Dr Will Smith



DECRA Track Research Fellow


Faculty of Arts and Education


Alfred Deakin Institute


Melbourne Burwood Campus


I am an anthropologist and human geographer whose research is focused on human-forest interfaces, the social dimensions of agricultural production, and the politics of indigenous knowledge in both Australia and upland Southeast Asia. I am the author of Mountains of Blame: Climate and Culpability in the Philippine Uplands, which examines the impact of forest management and climate change on indigenous livelihoods. My current research is focused on the illegal wildlife trade in the Philippines and conservation-based solutions to zoonotic disease emergence.

Read more on Will's profile

Knowledge areas

Biodiversity conservation; Climate change governance; Forest-based livelihoods; Environmental change; Society and politics in the Philippines


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Persuasion without policies: The work of reviving Indigenous peoples' fire management in southern Australia

W Smith, T Neale, J Weir

(2021), Vol. 120, pp. 82-92, Geoforum, Amsterdam, The Netherlands, C1

journal article

Understanding the changing role of global public health in biodiversity conservation

W Smith

(2021), Ambio, C1

journal article

Mountains of Blame: Climate and Culpability in the Philippine Uplands

Will Smith

(2020), Seattle, Wa., A1


Recalibrating burdens of blame: anti-swidden politics and green governance in the Philippine Uplands

W Dressler, W Smith, C Kull, R Carmenta, J Pulhin

(2020), pp. 1-12, Geoforum, Amsterdam, The Netherlands, C1

journal article

Forged in flames: indigeneity, forest fire and geographies of blame in the Philippines

W Smith, W Dressler

(2020), pp. 1-19, Postcolonial studies, Abingdon, Eng., C1

journal article

Beyond Loving Nature: Affective Conservation and Human-pig Violence in the Philippines

Will Smith

(2020), pp. 1-19, Ethnos, London, Eng., C1

journal article

Drought, Food Insecurity, and Cultures of Hunger in the Philippines

Will Smith

(2019), pp. 165-180, Disaster Archipelago: Locating Vulnerability and Resilience in the Philippines, Lanham, MD, B1

book chapter

Governing vulnerability: The biopolitics of conservation and climate in upland Southeast Asia

W Smith, W Dressler

(2019), Vol. 72, pp. 76-86, Political Geography, Amsterdam, The Netherlands, C1

journal article

An eternal flame: The elemental governance of wildfire's pasts, presents and futures

T Neale, A Zahara, W Smith

(2019), Vol. 25, pp. 115-134, Cultural Studies Review, Ultimo, NSW, C1

journal article

Weather from incest: the politics of indigenous climate change knowledge on Palawan Island, the Philippines

W Smith

(2018), Australian journal of anthropology, Chichester, Eng., C1

journal article

Ungovernable? The vital natures of swidden assemblages in an upland frontier

Wolfram Dressler, Will Smith, Marvin Montefrio

(2018), Vol. 61, pp. 343-354, Journal of Rural Studies, Amsterdam, The Netherlands, C1

journal article

Rooted in place? The coproduction of knowledge and space in agroforestry assemblages

W Smith, W Dressler

(2017), Vol. 107, pp. 897-914, Annals of the American Association of Geographers, Abingdon, Eng., C1-1

journal article

REDD policy impacts on Indigenous Property Rights Regimes on Palawan Island, the Philippines

Wolfram Dressler, Melanie McDermott, Will Smith, Juan Pulhin

(2012), Vol. 40, pp. 679-691, Human ecology, New York, N.Y., C1

journal article

Funded Projects at Deakin

Other Funding Sources

Hazards, Culture and Indigenous Communities Utilisation project: Principles for Enhanced Collaboration.

Dr Timothy Neale, Dr Will Smith

  • 2021: $18,231


No completed student supervisions to report