Beat, November 3, 2016.

“Which Risks Get Managed? Addressing Climate Effects in the Context of Evolving Water-governance Institutions.” Water Alternatives 8 no. 3 (October 2015): 301-316.

Benjamin Pohl, Alexander Carius, Ken Conca, Geoffrey D. Dableko, Annika Kramer, David Michel, Susanne Schmeier, Ashok Swain, and Aaron Wolf, The Rise of Hydro-diplomacy: Strengthening Foreign Policy for Transboundary Waters (Berlin: Adelphi Research and Federal Foreign Office, 2014). 52 pp.

Blog post: “Water: What to Do,” GEP Blog, March 14, 2014.

Claudia Pahl-Wostl, Ken Conca, Annika Kramer, Josefina Maestu, and Falk Schmidt, “Missing Links in Global Water Governance: A Processes-Oriented Analysis,” Ecology andSociety vol. 18 no. 2 (June 2013), article 33 (10 pp).

“Decoupling Water and Violent Conflict,” Issues in Science and Technology, vol. XXIX no. 1 (Fall 2012): 39-48.

“The Future of Water Conflict.” Video interview, Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars, February 2010.

“U.S. Foreign Water Policy,” Journal of Environment and Development vol. 17 no. 3 (September 2008): 215-237.

“Water, Conflict, and International Cooperation,” Fudan Review of International Studies, vol. 7 (March 2007).

“Governing Water: Contentious Transnational Politics and Global Institution Building,” Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars, Washington, June 2006.

Ken Conca, Fengshi Wu and Ciqi Mei, “Global Regime Formation or Complex Institution Building? The Principled Content of International River Agreements.” International Studies Quarterly 50 (June 2006): 263-285.

Understanding the Global Water Crisis: Insights from the GECHS Framework,” Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars, Washington, May 2006. Panel discussion with Ken Conca, Patricia Kameri-Mbote, and Lyla Mehta.

“Administrar el agua: globalización, redes y nueva faz del conflicto del agua (Governing Water: Globalization, Networks, and the New Face of Water Conflict).” Vanguardia Dossier, no. 21, October-December 2006.

Governing Water: Contentious Transnational Politics and Global Institution Building (Cambridge, MA: MIT Press, 2006).

“The New Face of Water Conflict.” Policy Brief no. 3 of the Navigating Peace Initiative, Environmental Change and Security Program, Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars, November 2006. Reprinted in Environmental Change and Security Program Report 13 (2008-09): 76-79.

“Transnational Dimensions of Freshwater Ecosystem Governance,” in A.R. Turton, J. Hattingh, G.A. Maree, D.J. Roux, M. Claassen, and W.F. Strydom, eds., Governance as a Trialogue: Government-Society-Science in Transition (Berlin: Springer-Verlag, 2006).

“Water,” in Roland Robertson and Jan Aart Scholte, eds., Encyclopedia of Globalization (New York: Routledge, 2006).

“Growth and Fragmentation in Expert Networks: The Elusive Quest for Integrated Water Resources Management”, in Peter Dauvergne, editor, Handbook of Global Environmental Politics (Cheltenham, UK: Edward Elgar, 2005).

“Global Water Prospects,” in Dennis Pirages and Kenneth Cousins, eds., From Resource Scarcity to Ecological Security: Exploring New Limits to Growth (Cambridge, MA: MIT Press, 2005).

3. Environment, Conflict, and Peacebuilding

Ken Conca and Anita Van Breda, “Enduring responses to war and disaster: The environmental dimensions of recovery.” Forthcoming, Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars.

Is There a Role for the UN Security Council on Climate Change?Environment 61 no. 1 (January/February 2019): 4-15.

Ken Conca and Michael D. Beevers, “Environmental Pathways to Peace.” In Ashok Swain and Joakim Öjendal, eds., Routledge Handbook of Environmental Conflict and Peacebuilding (New York, Routledge, 2018).

Review of Shirley V. Scott and Charlotte Ku, eds., Climate Change and the UN Security Council (Northampton, MA: Edward Elgar, 2018) in Nature Climate Change 8 (2018): 660-661.

Ken Conca, Joe Thwaites, and Goueun Lee, “Climate Change and the UN Security Council: Bully Pulpit or Bull in a China Shop?Global Environmental Politics 17 no. 2 (May 2017).

Al-Moumin Distinguished Lecture on Environmental Peacebuilding, 2017.

The UN Security Council and Climate Change.” Sustainable Security, December 6, 2017.

Video Interview “Should the UN Security Council take up climate change and if so how? Interview with Prof. Ken Conca.” Climate Diplomacy, December 2017.

Ken Conca on the Good, Bad, and Ugly of Water Conflict and Cooperation.” Podcast, Woodrow Wilson Center, March 24, 2017.

