Professor Sango Mahanty

Professor
Crawford School of Public Policy

I am a human geographer and study the politics of social and environmental change. My recent ARC Future Fellowship explored these related themes in a region of rapid social and environmental change along the Cambodia-Vietnam border. My current work in this region examines how communities and civil society are responding to dramatic processes of nature-society transformation or “rupture”. I have collaborated with civil society and government in Australia and the Asia-Pacific, and currently lead the Resources, Environment and Development Program at ANU’s Crawford School of Public Policy. I also teach postgraduate courses on social impact assessment and pollution/waste.

Research interests

Areas of expertise

Human Geography

Studies Of Asian Society

Natural Resource Management

Environment Policy

Research Interests

Political ecology

Agrarian change

Development studies

Mainland Southeast Asia (Vietnam, Cambodia)

Filer, C, Mahanty, S & Potter, L 2020. ‘The FPIC principle meets land struggles in Cambodia, Indonesia and Papua New Guinea’, Land, vol. 9, no. 3, pp. 1-21.

Mahanty, S. 2019, ‘A tale of two networks: Market formation on the Cambodia-Vietnam frontier’, Transactions of the Institute of British Geographers, pp. 1-16.

To, X, Mahanty, S & Wells-Dang, A 2019, ‘From “land to the tiller” to the “new landlords”? The debate over Vietnam’s latest land reforms’, Land, vol. 8, no. 120, pp. 1-19.

Milne, S, Mahanty, S, To, X et al. 2019, ‘Learning from ‘actually existing’ REDD+: A synthesis of ethnographic findings’, Conservation and Society, vol. 17, no. 1, pp. 84-95.

Mahanty, S 2019, ‘Shadow Economies and the State: A Comparison of Cassava and Timber Networks on the Cambodia-Vietnam Frontier’, Journal of Contemporary Asia, vol. 49, no. 2, pp. 193-215.

Milne, S & Mahanty, S 2019, ‘Value and bureaucratic violence in the green economy’, Geoforum, vol. 98, pp. 133-143.

Mahanty, S 2019, ‘A tale of two networks: Market formation on the Cambodia-Vietnam frontier’, Transactions of the Institute of British Geographers, pp. 1-16

Swainson, L. and Mahanty, S. Green economy meets political economy: Lessons from the “Aceh Green” initiative, Indonesia. Global Environmental Change. DOI: 10.1016/j.gloenvcha.2018.10.009

Milne, S., Mahanty, S., Dressler, W., To, P.X., Kanowski, P. and Thavat, M. 2018 Learning From ‘Actually Existing’ REDD+: A Synthesis of Ethnographic Findings. Conservation and Society. DOI: 10.4103/cs.cs_18_13

Mahanty, S. 2018. Contingent Sovereignty: Cross-Border Rentals in the Cambodia–Vietnam Borderland. Annals of the American Association of Geographers 108 (3):829-844. doi: 10.1080/24694452.2017.1374162.

To, P.X., Dressler, W. and Mahanty, S. 2017. REDD+ for Red Books? Negotiating rights to land and livelihoods through carbon governance in the Central Highlands of Vietnam. Geoforum. 81: 163-173.

Dressler, W., Wilson, D., Clendenning, R., Keenan, R., Mahanty, S., Bruun, T, Mertz, O., Lasco, R. 2016. The impact of swidden decline on livelihoods and ecosystem services in Southeast Asia: A review of the evidence from 1990 to 2015. Ambio.

Mahanty, S and Milne S 2016 Anatomy of a boom: cassava as a ‘gateway’ crop in Cambodia’s north-eastern borderland, Asia Pacific Viewpoint.

To, P, Mahanty, S and Dressler, W 2016 Moral economies and markets: ‘Insider’ cassava trading in Kon Tum, Vietnam, Asia Pacific Viewpoint.

Beckmann, E and Mahanty, S 2016 The evolution and evaluation of an online role play through design-based research, Australasian Journal of Educational Technology.

