Integrated Search Menu

Shauna BurnSilver

Assistant Professor
Faculty, TEMPE Campus, Mailcode 2402
Asst Professor
Faculty, TEMPE Campus, Mailcode 2402
Asst Professor
Faculty, TEMPE Campus, Mailcode 2402
Biography

Shauna BurnSilver is an environmental anthropologist who studies how global climate and economic changes are transforming relationships between modern pastoral and hunter/fisher communities and the natural resources they have depended on for centuries. BurnSilver's recent work focuses on how people make a living in mixed economies, i.e. through combining subsistence activities, sharing and cooperation, and wage labor.  Also of interest is how people express connections to landscapes and places even as subsistence is combined with cash activities.  BurnSilver's work is sited in the Alaskan Arctic with modern Iñupiaq hunters/fishers and East and West Africa, with Maasai (Kenya) and Tuareg (Mali) pastoralists.  A new research initiative in China (Fall 2017) will examine emerging cultural models of economic and cultural development in a rural (agricultural) region that is experimenting with sustainable green growth.  BurnSilver was a Peace Corps volunteer in Mali, West Africa and her research resume strongly reflects the abiding values of community engagement, empowerment and interdisciplinary collaboration. Research questions lie at the intersection of local communities' priorities and cutting edge social-ecological science.  

The responses of households and communities tightly connected to landscapes, to resources and to each other are compelling to study from a social-ecological systems perspective.  Hunter - gatherers and pastoralists represent iconic examples of groups who historically possessed a highly-cohesive set of cultural and ecological adaptations to cope with extreme environments.  They now face new sources of risk and uncertainty, such as climate change, market integration, conservation initiatives, governance and property rights transformations.  

At the core of BurnSilver's research is the broad question of how households and communities respond to these changes. More specifically, how do people combine new and old (economic and social) strategies in the face of significant risks to human livelihoods?  Who is most and least vulnerable to ongoing changes?  How do social relationships act as sources of flexibility and adaptation amidst change?  Are existing cooperation networks flexibile through time?  What new definitions of well-being and sense(s) of place are emerging and how do these ideas subsequently drive future choices and community dynamics?  The answers to these questions are relevant to ongoing discussions of sustainability, resilience and ideas about human progress.

 

Education

PhD, Human Ecology, Colorado State University

Research Interests

Household and community vulnerability; resilience; subsistence livelihoods; economic diversification; mixed economies; food sharing; social-ecological systems; social capital; social network analysis; sense of place; climate change adaptation; Maasai and Tuareg pastoralists; Kenya; Mali; I ñupiaq; Alaska; social network analysis;  community-based collaboration

 

 

 

