Kiik, Laur
The Estonian Institute of Humanities (EIH), Tallinn University (TU), Estonia
Brief bio :
Laur Kiik is an anthropologist and Junior Researcher of Southeast Asian Studies at the Estonian Institute of Humanities, Tallinn University. He researches how radically different subjectivities, ontologies, and political projects interact and conflict within environmental conservation, natural resource extraction, ethnic nationalisms, and indigenous Christian theology in Kachin land in northern Burma/Myanmar.
Individual Project :

Laur Kiik does anthropological research on environmental and ethnic politics in the war-torn Kachin region of Burma/Myanmar. This research aims to elucidate how contemporary Kachin ethnonationalist and Christian theological politics forge specific forms of environmentalist ideology, subjecthood and practice, as well as popular analyses of on-going large-scale natural resource extraction projects in the region and new ontological theorizations of ‘natural environment.’ Laur Kiik also looks at the (anti-)ethnopolitics surrounding the controversial Myitsone Dam project and Myanmar's popular campaign opposing the dams. Another conflict he tries to explain in terms of ethnic politics and 'ontological' clash is that between a transnational wildlife conservation NGO and ethnic Kachin environmental activists over a large tiger reserve. Recently, his research has increasingly attended to religion, specifically the genealogies of the contemporary nationalistic and partially Animistic theology of Kachin Baptism. He works using ethnographic methodology.

Kachin goldmining: environment, ethno-politics and war