I am an anthropologist and linguist trained in the UK and the Netherlands.
My research focuses on language endangerment and global cultural diversity, in particular on the Himalayan region (Nepal, northern India, Bhutan and cultural Tibet).
I am the Program Director of the Yale Himalaya Initiative, and I teach at Cambridge and Yale universities, where I also direct two international research projects, Digital Himalaya and the World Oral Literature Project. I edit the Oral Literature Series with the Open Book Publishers and co-edit the journal Himalaya. I am the presenter of a new, three-part BBC radio series on language endangerment and policy entitled Our Language in Your Hands. The episodes are freely available online, Nepal: BBC_OLIYH_Nepal_03Dec2012.mp3 South Africa: BBC_OLIYH_SouthAfrica_10Dec2012.mp3 and New York City: BBC_OLIYH_NYC_17Dec2012.mp3
I am interested in language policy and activism in the context of mother tongue instruction, and also questions about the access and ownership of anthropological materials from ethnographic museums when they circulate online or are returned to source communities in digital form. I am a firm advocate of collaborative research, and am committed to widening public engagement with anthropology.