Research Activity
  • Burnsilver,Shauna B.*. Modeling harvesting behavior to understand adaptation mitigation and transformation in northern subsistence systems. UNIV OF ALASKA - FAIRBANKS(8/1/2013 - 9/15/2013).
  • Burnsilver,Shauna B.*. The Study of Sharing Networks to Assess the Vulnerabilities of Local Communities to Oil and Gas Development Impacts in Arctic Alaska. UNIV OF ALASKA - FAIRBANKS(5/19/2012 - 1/31/2014).
  • Burnsilver,Shauna B.*. Hydrology Ecology and Pastoral Societies in the Sahel: Ephemeral and Perennial Water Resources in a Dynamic Coupled System. SDSU(11/1/2011 - 8/31/2015).
Fall 2017
Course NumberCourse Title
ASB 300Food and Culture
ASB 484Internship
ASB 492Honors Directed Study
ASB 493Honors Thesis
ASB 499Individualized Instruction
ASB 580Practicum
ASB 584Internship
ASB 590Reading and Conference
ASB 592Research
SOS 790Reading and Conference
ASB 790Reading and Conference
ASB 792Research
ASB 799Dissertation
Spring 2017
Course NumberCourse Title
ASB 484Internship
ASB 492Honors Directed Study
ASB 493Honors Thesis
ASB 499Individualized Instruction
ASB 530Ecological Anthropology
SOS 553Ecological Anthropology
ASB 580Practicum
ASB 590Reading and Conference
ASB 592Research
SOS 596Scientific Paper
ASB 790Reading and Conference
SOS 790Reading and Conference
ASB 792Research
ASB 799Dissertation
Fall 2016
Course NumberCourse Title
ASB 375Humans and the Environment
SOS 375Humans and the Environment
ASB 484Internship
ASB 492Honors Directed Study
ASB 493Honors Thesis
ASB 499Individualized Instruction
ASB 580Practicum
ASB 584Internship
ASB 590Reading and Conference
ASB 592Research
ASB 790Reading and Conference
ESS 790Reading and Conference
ASB 792Research
ESS 792Research
ASB 799Dissertation
ESS 799Dissertation
Spring 2016
Course NumberCourse Title
ASB 484Internship
ASB 492Honors Directed Study
ASB 493Honors Thesis
ASB 499Individualized Instruction
ASB 580Practicum
ASB 590Reading and Conference
ASB 592Research
SOS 596Scientific Paper
SOS 790Reading and Conference
ASB 790Reading and Conference
ASB 792Research
ASB 799Dissertation
Fall 2015
Course NumberCourse Title
ASB 300Food and Culture
ASB 484Internship
ASB 492Honors Directed Study
ASB 493Honors Thesis
ASB 499Individualized Instruction
ASB 580Practicum
ASB 584Internship
ASB 590Reading and Conference
ASB 592Research
SOS 596Scientific Paper
ESS 790Reading and Conference
ASB 790Reading and Conference
ESS 792Research
ASB 792Research
ASB 799Dissertation
ESS 799Dissertation
Spring 2015
Course NumberCourse Title
ASB 300Food and Culture
ASB 484Internship
ASB 493Honors Thesis
ASB 499Individualized Instruction
ASB 580Practicum
ESS 590Reading and Conference
ASB 590Reading and Conference
ASB 592Research
ESS 790Reading and Conference
ASB 790Reading and Conference
ESS 792Research
ASB 792Research
ESS 799Dissertation
ASB 799Dissertation
Fall 2014
Course NumberCourse Title
ASB 375Environmental Anthropology
SOS 375Environmental Anthropology
ASB 484Internship
ASB 492Honors Directed Study
ASB 493Honors Thesis
ASB 499Individualized Instruction
ASB 580Practicum
ASB 584Internship
ASB 590Reading and Conference
ASB 592Research
ASB 790Reading and Conference
ESS 790Reading and Conference
ASB 792Research
ESS 792Research
ASB 799Dissertation
ESS 799Dissertation
Spring 2014
Course NumberCourse Title
SOS 375Environmental Anthropology
ASB 375Environmental Anthropology
ASB 484Internship
ASB 492Honors Directed Study
ASB 493Honors Thesis
ASB 499Individualized Instruction
ASB 580Practicum
ESS 590Reading and Conference
ASB 590Reading and Conference
ASB 592Research
ASB 790Reading and Conference
ESS 790Reading and Conference
ASB 792Research
ESS 792Research
ASB 799Dissertation
ESS 799Dissertation
Fall 2013
Course NumberCourse Title
ASB 484Internship
ASB 492Honors Directed Study
ASB 493Honors Thesis
ASB 499Individualized Instruction
ASB 530Ecological Anthropology
SOS 553Ecological Anthropology
ASB 580Practicum
ASB 584Internship
ASB 590Reading and Conference
ESS 590Reading and Conference
ESS 592Research
ASB 592Research
ASB 790Reading and Conference
ESS 790Reading and Conference
ASB 792Research
ESS 792Research
ASB 799Dissertation
ESS 799Dissertation
Spring 2013
