PhD Candidate

Parks and Peace in the Anthropocene: A Critical Legal Review of Transboundary Conservation
Elaine Hsiao is a doctoral student at the Institute for Resources, Environment and Sustainability at UBC, and she is closely affiliated with the Centre for Law & the Environment. Her pioneering research seeks to promote transboundary conservation areas for peace and cooperation in areas with a history of or on-going armed conflict. Many of the world’s major armed conflicts have occurred in vulnerable ecological areas, such as biodiversity hotspots, drylands and mountains. Seeking to transcend conflicts and historical divisions, peace parks strive to realize a broad ideal of peace, encompassing international peace between nations, social peace between and within communities, and ecological peace within socio-ecosystems. Elaine’s PhD research uses critical legal methods to map socio-political influences on peace park legal frameworks, then identifies the different typologies of legal frameworks and compares the effectiveness of variant legal formulations in promoting international, social and ecological peace based on an evaluation of conservation and peace indicators.