Neimark, B, Mahanty, S & Dressler, W 2016, ‘Mapping Value in a ‘Green’ Commodity Frontier: Revisiting Commodity Chain Analysis’, Development and Change, vol. 47, no. 2, pp. 240-265.

Dressler, W, Wilson, D, Clendenning, J et al 2015, ‘Examining how long fallow swidden systems impact upon livelihood and ecosystem services outcomes compared with alternative land-uses in the uplands of Southeast Asia’, Journal of Development Effectiveness, vol. 7, no. 2, pp. 210-229.

Mahanty, S & Dang, T 2015, ‘Between ‘state’ and ‘society’: Commune authorities and the environment in Vietnam’s craft villages’, Asia Pacific Viewpoint, vol. 56, no. 2, pp. 267-281.

To, P, Mahanty, S & Dressler, W 2014, ‘A new landlord’ (địa chủ mới)? Community, land conflict and State Forest Companies (SFCs) in Vietnam’, Forestry Policy and Economics, vol 58 (2015), pp 21–28

Dressler, W., Mahanty, S., Clendenning, J. and To, P. 2014. Rearticulating Governance through Carbon in the Lao PDR? Environment and Planning C, vol. 33 no. 5, pp 1265-1283

Milne, S & Mahanty, S (ed) 2015, Conservation and Development in Cambodia: Exploring frontiers of change in nature, state and society, Routledge, London and New York.

Mahanty, S & Milne, S 2015, ‘The forest carbon commodity chain in Cambodia’s voluntary carbon market’, in Milne, S and Mahanty, S (ed.), Conservation and Development in Cambodia: Exploring frontiers of change in nature, state and society, Routledge, London and New York, pp. 177-200.

Milne, S & Mahanty, S 2015, ‘The political ecology of Cambodia’s transformation’, in Milne, S and Mahanty, S (ed.), Conservation and Development in Cambodia: Exploring frontiers of change in nature, state and society, Routledge, London and New York, pp. 1-27.

Mahanty, S. and Dang. T.D. in press. Between ‘state’ and ‘society’: commune authorities and the environment in Vietnam’s craft villages. Asia Pacific Viewpoint.

To, P., Mahanty, S. and Dressler, W. 2014. Social networks of corruption in the Vietnamese and Lao cross-border timber trade. Anthropological Forum, 24 (2): 154-174 [30% contribution]

Dang, T. and Mahanty, S. (with S. Mackay). 2013. “Living with pollution”: juggling environmental and social risk in Vietnam’s craft villages. Critical Asian Studies. 45 (4): 643-667.

Dressler, W., To, P. X. & Mahanty, S. 2013. How Biodiversity Conservation Policy Accelerates Agrarian Differentiation: The Account of an Upland Village in Vietnam, Conservation and Society, 11, 130-143.

Mahanty, S. & McDermott, C. L. 2013. How does ‘Free, Prior and Informed Consent’ (FPIC) impact social equity? Lessons from mining and forestry and their implications for REDD+. Land Use Policy, 35, 406-416.

Mahanty, S., Dressler, W., Milne, S., Filer, C., 2013. Unravelling property relations around forest carbon. Singapore Journal of Tropical Geography 34, 188-205.

Tacconi, L., Mahanty, S., Suich, H., 2013. The Livelihood Impacts of Payments for Environmental Services and Implications for REDD+. Society and Natural Resources 26, 733-744.

Mahanty, S, Tacconi, L & Suich, H 2013, ‘Access and benefits in payments for environmental services and implications for REDD+: lessons from seven PES schemes’, Land Use Policy, 31, pp. 38-47. [hide]

McDermott, M., Mahanty, S. and Schreckenberg, K. 2013, ‘Examining equity: A multidimensional framework for assessing equity in payments for ecosystem services’, Environmental Science and Policy, vol. Available online 2 November 2012.](https://researchers-anu-edu-au.virtual.anu.edu.au/publications/76571)

Mahanty, S & Dang, T 2012, ‘Crafting sustainability? The Potential and Limits of Institutional Design in Managing Water Pollution from Vietnam’s Craft Villages’, Society and Natural Resources, vol. Published online 15 Oct 2012, pp. 1-16.(https://researchers-anu-edu-au.virtual.anu.edu.au/publications/76502)

Mahanty, S, Milne, S, Dressler, W, Filer, C 2012, ‘The Social Life of Forest Carbon: Property and Politics in the Production of a New Commodity’, Human Ecology, vol. 40, no. 5, pp. 661-664.