Climate Change and Global Security: What Role for the UN Security Council? Report of the Friedrich Ebert Foundation, New York, October 2017.

Tim Kovach and Ken Conca, “Environmental Priorities in Post-conflict Recovery:

Efficacy of the Needs-assessment Process.” Journal of Peacebuilding and Development 11 no. 2 (August 2016): 4-24.

“Should the UN Security Council Take Up Climate Security Issues? Ken Conca on Institutional Change.” New Security Beat, May 20, 2016.

An Unfinished Foundation: The United Nations and Global Environmental Governance (New York: Oxford University Press, 2015).

Using the Full Mandate: Strengthening the Role of Peace and Human Rights in the UN’s Approach to Global Environmental Governance”, McGill International Journal of Sustainable Development Law and Policy (online), May 2015.

Book review essay: “Complex Landscapes and Oil Curse Research,” Global Environmental Politics vol. 13 no. 3 (August 2013): 131–137.

Jennifer Wallace and Ken Conca, “Peace through Sustainable Forest Management in Asia: the USAID Forest Conflict Initiative,” in Päivi Lujala and Siri Aas Rustad, Eds., High-Value Natural Resources and Post-Conflict Peacebuilding (Abingdon, UK: EarthScan, 2012). Also published in Carl Bruch, Mikiyasu Nakayama, and Ilona Coyle, Harnessing Natural Resources for Peacebuilding: Lessons from U.S. and Japanese Assistance (Washington: Environmental Law Institute, 2011).

“Decoupling Water and Violent Conflict,” Issues in Science and Technology, vol. XXIX no. 1 (Fall 2012): 39-48.

“Environment, Conflict, and War-torn Societies.” Video interview, Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars, February 2010.

The Future of Water Conflict.” Video interview, Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars, February 2010.

Ken Conca and Jennifer Wallace, “Environment and Peacebuilding in War-Torn Societies: Lessons from the UN Environment Programme’s Experience with Postconflict Assessment,” Global Governance vol. 15 no. 4 (Oct-Dec 2009): 485-504. Reprinted in David Jensen and Steve Lonergan, eds., Assessing and Restoring Natural Resources in Post-Conflict Peacebuilding (Abingdon: EarthScan: 2012).

Ken Conca, Alexander Carius and Geoffrey D. Dabelko, “Building Peace Through Environmental Cooperation,” in The Worldwatch Institute, State of the World 2005: Redefining Global Security (New York: W.W. Norton, 2005).

Ken Conca, Alexander Carius, and Geoffry D. Dabelko, “Promoting Environmental Cooperation as a Peace-Building Tool.” Worldwatch Institute, Global Security Brief no. 6, June 2005.

Ken Conca and Geoffrey D. Dabelko, eds., Environmental Peacemaking (Washington: Woodrow Wilson Center Press and Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press, 2002).

“The Case for Environmental Peacemaking,” in Ken Conca and Geoffrey D. Dabelko, eds., Environmental Peacemaking (Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press and Washington: Woodrow Wilson Center Press, 2002).

“Environmental Cooperation and International Peace,” in Paul F. Diehl and Nils Petter Gleditsch, eds., Environmental Conflict (Boulder, CO: Westview Press, 2000).

Anne H. Ehrlich, Peter Gleick, and Ken Conca, “Resources and Environmental Degradation as Sources of Conflict,” Pugwash Occasional Papers vol. 2 no. 3 (September 2001): 108-138. Discussion paper for the 50th Pugwash Conference On Science and World Affairs: Eliminating the Causes of War, Cambridge, UK, August 2000.

"Environmental Confidence Building and Regional Security in Northeast Asia" in Miranda Schreurs and Dennis Pirages, eds., Ecological Security in Northeast Asia (Seoul: Yonsei University Press, 1999).

"The Environment-Security Trap," Dissent, Summer 1998, pp. 40-45.

"Peace, Justice, and Sustainability," in Dennis C. Pirages, ed., Building Sustainable Societies (Armonk, NY: M.E. Sharpe, 1996).

"In the Name of Sustainability: Peace Studies and Environmental Discourse," in Jyrki Kakonen, ed., Green Security or Militarized Environment (Aldershot, UK: Dartmouth Publishing Company, 1994). Reprint of article appearing originally in Peace and Change.

4. Human Rights, Environmental Justice, and Sustainability

After the Floods: Ellicott City and the Search for Resilience. Book project about a small American town’s struggle with the intersecting meanings of risk, adaptation, resilience, place, and community. Manuscript in preparation.

“Where Climate Meets Religion: Mobilization, Discourse, and Authority,” in Evan Berry, ed., Climate Politics and the Power of Religion (Bloomington: Indiana University Press, forthcoming.) Synthesis chapter for the project Religion and Climate Change in Cross-regional Perspective, Center for Latin American and Latino Studies, American University.

