I am a post-doctoral fellow at the History Department, affiliated to the ECC research group, which is a member of the Ghent Centre for Global Studies of Ghent University, Belgium. I am currently leading a Marie Curie Global Fellowship in collaboration with the Department of Historical and Geographical Sciences at the Universidad de Tarapacá in Arica, Chile, and the NGOs Agua Sustentable and Centro de Ecología y Pueblos Andinos in Bolivia. My research is situated on the crossroads of rural history, environmental humanities, and critical global studies, with a particular interest in Latin America and the Caribbean, more specifically the Andean region. Over the last roughly 13 years, I lived and worked in Belgium, Bolivia, Peru, the UK and Colombia, researching issues around communal land rights and land reform, peasant and indigenous communities, commodity frontiers, socio-environmental conflicts, and more-than-human histories.
In 2014 I received a PhD in History from Ghent University based on my research into communal land rights in indigenous communities of the Andean Highlands and the repercussions of liberal land reforms in late 19th – early 20th century Bolivia. After my PhD research, I moved to Peru as a cooperation worker with the Belgian environmental movement CATAPA to support local NGOs and grassroots movements in Cajamarca, in particular in tackling the social and ecological impact of large-scale mining. I returned to Ghent University, first as a collaborator on the coordination of the Ghent Centre for Global Studies and a teaching assistant, and from 2016 as a postdoctoral fellow (BOF) with a project on the transformation of communal land rights in Bolivia and Peru in relation to expanding commodity frontiers. During this time I was a lecturer in Latin American Studies and Global Studies at the Faculties of Arts & Humanities and Social & Political Sciences. In 2019, I moved to the University of York as a postdoctoral research associate of the Interdisciplinary Global Development Centre. Within a large interdisciplinary team, I conducted research on historical and contemporary socio-environmental transformations in the Colombian páramos surrounding Bogotá. As part of this project, I co-produced a music album, a documentary and an interactive website in collaboration with local researchers, collectives, artists and rural communities. In 2022-2023, still at York, I was supported by an Independent Scholar fellowship of the Independent Social Research Foundation to conduct research on the transformations in the Lake Poopó water basin in Bolivia.
Hanne Cottyn es investigadora postdoctoral en el departamento de Historia, y afiliada al Ghent Centre for Global Studies de la Universidad de Gante, Bélgica.
Lecturer "Area Study: Latin America" (English), Advanced Master in Conflict and Development Studies (Faculty of Political and Social Sciences)
Co-lecturer "Research Seminar Global Studies" (English), Erasmus Mundus Master Programme in "Global Studies"
Guest lecture "Global Theories in Practice: Andean communities & a globalizing land rights regime" - Critical Global Theories (English), Master in History & Erasmus Mundus Master Global Studies.
Guest lecture "World History & indigenous revolutions" - Research Seminar World History (English), Master in History.
Lecturer - "Area Study: Latijns-Amerika" (Dutch), Advanced Master in Conflict and Development Studies (Faculty of Political and Social Sciences).
Co-lecturer - "Critical Global Theories" (English), Master in History (Faculty of Arts and Philosophy).
Guest lecturer - Seminar "Commodity Frontiers / Fronteras de la mercantilización". June 26-27, 2017. Facultad de Ciencias Sociales, Pontificia Universidad Católica del Perú, Lima, Peru.
Coordinator - Global Studies Research Seminar "Frontiers of Globalisation", organized by the Ghent Centre for Global Studies and the UGent Doctoral Schools. Ghent, February-May 2016.
Teaching assistant - "Introduction to World History", 1st year Bachelor in History (A000455 - Inleiding tot de Wereldgeschiedenis, lecturer Prof. Eric Vanhaute).
Teaching assistant - "Research Studies Global Studies and World History", Master in History (A004048 - Onderzoeksseminarie: wereldstudies en wereldgeschiedenis, lecturer Prof. Eric Vanhaute).
Guest lecturer - '"Modern" Latin-America: Modernity and (De)Coloniality", 3rd Bachelor in History (A002630 - Mondiale processen in historisch perspectief, lecturer Prof. Michael Limberger). April 15, 2016.
5.2.2018 - 20.5.2018: Visiting scholar at the Research Center CISEPA of the Pontificia Universidad Católica del Perú (PUCP, Lima). FWO travel grant of "long term research stay abroad". Includes collaboration with NGO IDECA (Puno, Peru) and the Centro de Ecología y Pueblos Andinos (Oruro, Bolivia).
20.2.2017 - 16.8.2017: Visiting scholar at the Pontificia Universidad Católica del Perú (PUCP, Lima) and Centro de Ecología y Pueblos Andinos (Oruro, Bolivia). Travel grant from the Faculty Commission for Internationalization, Faculty of Arts and Philosophy, UGent.
9.12.2011 - 23.4.2012: Affiliated researcher Centro de Ecología y Pueblos Andinos (CEPA), Oruro, Bolivia. Research in Oruro Department, National Archive, Sucre, Bolivia, and in Iquique and Arica, North-Chile.