To, P, Dressler, W, Mahanty, S et al, 2012. ‘The Prospects for Payment for Ecosystem Services (PES) in Vietnam: A Look at Three Payment Schemes’, Human Ecology, 40(2012), pp. 237-249. DOI 10.1007/s10745-012-9480-9.

Mahanty, S, Tacconi, L & Suich, H 2013, ‘Access and benefits in payments for environmental services and implications for REDD+: lessons from seven PES schemes’, Land Use Policy, 31, pp. 38-47.

Tacconi, L, Mahanty, S & Suich, H, eds, 2010, Payments for environmental services, forest conservation and climate change. Livelihoods in the REDD?, Edward Elgar, Cheltenham.

Mahanty, S, Yasmi, Y, Guernier, J et al 2009, ‘Relationships, learning and trust: lessons from the SNV-RECOFTC partnership’, Development in Practice, vol. 19, no. 7, pp. 859-872.

Mahanty, S, Guernier, J & Yasmi, Y 2009, ‘A Fair Share? Sharing the benefits and costs of collaborative forest management’, International Forestry Review, vol. 11, no. 2, pp. 268-280.

Lee, E & Mahanty, S 2009, Payments for Environmental Services and Poverty Reduction: Risks and Opportunities, RECOFTC.

Mahanty, S, Stacey, N, Holland, P et al 2007, ‘Learning to learn: Designing monitoring plans in the Pacific Islands International Waters Project’, Ocean and Coastal Management, vol. 50, pp. 392-410.

Mahanty, S, Gronow, J, Nurse, M et al 2006, ‘Reducing Poverty through Community Based Forest Management in Asia’, Journal of Forest and Livelihood, vol. 5, no. 1, pp. 78-89.

Keen, M, Mahanty, S & Sauvage, J 2006, ‘Sustainability Assessment and Local Government: Achieving Innovation through Practitioner Networks.’, Local Environment: the international journal of justice and sustainability, vol. 11, no. 2, pp. 201-216.

Keen, M & Mahanty, S 2006, ‘Learning in sustainable natural resource management: Challenges and opportunities in the Pacific’, Society and Natural Resources, vol. 19, no. 6, pp. 497-513.

Mahanty, S, Fox, J, Nurse, M, Stephen, P and McClees, L. (Eds), 2006, Hanging in the Balance: Equity in Community-Based Natural Resource Management in Asia, East West Center, Honolulu.

Mahanty, S 2003, ‘Insights from a Cultural Landscape:Lessons from Landscape History for the Management of Rajiv Gandhi (Nagarahole) National Park’, Conservation and Society, vol. 1, no. 1, pp. 23-47.

Mahanty, S, 2002, NGOs, Agencies and Donors in Participatory Conservation: Tales from Nagarahole. Economic and Political Weekly, 37 (36): 3757-3765.

Mahanty, S & Russell, D 2002, ‘High Stakes: lessons from stakeholder groups in the Biodiversity Conservation Network’, Society and Natural Resources, vol. 15, no. 2, pp. 179-188.

Mahanty, S 2002, ‘Conservation and Development Interventions as Networks: The Case of the India Ecodevelopment Project, Karnataka’, World Development, vol. 30, no. 8, pp. 1369-1386.

Student projects

Primary Supervision Role:

Ratchada Arpornsilp, Grassroots environmental movements in an authoritarian state: resource conflicts in Thailand’s Special Economic Zones Sarou Long, Indigenous Communal Land Title in Cambodia

Teaching

Social Impact Assessment: theory and practice (ANTH8028)

Toxic: Managing Pollution and Waste (EMDV8017)