Associated Members

Researchers with affiliations other than the University of Vienna

Scientific Director

Konrad Lorenz Institut für Evolutions- und Kognitionsforschung (KLI)
Martinstraße 12A
3400 Klosterneuburg

Tel: +43-1-4277-42128

The Anthropocene redefines the relationship between humans and nature. Based on this theoretical assumption, I am interested in the poetics of the Anthropocene: How does literature present and narrate the Anthropocene as new mode of existence? Which literary forms and genres address insights on the entanglement of human existence and nature and represent the new understanding of nature?  My research assumes that a poetics of the Anthropocene is above all a reflection on literary form represented by natural forms and transformations.

Keywords: Anthropocene Poetics, Form, Genre

Project 'Landscape, Life, Form'

Independent Researcher

(Department of German Studies
University of Vienna)

In the debate over the Anthropocene, some have criticized the concept as an outright expression of efforts to gain complete control over nature, while others have welcomed it as a long-overdue critique of modernity’s failure to recognize its devastating environmental consequences. In that second perspective, the diagnosis of the Anthropocene becomes an incentive for change and for thinking about our common future on planet Earth. What will that future look like? Will the recognition of the Anthropocene be a harbinger of doom? Or will it herald a new age of sustainability? As an environmental historian I am interested in the past. But I am also a citizen of the Earth. To me the Anthropocene challenges the old Kantian distinction between the public and the private in the academic persona.

Keywords: Climate, Environmental History, Future, Material Culture

Department of History
University of Bielefeld
33501 Bielefeld


In addition to the pressing political dimensions of the Anthropocene relating to climate justice and intergenerational justice, I am interested in the way that the Anthropocene occasions a thoroughgoing interrogation of fundamental categories in the humanities. Together with Juliane Prade-Weiss, I organized a workshop at the University of Vienna on 'Guilt in the Anthropocene.' Rather than abandoning outright such categories as “guilt,” I believe they urgently need to be rethought as we seek to come to terms with what it means to live in the Anthropocene.

Keywords: Climate Justice, Guilt, History, Intergenerational Justice, Politics

Assistant Professor of German, Director of Graduate Studies

College of Arts & Sciences
New York University (NYU)
United States

The Anthropocene concept, describing the current geological epoch characterised by a global impact of humankind on the environment, has gained actuality through the recognisable effects of climate change and species extinction, making it of crucial importance for school education. The interdisciplinary discussion of the interaction between humankind and nature opens the possibility to utilise the Anthropocene as a concept of reflection and a learning tool for transformative education. The research and development project “Learning and Teaching the Anthropocene” at the University College of Teacher Education Lower Austria employs the Anthropocene as a mental framework for transformative learning, which wants to enable active participation on shaping a sustainable future, across the curriculum.

Keywords: Transformative Learning, Education for Sustainable Development, Global Citizenship Education

Pädagogische Hochschule Niederösterreich
Department 5: Pädagogik
Mühlgasse 67
2500 Baden

Tel: +43-2252 88570-159

Univ.-Prof. Dr. Susanne Weigelin-Schwiedrizik

Portrait photo of Susanne Weigelin-Schwiedrizik

The Anthropocene is a catchword which has the power to mobilize the intelligence of concerned people around the world. It has had the effect of raising our awareness of humankind's detrimental impact on our natural environment, and in this sense it has generated a lively and urgent debate especially among academics and artists. As a scholar of East Asian Studies, I am interested in understanding the East Asian reaction to this catchword and in deconstructing different responses to the Anthropocene in East Asia and Europe. I am interested in making people in Europe understand that East Asia, which faced the atomic bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki and many natural catastrophes of enormous dimensions during the last decades, has accumulated valuable experiences in coping with the Anthropocene. We have to de-center the debate on the Anthropocene and learn from each other how to meet the challenge in order to guarantee survival for next generations to come.

Keywords: East Asia, Non-Western Epistemologies, Natural Hazards, Risk, Intercultural Dialogue

Profile | Projects | Publications

Department of East Asian Studies, Chinese Studies
Spitalgasse 2, Hof 2 (Campus)
1090 Vienna

Tel: +43-1-4277-42128

BOKU Wien (University of Natural Resources and Life Sciences)
Institut für Soziale Ökologie (SEC)
Schottenfeldgasse 29
1070 Vienna

Tel: +43 1 47654-73712