Kim Fortun

Location

3151 Social Science Plaza
Irvine, CA
92697-5100
United States

Position

Professor

Biography

Kim Fortun is a Professor and Department Chair in the University of California Irvine’s Department of Anthropology.  Her research and teaching focus on environmental risk and disaster, and on experimental ethnographic methods and research design.  Her research has examined how people in different geographic and organizational contexts understand environmental problems, uneven distributions of environmental health risks, developments in the environmental health sciences, and factors that contribute to disaster vulnerability.  Fortun’s book Advocacy After Bhopal Environmentalism, Disaster, New World Orders was awarded the 2003 Sharon Stephens Prize by the American Ethnological Society.  From 2005-2010, Fortun co-edited the Journal of Cultural Anthropology. Currently, Fortun is working on a book titled Late Industrialism: Making Environmental Sense, on The Asthma Files, a collaborative project to understand how air pollution and environmental public health are dealt with in different contexts, and on design of the Platform for Experimental and Collaborative Ethnography (PECE), an open source/access digital platform for anthropological and historical research.  Fortun also runs the EcoEd Research Group, which turns ethnographic findings about environmental problems into curriculum for students (kindergarten through professional), and is helping organize both the Disaster-STS Research Network, and the Digital Practices in History and Ethnography Interest Group in the Research Data Alliance.  Fortun co-edits a book series for University of Pennsylvania Press titled Critical Studies in Risk and Disaster, designed to connect academic research to public problems and policy, reaching audiences in different regions of the world.  September 2017 through August 2019, Fortun serves as President of the Society for Social Studies of Science, the international scholarly society representing the field of Science and Technology Studies.