Course NumberCourse Title
ASB 484Internship
ASB 493Honors Thesis
ASB 499Individualized Instruction
ASB 590Reading and Conference
ASB 592Research
ESS 592Research
ESS 790Reading and Conference
ASB 790Reading and Conference
ESS 792Research
ESS 799Dissertation
ASB 799Dissertation
Presentations
  • S.B. BurnSilver, J. Magdanz and R. Boone. Operationalizing Resilience within Alaskan Mixed Economies: Patterns, Processes and Dynamics. AAAs (Dec 2014).
  • S. BurnSilver and T. McCabe (Organizers) M. Nelson, D. Gerkey, K. Galvin, M. Bollig. Operationalizing Resilience Theory within Anthropology. AAA Annual Conference (Dec 2014).
  • BurnSilver S.B. From East Africa to the Arctic: Comparative Livelihood Analyses to Explore Arctic Sustainabilities. Sustainability and Sustainable Development in the Arctic: Arctic FROST (Sep 2014).
  • S.B. BurnSilver, J. Ziker and D. Gerkey. Using Social Network Analysis to Understand Arctic Sustainability. the 4th International Congress of Arctic Social Sciences (ICASS IV) (Jun 2014).
  • S. B. BurnSilver, J. Baggio, J. Magdanz, A. Arenas, M. De Domenico, and G. Kofinas. Ties that bind us together: Sharing, Cooperation and Vulnerability in the Alaskan North. The 4th International Congress of Arctic Social Sciences (ICASS IV) (Jun 2014).
  • S.B. BurnSilver. Proposition: Social Institutions Contribute to Resilience within SESs at the Margins. Third International Science and policy Conference on the resilience of social & ecological systems (May 2014).
  • S. B. BurnSilver, J. Baggio, J. Magdanz, A. Arenas, M. De Domenico, and G. Kofinas. Ties that bind us together: Sharing, Cooperation and Vulnerability in the Alaskan North. Third International Science and policy Conference on the resilience of social & ecological systems (May 2014).
  • S.B. BurnSilver and J. Baggio. Networks and Cooperation: Are social network characteristics generalizable in thinking about Resilience?. Third International Science and policy Conference on the resilience of social & ecological systems (May 2014).
  • S.B. BurnSilver, J. Baggio and J. Magdanz. Session Title: How do social relationships offset household vulnerability in the context of rapid change? Paper Title: What does observed multiplexity in food sharing and cooperative networks suggest for household vulnerability in the Alaskan North?. 112th American Anthropological Association - Annual Meeting (Nov 2013).
  • BurnSilver, S. Role of Sharing and Cooperation in Offsetting Household Vulnerability. Colloquium - Seminar Series, Institute for Social and Economic Research, University of Alaska Anch (Jun 2013).
  • S. B. BurnSilver, Kofinas, G. and J. Magdanz. Superhunters, Superhouseholds and Superproviders. Society for Applied Anthropology Annual Meeting (Mar 2013).
  • BurnSilver, S. Sharing and Cooperation in the Far North: Old social mechanisms under evolving economic and climatic conditions in village Alaska. Stanford University Ecology and Environment - Winter Colloquium Series (Mar 2013).
  • S. BurnSilver. Sharing and Cooperation in 3 Northern Communities. Research Roundtable - see notes (Jul 2012).
  • S. BurnSilver. Pastoral Land Use Change 1994 to 2012: Agoufou, Mali. HEP-SAHEL NSF Project Workshop (Jun 2012).
  • S. BurnSilver. Thinking about Household Vulnerability in Pastoral and Arctic Social-Ecological Systems. Resilience and Adaptation Seminar Series - University of Alaska Fairbanks (May 2012).
  • S. BurnSilver. COMPETE - Bioenergy and Sustainability in Subsaharan Africa. ICSS 2012: Sustainability Science in Action. The 3rd International Conference on Sustainability Sc (Feb 2012).
Service
  • See innovation and impact - AEWC entry, Research Dissemination (2014 - Present)
  • Journal of Land Use Science, Reviewer (2013 - Present)
  • Arctic Research Consortium of the U.S. (ARCUS), ASU Representative (2013 - Present)
  • Arctic Research Consortium of the U.S. (ARCUS), ASU Representative (2013 - Present)
  • Graduate Research Committee, Chair (2013 - 2015)
  • SHESC Search Committee - SW Borderland Search, Committee Member (2014 - 2014)
  • SHESC Archaeology Search Committee, Committee Member (2012 - 2013)