30.1.2011 - 20.7.2011: Affiliated researcher Centro de Ecología y Pueblos Andinos (CEPA), Oruro, Bolivia. Research in Oruro Department and National Archive, Sucre, Bolivia. (FWO long-term research grant)
1.9.2010 - 1.10.2010: Affiliated researcher Centro de Ecología y Pueblos Andinos (CEPA), Oruro, Bolivia. Research in Oruro Department and National Archive, Sucre, Bolivia.
"Commodity frontiers and community claims. The appropriation and (re)production of communal land rights in the Andean Highlands." Presentation at the CO-LAB The commons in Latin America. Amsterdam, December 12-13, 2017.
"Making Cheap Nature on high altitude. The dialectics of commodity frontier expansion and communal autonomy on the altiplano in the 19th and 21st centuries." Presentation at the 4th International Workshop “Commodity Frontiers and Global Capitalist Expansion: Social, Ecological and Resource Policy Implications”. Dubai, December 6-7, 2017.
with Prof. Eric Vanhaute (Ghent University) "Commodity frontiers and the transformation of the countryside. Systemic versus community resilience?" Presentation at the International Workshop Shocks and Hazards in History: Vulnerability and Resilience. Antwerp, November 27-28, 2017.
with Drs. Dieter Bruneel and Drs. Pieter De Reu (Ghent University). "Property practices. A critical, global and comparative approach towards property rights in land." Presentation at the International Conference Paradigms of Change in Modernising Asia and America. Ghent, October 13, 2017.
"The rural Andes between community and commodity: Questioning community “survival” in the face of the “end” of cheap nature." Presentation at the Third annual conference of the World-Ecology Research Network. Binghamton (NY), USA. July 20-21, 2017.
"Renegociando la autonomía comunitaria. Las comunidades de Carangas frente las reformas liberales – Bolivia, siglo XIX." in panel Between Community and Commodity: The Transformation of Communal Land Systems in Bolivia, 19th to 21st Centuries. Presentation and panel organizer at the Latin American Studies Association conference. Lima, Peru. April 29-May 1, 2017.
With Prof. Cecilia Carrizo (Universidad Nacional de Córdoba, Argentina) “Organización comunitaria enfrentando la expansión de la frontera minera: Cajamarca (Perú) y Córdoba (Argentina).” Presentation at the 2° Congreso Internacional Los Pueblos Indígenas de América Latina. Siglos XIX-XXI. Santa Rosa de la Pampa, Argentina. September 20-25, 2016.
"A world-systems frontier perspective to land: Unravelling the uneven trajectory of land rights standardization." Presentation at the International Conference “Political Ecologies of Conflict, Capitalism and Contestation (PE – 3C)”. Wageningen, July 7-9, 2016.
"A World-Systems Frontier Perspective to Land: Unravelling the Uneven Trajectory of Land Rights Standardization." Presentation at the World History Association Conference. Ghent, July 3-5, 2016.
"Between indigenous community and urban elite. Bolivian provincial town residents and the defence of communal land rights at the turn of the 20th century." Presentation at the LANDac Annual International Land Conference. Utrecht, 30 June – 1 July 2016.
with Prof. Eric Vanhaute (Ghent University). "The Great Commodification. A Historical, Comparative and Global Perspective on Land Regimes and Land Reforms" ICAS colloquium "Global governance/politics, climate justice & agrarian/social justice: linkages and challenges." Den Haag, February 4-5, 2016.
Panel discussant "Land reforms and peasant rebellions in world history, 18th-21st centuries." International Conference Old and New Worlds: the Global Challenges of Rural History. Lisbon, January 27-30, 2016.
"A frontier perspective towards the commodification of land. Incorporation and resistance in the Andes." Presentation at the Commodity Frontiers workshop, organized by the Commodity Frontiers Initiative. International Institute for Social History, Amsterdam, The Netherlands. December 4-5, 2015.
"The standardization of land rights: historical transitions in land rights regimes." Presentation at the Flemish Interuniversity Network on Law and Development (Law&Dev) Annual Research Day. Ghent, September 25, 2015.
Conference organization "Las luchas sociales por la tierra en América Latina." International Conference. Universidad Nacional Mayor de San Marcos, Lima, Peru. June 24-25, 2015.
Panel organization "The local trajectories of global frontiers of land control.” Panel at the World History Association Conference. San José, Costa Rica. July 16-18, 2014.
"Keeping enclosure at bay: Liberal land reform and communal land rights in Carangas (Bolivia), 1866-1952." Presentation at the U4 Conference (Ghent Centre for Global Studies). Ghent, Belgium. June 27, 2014.
“Frontiers: een wereldhistorisch perspectief op plattelandsgeschiedenis.” Presentation at the Spring meeting of the Dutch Association for Agrarian History. Wageningen, The Netherlands. April 4, 2014.
“A story of thwarted enclosure: Land rights and ethnic boundaries in Carangas (Bolivia), 1866-1952.” paper presented at the Workshop "Frontiers and Borders in Global and Transnational History” (UGent Research Group Communities Comparisons Connections, NW Posthumus network Drivers and Carriers of Globalization). Ghent, Belgium. September 6-7, 2013.
