Annika Ericksen


Annika is a cultural anthropologist with specific interests in environmental anthropology, rural livelihoods, climate change, and international development. Most of her research has been with nomadic pastoralists in Mongolia and Niger. She studies the ways that pastoralists blend traditional knowledge with new strategies to meet the challenges of environmental stresses and disasters (such as severe winters in Mongolia and drought in Niger). She is also interested in the political and historical contexts of pastoralists' relationships to central governments, and cultural changes that impact the ways in which risk to pastoral livelihoods is perceived and governed.

At Gustavus, Annika she seeks to raise students' awareness of opportunities for, and benefits from, intercultural engagement. This goal relates to her experience tutoring immigrants in English as a Second Language during college. Service blended with learning, complementing her anthropology major, and inspiring travel and other forms of service during and after college.

Annika's first job, post B.A., was as a residential counselor at a home for disabled and vulnerable adults in Seattle. She then taught English in South Korea and served in the Peace Corps in Mongolia. These experiences ultimately led her to pursue a career in anthropology, which would allow her to continue to travel, learn languages, and gain insight into other ways of life. She is inspired by the ways in which many anthropologists apply their skills to humanitarian, public health, and environmental goals, and emphasizes these applications in her teaching.


PhD and MA, University of Arizona; BA, Macalester College

Courses Taught

Synonym Title Times Taught Terms Taught
S/A-111 Cultural Anthropology 22 2020/SP, 2019/SP, 2018/FA, 2018/SP, 2017/FA, 2017/SP, 2016/FA, 2016/SP, 2015/FA, 2015/SP, and 2014/FA
S/A-244 ST:Anthrop & Climate 5 2019/FA, 2018/FA, 2016/FA, 2015/SP, and 2014/FA
S/A-255 Sustainability 3 2020/SP, 2019/SP, and 2018/SP
FTS-100 FTS:Food & Culture 3 2018/FA, 2017/FA, and 2015/FA
S/A-245 Humans & Animals 1 2019/FA
S/A-204 Oral History MN Land 1 2018/JN