My research works focuses on the political and cultural dimensions of human interactions with the environment. My research is based in Ladakh in the Indian Himalayas. Through ethnographic analyses, I examine the practices and beliefs through which an ethics of care for non-humans is shaped and nurtured and how this ethics evolves under political processes. I am also interested in the social and political effects of a shift towards “expert citizenship” as a means to address environmental issues. Since 2016, I am conducting research in the politically marginalized region of Zanskar (India) where the ability of the population to adapt to climate change intersects with its capacity to be recognized by the state. I examine how citizens develop technical expertise to address the consequences of climate change and of abandonment by the state. This includes the building of infrastructure like roads and irrigation canals. I am interested in supervising graduate students with research interests in the anthropology of the environment, infrastructure, climate change, the politics of environmental knowledge, and human-animal relations.
Gagne, Karine. 2019. Caring for Glaciers: Land, Animals, and Humanity in the Himalayas. Seattle: University of Washington Press.
Gagne, Karine. 2019. Waiting for the Flood: Technocratic Time and Impending Disaster in the Himalayas. Disasters. TBA.
Gagne, Karine. 2017. Building a Mountain Fortress for India: Sympathy, Imagination and the Reconfiguration of Ladakh into a Border Area. South Asia: Journal of South Asian Studies 40(2):222-238.
Gagne, Karine. 2016. Cultivating Ice Over Time: On the Idea of Timeless Knowledge and Places in the Himalayas. Anthropologica 58(2):193-210
Gagne, Karine. 2018. SSHRC Insight Development Grant. Amid Icy Ruins and Insecure Futures: Climate Change, Expertise, and The Infrastructure of Citizenship in Zanskar. [$61 287]