LSU Geographer Craig Colten Selected for Rachel Carson Center Fellowship

09/06/2012 03:12 PM

BATON ROUGE – LSU Geographer Craig Colten, the Carl O. Sauer Professor in the Department of Geography & Anthropology, has been honored with his selection as a fellow at the Rachel Carson Center for Environment and Society in Munich, Germany.  


Colten studies the long-term relationships between humans and the environment and has written several books on the historical geography of New Orleans’ continual efforts to make a perilous place into a metropolitan area.


The Rachel Carson Center, a joint initiative of Ludwig-Maximilians-University Munich and the Deutsches Museum, brings together about a dozen leading academics from around the world each year who work on the complex, interdisciplinary relationship between nature and society. Named after the widely recognized American scientist and author Rachel Carson, the center supports graduate study, hosts visiting scholars, and conducts international conferences and workshops all with the goal to further our understanding of international environmental studies and to strengthen the role of the humanities in the current political and scientific debates about the environment. In three short years, it has achieved international acclaim as one of the most vibrant centers for the study of environmental history.


Colten recently returned from one of the conferences where he presented a paper on New Deal-era rural land re-development projects.  


“This was my second visit to Munich and the center,” Colten said. “It is without a doubt an exciting venue for environmental pursuing environmental historical geography. The upcoming fellowship will offer an exceptional opportunity for me to meet with scholars from diverse backgrounds and engage in vigorous discussions about the intersections of our work. It is truly an honor to be selected for one of these prestigious fellowships.”


Colten has proposed to extend a project he currently has underway on water resources in the American South by adding an international dimension.


“I hope to take advantage of the resources in Munich to examine the connections and flow of ideas and expertise among European and American water managers and how that became part of international development efforts in the global south,” he said.  


For more information on the LSU Department of Geography and Anthropology in the College of Humanities & Social Sciences, visit For more on the College of Humanities & Social Sciences, visit

Ernie  Ballard 
LSU Media Relations

Posted on Thursday, September 6, 2012