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Renhui (Lola) Chen


Research Assistant

  • M.S. Environment & Sustainability, University of Michigan, 2021
  • M.A. International and Regional Studies, University of Michigan, 2022 (expected)
  • B.S. Environmental Science, Tongji University, 2018
Research Interests

I'm currently studying at the School for the Environment and Sustainability (SEAS), pursuing both Behavior, Education, Communication (BEC) track and Environmental Justice track (EJ) to address problems in mainstream conservation narratives and its impact on marginalized groups. I am also pursuing a degree in African Studies at College of Literature, Science, and the Arts (LSA)'s International Institute to focus my attention on wildlife conservation in African countries and its relation to forestry policies influenced by the state, BINGOs, and other international organizations. Currently, I'm specifically interested in pangolin conservation/commercial wildlife hunting in Cameroon.

My current research goal is to complicate the current homogenous wildlife conservation narrative that takes the ease on blaming people of color and communities in the Global South as key actors in driving international wildlife trade. There are a lot more ways to help wildlife conservation other than the pervasive "demand reduction campaigns" and " law enforcement". If only we could reflect more upon the bias in mainstream conservation narratives and understand better of the power dynamics in the human dimension of conservation.