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Pamela McElwee

Rutgers University

Based in

United States
North America

Pamela McElwee is Professor of Human Ecology at Rutgers University. Her research focuses on strategies for climate mitigation, ecosystem services valuation, and biodiversity conservation, aimed at helping reduce vulnerabilities and design fair climate and land policies. Her research has been funded by the National Science Foundation, Carnegie Corporation, and MacArthur Foundation. She also serves as the section editor for Social Science & Anthropology at the journal PLOS Climate and is the chapter lead on ecosystems for the U.S. Fifth National Climate Assessment. McElwee has served as lead author for both IPCC and IPBES. She began her career as an environmental advisor to Senator Al Gore and served in the Clinton White House.

Country(ies) of Specialty

United States Vietnam

Focus areas of expertise

Climate policy and politics Net Zero Climate Justice Scientific assessments

How to Connect



McElwee, P.D. (2022). “Advocating afforestation, betting on bioenergy: Land-based negative emissions technologies (NETs) and agrarian livelihoods in the global South,” Journal of Peasant Studies,

Pascual, U., McElwee, P.D., Diamond, S.E., Ngo, H.T., Bai, X., Cheung, W.W.L., Lim, M., Steiner, N., Agard, J., Donatti, C. I., Duarte, C.M, Leemans, R., Managi, S., Pires, A. P. F., Reyes-García, V., Trisos, C., Scholes, R.J., and Pörtner, H.-O. (2022). “Governing for transformative change across the biodiversity-climate-society nexus.” Bioscience 72

Pamela McElwee, 2021. “The politics of climate vulnerability in Asia.” Education about Asia, Spring 2021.

Pamela McElwee, 2021. “Anthropological engagements with integrated assessment modeling.” Economic Anthropology (Jan 2021): doi:10.1002/sea2.12196

Pamela McElwee, 2020. “The social lives of climate reports.” Anthropology News (April 2020).

Pamela McElwee, 2020. “Are we at a climate tipping point?” Current History (Jan).

Pamela McElwee, 2020.  “Vietnam fighting sea level rise: Victim or enabler?” Episteme, vol 1.

Pamela McElwee et al. 2020. “The impact of interventions in the global land and agri-food sectors on Nature’s Contributions to People and the UN Sustainable Development Goals.” Global Change Biology 26(9):4691-4721.

Jessica O’Reilly,  Cindy Isenhour, Pamela McElwee and Ben Orlove. 2020. “Climate change: expanding anthropological possibilities.” Annual Review of Anthropology 49: 13-29

Pamela McElwee, 2017. “Vietnam’s urgent task of adapting to climate change.” Current History (Sept).

Pamela McElwee et al. 2017. Using REDD+ policy to facilitate climate adaptation at the local level: Synergies and challenges in Vietnam.” Forests 8(1), 11

Pamela McElwee et al. 2017. “Flood vulnerability among rural households in the Red River Delta of Vietnam: Implications for future climate change risk and adaptation.” Natural Hazards 86(1): 465-492