Esme Murdock  is a doctoral student in the Department of Philosophy at Michigan State University. She received her BA in Philosophy from Barnard College of Columbia University in 2010. Her research interests focus on environmental justice, ethics, social and political thought, and feminism. Her current work focuses on the absence of the environmental in political reconciliation theory and the absence of the political within the field of ecological restoration. She aims to investigate why the environmental and the political are not, importantly, considered co-constitutive. She believes in the serious implications environments have on conceptions of identity and political efficacy/recognition as well as the maintenance of an authentic and healthy being in the world.

Dr. Samantha Noll is an Assistant Professor in The School of Politics, Philosophy, and Public Affairs (PPPA) at Washington State University and is affiliated with the Functional Genomics Initiative.  Her research made contributions to the fields of bioethics, environmental philosophy, and philosophy of science. In particular, she’s published widely on topics such as how values impact food systems, food justice and food sovereignty movements, and the application of biotechnology. As she’s an avid gardener and nature lover, she is no stranger to getting her hands dirty. Read more on Noll’s academic site, here!

 Zach Piso is a doctoral student in the Department of Philosophy with a specialization in Environmental Philosophy & Ethics. He received his BA in Environmental Studies from Allegheny College in December 2010 before spending a year working in sustainable urban development. Research interests include pragmatism, philosophy of environmental science, social-ecological systems research, sustainability ethics, and environmental education. He is the MSU research assistant for the NSF-Ethics Education for Science & Engineering project “”Values and Policy in Interdisciplinary Environmental Science: A Dialogue-based Framework for Ethics Education,” which is developing and evaluating ethics modules for graduate-level environmental science and policy programs. He is also composing a multi-sited ethnography based on the Cary Institute for Ecosystem Studies’ “Workshop on Coastal-Fog-as-a-System” to provide a STS narrative of interdisciplinary environmental research. Over the 2013 Summer he is leading the NSF-supported Long-term Ecological Research project, “Recognizing Value Pluralism among Ecosystem Services Experts and Public Stakeholders,” at MSU’s Kellogg Biological Station.

 Ian Werkheiser is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Philosophy at University of Texas Rio Grande Valley and an Affiliated Faculty Member in the Environmental Studies Program. His research is currently focused on how communities of resistance address environmental harms and hazards, particularly around food, while also dealing with social and political oppression or marginalization. He is particularly interested in the ways that UTRGV can become an anchor institution in the Valley and benefit those communities of resistance. A recent graduate from Michigan State University, his dissertation focused on the areas of social epistemology, environmental justice, and food sovereignty. It argued that the presence of community epistemic capacities is a necessary requirement of meaningful political participation, particularly in issues around food and environmental justice.