Prospects for a Multi-stakeholder Initiative on Climate Engineering.” Environmental Politics 28 no. 3 (May 2019): 417-440.

What’s Next for the Environment at the UN? Bringing Rights to the Fore.” Blog post, New Security Beat, October 16, 2016.

Rights and Environmental Protection Following Paris and the SDGs: Towards a Stronger Role for the United Nations. Report of the Friedrich Ebert Foundation, New York, September 2016.

A Healthy Environment is a Human Right.” Op-ed essay in The Guardian, October 1, 2015.

An Unfinished Foundation: The United Nations and Global Environmental Governance (New York: Oxford University Press, 2015).

Using the Full Mandate: Strengthening the Role of Peace and Human Rights in the UN’s Approach to Global Environmental Governance”, McGill International Journal of Sustainable Development Law and Policy (online), May 2015.

World Environment Day – Three Questions for Ken Conca.” American University, School of International Service, June 2015.

Environmental Human Rights,” in Peter Dauvergne, editor, Handbook of Global Environmental Politics (Cheltenham, UK: Edward Elgar, 2012).

“Naturalism as Mastery,” Tikkun, May/June 2010.

“An Environmental Agenda for Obama.” Dissent, Summer 2009, 73-79.

Thomas Princen, Michael Maniates, and Ken Conca, eds., Confronting Consumption (Cambridge, MA: The MIT Press, 2002).

“Green Politics in the Bush Era: Anti-Environmentalism’s Second Wave,” Dissent, Summer 2001, pp. 29-33.

“Consumption and Environment in a Global Economy,” Global Environmental Politics vol. 1 no. 3 (Summer 2001): 53-71.

Ken Conca, Thomas Princen, and Michael Maniates, “Confronting Consumption,” Global Environmental Politics vol. 1 no. 3 (Summer 2001): 1-10.

“The Environment in Campaign 2000: Laying a Foundation for Citizen Activism,” Dissent, Summer 2000, pp. 31-37.

"American Environmentalism Confronts the Global Economy," Dissent, Winter 2000, pp. 72-78.

"Peace, Justice, and Sustainability," in Dennis C. Pirages, ed., Building Sustainable Societies (Armonk, NY: M.E. Sharpe, 1996).

"Peace, Justice, and Sustainability," Peace Review vol. 6 no. 3 (Fall 1994): 325-331. Also published in The Newsletter of the Political Economy of the Good Society (PEGS), no. 1 (Spring 1994).

"In the Name of Sustainability: Peace Studies and Environmental Discourse," Peace and Change vol. 19 no. 2 (April 1994): 91-113.

5. Environmental Education

Ken Conca and Geoffrey D. Dabelko, eds., Green Planet Blues: Critical Perspectives on Global Environmental Politics (Boulder, CO: Westview Press, sixth edition forthcoming 2019). Previous editions 2015, 2010, 2004, 1998, 1995.

“Green Planet Blues: Sustainability, Security, and Justice.” Video interview, Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars, February 2010.

“Green Planet Blues: Four Decades of Global Environmental Politics.” Video interview, Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars, February 2010.

"Imagining the State,” in Michael Maniates, ed., Encountering Global Environmental Politics: Teaching, Learning, and Empowering Knowledge (Lanham, MD: Rowman & Littlefield, 2003).

6. Brazilian Politics and Political Economy

Governing Water: Contentious Transnational Politics and Global Institution Building (Cambridge, MA: MIT Press, 2006).

"Between Global Markets and Domestic Politics: Brazil’s Military-Industrial Collapse,” Review of International Studies vol. 24 (1998): 497-511.

Manufacturing Insecurity: The Rise and Fall of Brazil's Military-Industrial Complex (Boulder, CO: Lynne Rienner Publishers, 1997).

"A Industrializaçao Militar no Brasil: O Período pré-64" in Domicio Proença Jr., ed., Uma Avaliação da Indústria Bélica Brasileira: Defesa, Indústria e Tecnologia (Rio de Janeiro: Universidade Federal do Rio de Janeiro, 1993).

"O Brasil na Economia Global de Armamentos," in Domicio Proença Jr., ed., Uma Avaliação da Indústria Bélica Brasileira: Defesa, Indústria e Tecnologia (Rio de Janeiro: Universidade Federal do Rio de Janeiro, 1993).

Wayne Sandholtz, Michael Borrus, John Zysman, Ken Conca, Jay Stowsky, Steven Vogel, and Steve Weber, The Highest Stakes: The Economic Foundations of the Next Security System (New York: Oxford University Press, 1992).

"Technology, the Military, and Democracy in Brazil," Journal of Interamerican Studies and World Affairs (now Latin American Politics and Society) vol. 34 no. 1 (Spring 1992): 141-177.