News: Rebecca Hofmann as expert in the Green Vision movie series

In the Rachel Carson Center “Green Visions” movie series Rebecca Hofmann served as an expert for the Q&A accompanying the screening of the movie “There Once Was An Island”.


The movie is about Takuu, a tiny island in Polynesia that is in danger from the rising sea level. The film portrays the struggle of its inhabitants for their culture and their very existence as they experience the destructive effects of climate change firsthand. The three protagonists Teloo, Endar, and Satty offer a glimpse into their lives and culture.




News: Hofmann Presents on Climate Induced Migration in Bremen

Rebecca Hofmann spoke about the “The Cultural Space of Climate Change, Adaptation and Mobility in Chuuk, Micronesia”.

artecThe workshop “Denaturalizing Climate Change: Migration, Mobilities and Spaces” was organized by artec – Forschungszentrum Nachhaltigkeit at the University of Bremen, 31.10.-01.11.2013. Fourteen scholars of the humanities and social sciences gave diverse paper on the climate change and mobility nexus, followed by discussions.

(c) Logo by artec

News: Hofmann Presents at the GAA Conference 2013

The conference, titled “Locations: Anthropology in the Academy, the Workplace, and the Public Sphere,” took place during the biannual meeting of the German Anthropological Association in Mainz from October 2-5.

GAARebecca Hofmann presented on “Localizing Global Climate Change in the Pacific. Knowledge and Response in the Politics of Chuuk, Federated States of Micronesia (FSM)” in the panel: “Globale Klimapolitik und lokale Lebenswelten. Wo verortet sich die Ethnologie in der Debatte um den Klimawandel?”

Organized by Arno Pascht and Michaela Haug in cooperation with Sara de Wit, the panel brought together case studies from around the globe on climate change as a societal non-topic and a political concept. In spite of the diverse historical, political, economic and socio-cultural contexts, many similarities were found in the ways people react to and deal with climate change.

(c) Poster by German Anthropological Association GAA

News: Climates of Migration Project featured in Science Europe’s Brochure

The Science Europe Scientific Committee for the Humanities just published their first brochure with the objective to increase awareness of how the Humanities are actually contributing to the Societal Challenges.

They want to show that the Humanities have important resources to offer and that it is essential that in the formulation of the Horizon 2020 programme texts there is scope to include these lines of research. The projects highlighted in the brochure not only have made a concrete, societal impact but also break through the usual stereotypes of the Humanities and therefore try widening the view on Humanities. The brochure contains twelve profiles of humanities research projects that “demonstrate the tangible impacts of key research findings on real-world issues; […] they also highlight how fundamental arts and humanities research leads to innovation that can rarely be foreseen.” The Climates of Migration Project is one of the featured projects in this issue.

The entire brochure can be found online (PDF, downloadable) here:

Humanities in the societal challanges

News: 10th Forum for Sustainability (FONA)

Steven Engler (KWI), Rebecca Hofmann and Uwe Lübken (both RCC) of the Climates of Migration team presented results of their research at the 10th Forum for Sustainability (FONA).

Organized by the German Ministry for Education and Research (BMBF) and hosted by the HELMHOLTZ CENTRE FOR ENVIRONMENTAL RESEARCH (UFZ), more than 400 participants gathered in Leipzig from Sept. 9 – 11 to discuss ongoing research on sustainability, especially its societal dimensions. Comprehensive papers on the research that has been conducted over the last three years as a result of the BMBF’s funding measure „SOCIAL DIMENSIONS OF CLIMATE CHANGE AND CLIMATE PROTECTION“ can be found here:

News: One Concept of Environmental Migration?

In August, 2013, following the ESEH 2013, scholars from around the world gathered at the Rachel Carson Center in Munich for the workshop One Concept of Environmental Migration? Bridging Disciplinary Approaches within the Humanities, sponsored by COST and the Climates of Migration project at the Rachel Carson Center.

The workshop aimed to bring together scholars from different disciplines and parts of the world to discuss what is the current state of the art in climate migration research and establish  more common ground on an international scale. After a short presentation by Donald Worster, the participants engaged in a very stimulating discussion. Hosted by Rebecca Hofmann and Dr. Marco Armiero, the workshop successfully laid the groundwork for future collaboration between the participants.

Workshop “One Concept of Environmental Migration? Bridging Disciplinary Approaches within the Humanities”

On August 25th, the “Climates of Migration” research project will be hosting the workshop “One Concept of Environmental Migration? Bridging Disciplinary Approaches within the Humanities“, which will take place at the RCC. This one day workshop aims to look at the intersections between environmental change and human mobility from an explicitly interdisciplinary perspective within the field of humanities.
As it is designed as an in-depth and interdisciplinary discussion rather than a combination of individual presentations, approx. 12–14 scholars from different disciplines were asked to ponder and reflect on four guiding questions from the perspective of their respective field(s) and to prepare a short written response to be pre-circulated.
The workshop is part of the post conference programme of the bi-annual meeting of the European Society of Environmental History (ESEH), and is generously funded by COST—the European Cooperation in Science and Technology.


News: Book Award

Franz Mauelshagen, Principal Investigator of “Climates of Migration”, has been awarded a prestigious translation grant for his monograph Wunderkamer auf Papier: Die Wickiana zwischen Reformation und Volksglaube, Bibliotheca Academica Verlag, Epfendorf 2011; A Cabinet of Curiosities on Paper: Johann Jacob Wick’s Wonderbooks) by the Börsenverein des Deutschen Buchhandels, the German Foreign Office, the Fritz Thyssen Foundation, and VG Wort within the framework of their program „Geisteswissenschaften International — Preis zur Förderung der Übersetzung geisteswissenschaftlicher Literatur“. His book was selected as one of sixteen „distinguished works in the humanities and social sceinces“ receiving a translation grant in 2013 (see The book will soon be translated into English and published in Ashgate’s „St. Andrews Studies in Reformation History“ series (forthcoming 2014).

News: Lübken gives two presentations on environment, disasters and migration

PD Dr. Uwe Lübken gave two presentations focused on historical natural disasters and the relationship between environmental change, displacement and migration.

On May 28th, the presentation ‘Umwelt bewegt: Zum historischen Verhältnis von Natur, Katastrophe und Migration‘ was given at the Wuppertal Institute for Climate, Environment and Energy, as part of series of lectures entitled Die Welt, in der wir leben wollten… Zu einer Theorie menschlicher Umwelten.

On June 19th, ‘Umwelt – Katastrophe – Migration: Historische Anmerkungen zu einem aktuellen Problem‘ was presented at the Technical University of Munich (TU München), as part of a series of lectures on the environment (Ringvorlesung Umwelt). You may find the programme here and abstracts here.