Research Associate

Erica von Essen

Erica is heading up the empirical opening on boar biopolitics in the institutional arena: Brussels. Erica has a strong interest in all things hunting and human-wildlife relations.

Erica von Essen is an associate professor of Environmental Communication (from the Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences) now working with the Department of Social Anthropology at Stockholm University. She is a research associate attached to CAS/BOAR project. Her PhD was on illegal killing of large carnivores in Sweden. Following this, she has led projects on changing hunting ethics, regimes of killability for various species and countryside resistance. 

Erica is a “a non-disciplinary” researcher.  She conducts empirical and theoretical research on human-animal relations in modern society. She has looked at the scope of human-wildlife interactions including conflicts, culling, ethics and animal rights, wildlife tourism, digital animal encounter, wildlife management, rewilding and welfare She is especially knowledgeable in matters pertaining to wolves and the wild boar. Erica’s most recent research interest is technology and how it mediates human-wildlife relations. In an enduring collaboration with Professor of Social, Political and Legal Philosophy Michael Allen (East Tennessee State University), Erica has sought to develop analytical and normative ethics frameworks for wild animals in the Anthropocene, including relational approaches.

Erica’s work can be found across criminology, sociology, geography, communication, philosophy and animal studies journals of various kinds, with over 50 peer-reviewed publications in seven years. She also has a frequent presence in national news media on matters pertaining to poaching, hunting and wolf management. Erica has been invited to speak at both the Swedish and EU parliament on the Habitats Directive.


2016 | Ph.D. in Environmental Communication, Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences
2012 | Masters Degree in Sustainable Development, Uppsala University
2010 | Bachelor of Social Sciences, Uppsala University (geography, social anthropology)

Selected publications


See ResearchGate or Google Scholar for full list.