“Global land commodification, national land reform and communal land tenure in Carangas (Bolivia), 19th-20th centuries.” paper presented at the Rural History Conference 2013, European Rural History Organisation (EURHO). Bern, Switzerland. August 19-22, 2013.
"The balance of indigenous autonomy from and interaction with “the outside world” in the context of Bolivian state formation. Cross-border mobility and negotiation on the border in Carangas (1860-1930)." Presentation at the 21st WHA Conference (World History Association). Albuquerque, USA. June 27-30, 2012.
“Indigenous mobility and transnational networks in the context of liberal state formation in Bolivia (1860-1930)." Presentation at the annual Postumus Conference (N.W. Posthumus Institute). Amsterdam, The Netherlands. May 24-25, 2012.
“Carangas en movimiento. La participación indígena en redes transfronterizas y «la experiencia andina del liberalismo boliviano» (1860-1930).” Presentation at the Coloquio internacional Aproximaciones a la etnohistoria de Jach’a Carangas. Oruro, Bolivia. April 9-10, 2012.
“Pastoralist communities, their struggles and archives on the Bolivian Altiplano.” Research Group meeting of the Centre for Amerindian, Latin American and Caribbean Studies. St. Andrews, United Kingdom. October 5, 2011.
“La reorientación de las comunidades de Carangas dentro de los circuitos económicos del espacio andino (1860-1930).” Presentation at the VIII Congreso Internacional de Etnohistoria. Sucre, Bolivia. June 26-29, 2011.
“Reforma agraria y comunidades originarias desde una perspectiva del sistema-mundo. El proceso de titulación de tierras en Turco (Oruro, Bolivia).” Presentation at the VIII Congreso Internacional de Etnohistoria. Sucre, Bolivia. June 26-29, 2011.
“The Andean rural space at the crossroad of mining and peasant communities. The regional trajectories of Carangas and Paria, 1860-1930.” Presentation at the ESTER/GLOBALEURONET Research Design Course. Vienna, Austria. November 23-27, 2010.
“Andean trajectories at the crossroad of mining and rural livelihoods. The competition over land and natural resources on the Bolivian highlands: connecting local strategies to world historical processes. Carangas and Poopó, 1880-1930.” Commodities of Empire Project. International Workshop Local forms of production as resistance against global domination: Anti-commodities(IISH). Amsterdam, The Netherlands. June 18-19, 2010.
“Andean trajectories at the crossroad of mining and rural livelihoods. The form(ul)ation of coping strategies in response to the competition over land and natural resources in the 19th and 20th centuries.” Presentation at the seminar “Work in progress” (N.W. Posthumus Institute, IISH). Amsterdam, The Netherlands. April 22-23, 2010.
“The Land Reform Project in Bolivia, 1953-2006. The Effects for Aymara Communities of the Altiplano through a World-Systemic Lens.” Presentation at the SLAS Conference 2010. Bristol, United Kingdom. April 9-10, 2010.
Moderator and co-organizer public debate "Peace, Protest and Peasants. Colombia, a peace under threat." Department of Conflict and Development Studies and CATAPA vzw. Ghent, December 11, 2017.
Panelist public debate "Genetically Engineering trees for a sustainable energy transition? Insights from the South-American experience." Organized by Field Liberation Movement, Commodity Frontiers Initiative and Research Group Economies, Comparisons, Connectionis (Ghent University). Ghent, November 20, 2017.
Panelist public debate "Día de la raza." Organized by MO* and Red Star Line Museum. Antwerpen, October 6, 2017.
Workshop "Las industrias extractivas y conflictos sociales desde una perspectiva global." School for Environmental Leaders, Centro de Ecología y Pueblos Andinos. Oruro, Bolivia. June 17, 2017.
Workshop "Tierra y territorio en la historia de Jach’a Karangas", organized by Centro de Ecología y Pueblos Andinos and Concejo Occidental de Ayllus y Markas Jach'a Karangas. Oruro, Bolivia. June 2, 2017.
Invited lecturer - "Grondstoffenbeheer als mondiale uitdaging: tussen neo-extractivisme en post-extractivisme." Infocycle of the Belgian Development Agency (BTC). Brussels, Belgium. December 4, 2016.
Panelist public debate "Het goede leven: antwoord op de grenzen van het kapitalisme?" Organized by NGO Broederlijk Delen. Ghent, November 16, 2016.
Coordinator - Global Studies Public Lecture Series "Frontiers of Globalisation", organized by the Ghent Centre for Global Studies. Ghent, February-May 2016.
Co-organizer - International Conference "Social struggles for land in Latin America. An historical, comparative and global analysis." (Las luchas sociales por la tierra en América Latina. Un análisis histórico, comparativo y global). Organized by the Ghent Centre for Global Studies (Belgium), the National University of San Marcos (Peru) and Red Muqui (Peru). Lima, Peru, 24-25 June 2015.
Member Employability Board, Erasmus Mundus Master programme "Global Studies" (EMGS)