Ken Conca is a professor of International Relations at American University. His research focuses on global environmental governance; environment, conflict, and peacebuilding; the UN system; and water politics and governance. His most recent book is An Unfinished Foundation: The United Nations and Global Environmental Governance (Oxford, 2015). He is a member of the UN Environment Programme’s Expert Advisory Group on Conflict and Peacebuilding. Previously, he served on the Scientific Steering Committee on Global Environmental Change and Human Security for the International Human Dimensions Program on Global Environmental Change. Dr. Conca is a two-time recipient of the International Studies Association’s Harold and Margaret Sprout Award for best book on international environmental affairs and a recipient of the Chadwick Alger Prize for best book in the field of International Organization. He earned his Ph.D. from the Energy and Resources Group at the University of California, Berkeley.

Project Summary

This project examines the links among climate change, water, and the social construction of risk. Given the many forms of expertise involved in water management, and the many forms of risk management occurring in the water sector, finding common ground on climate/water risks is a significant challenge. The project seeks to understanding how different communities of water experts (in finance, technology, management, science, policy) are defining and acting on climate-driven, water-related risks (scarcity, extremes, disaster, insecurity). The project aims to facilitate dialogue on how to manage uncertainty in climate resilience and adaptation efforts.

Major Publications

An Unfinished Foundation: The United Nations and Global Environmental Governance (Oxford, 2015)
Governing Water: Contentious Transnational Politics and Global Institution Building (MIT, 2006)
Environmental Peacemaking (Woodrow Wilson Center & Johns Hopkins University, 2002)