Use this URL to cite or link to this record in EThOS:
Title: Epistemic geographies of climate change : the IPCC and the spaces, boundaries and politics of knowing
Author: Mahony, M.
Awarding Body: University of East Anglia
Current Institution: University of East Anglia
Date of Award: 2013
Availability of Full Text:
Access from EThOS:
Access from Institution:
Science, like other realms of human activity, has its geographies. It proceeds in and through space, and participates in the construction of the political and cultural geographies by which human interactions with the nonhuman come to be known, understood and governed. The phenomenon of climate change stands at this juncture of science, politics, and the elemental materiality of the nonhuman. High-profile controversies about the physical reality, effects and management of the changing climate point to more deep-seated contestations about the place of science in modern democratic societies. This thesis engages with literatures on the historical and cultural geographies of science in order to open-up questions about the situatedness of climate change knowledges, the contested boundaries between the scientific and the political, and the spatial politics of relating epistemic claims to normative interventions in the world. The thesis proceeds through a series of linked case studies which traverse a range of emergent transnational spaces of knowledge production. It begins inside the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) and moves through the contested spaces of international climate diplomacy at the 2009 Copenhagen climate talks and through diverse cultures of knowledge authorisation in Indian climate politics. The thesis develops the notions of ‘boundary spaces’ and ‘epistemic geographies’ to capture the emergence, conjuncture and contestation of different modes of knowing and governing climate change. By following the objects of climate change knowledges – like visualisations, numerical targets, simulation models and predictions – conceptual distinctions between the spaces of knowledge production and consumption break down. Instead, a picture emerges of travelling knowledges which emphasises mutability, interpretive flexibility, and the spatial and discursive co-production of the epistemic and the normative. It is argued that by moving from ‘geographies of science’ to ‘epistemic geographies’, the hybridity of science and politics can be more effectively written-in to our accounts of contemporary knowledge politics.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available