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“Kyle Whyte was willing to share his time and also his insightful perspectives.” — Loyola University, 2021

Kyle Whyte is George Willis Pack Professor of Environment and Sustainability at the University of Michigan. Kyle’s research addresses moral and political issues concerning climate policy and indigenous peoples, the ethics of cooperative relationships between Indigenous peoples and science organizations, and problems of Indigenous justice in public and academic discussions of food sovereignty, environmental justice, and the anthropocene. He is an enrolled member of the Citizen Potawatomi Nation.

Kyle currently serves on the White House Environmental Justice Advisory Council. He has served as an author for the U.S. Global Change Research Program, and is a former member of the Advisory Committee on Climate Change and Natural Resource Science in the U.S. Department of Interior and of two environmental justice work groups convened by past state governors of Michigan.

Kyle is involved with a number organizations that advance Indigenous research and education methodologies and environmental justice, including the Climate and Traditional Knowledges Workgroup, the Sustainable Development Institute of the College of Menominee Nation, the Affiliated Tribes of Northwest Indians, Michigan Environmental Justice Coalition, Pesticide Action Network, and Ngā Pae o te Māramatanga New Zealand’s Māori Centre of Research Excellence.

Kyle’s work has received the Bunyan Bryant Award for Academic Excellence from Detroiters Working for Environmental Justice, Michigan State University’s Distinguished Partnership and Engaged Scholarship awards, and grants from the National Science Foundation.

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Too Late for Indigenous Climate Justice: Ecological and Relational Tipping Points

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Indigenous Climate Justice: Stopping Pipelines, Decolonizing Climate Science, Indigenizing Futures

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Indigenous Environmental Justice: Anti-Colonial Action Through Kinship

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Beyond Reserves: Indigenous Peoples and Energy Justice

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Indigenous Dystopias, Colonial Fantasies: Environmental Justice and the Climate Crisis

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A Call for Kinship: Indigenous Perspectives on Wilderness Areas, National Parks & Public Lands

  • Indigenous peoples have ancient traditions of knowledge relevant to conservation, environmental protection, and the importance of biodiversity.
  • Concepts of “wilderness” and practices like “fortress conservation” served in different ways to displace Indigenous peoples from their lands in the U.S. and abroad, and to denigrate Indigenous environmental traditions and knowledge.
  • Alternatives include Indigenous concepts of land and water that do not rely on the idea of humans as separate from the land, the growing practice of Indigenous-run parks and conservation areas, and the establishment of co-management relationships between Indigenous peoples, including Tribal nations, and federal, state, and local governments.
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Transformative Partnerships and Indigenous Peoples: Ethics, Allyship, and Collaboration (for academic, governmental, and environmental organizations)

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Indigenous Rights, Reconciliation, and Climate Change

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Renewing Relatives: Indigenous Food Sovereignty

Kyle’s Essays and Articles

Resources for Teachers

Kyle’s CV

Honors, Awards & Recognition

White House Environmental Justice Advisory Council member
Management Committee of the Michigan Environmental Justice Coalition
Board of Directors of the Pesticide Action Network North America
Resilient American Roundtable of the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine.

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