The Nelson Institute's Center for Culture, History, and Environment (CHE) draws together faculty, staff, graduate students, and others from a wide array of disciplines in the humanities, social sciences, and natural sciences to investigate environmental and cultural change in the full sweep of human history.

Latest News

Read and Listen: Edge Effects Digital Magazine and Podcast

Edge Effects, CHE's Digital Magazine, has a lineup of exciting original essays, commentary, and podcasts this fall. Enjoy recent recommendations of environmental books for the classroom , learn why Americans recycle, and listen to inspiring conversations with podcast guests including Anna Tsing and Louis Warren.  Coming soon Jesse Gant will interview Richard White about his new book on Reconstruction and the Gilded Age, Faron Levesque will give a take on the queer geography of Stranger Things, and Kevin Walters will explore the origins of the Wisconsin Idea. 


Find all content on the Edge Effects  website. Get the podcast sent straight to your mobile device or computer by subscribing through the iTunes store. You can also find episodes on Google Play, Stitcher, and TuneIn, or stream or download directly on the Edge Effects website.


Grads, faculty gather at UW to celebrate Gaylord Nelson's centennial at the 9th Annual CHE Graduate Symposium

Graduate students and faculty representing 13 different institutions from the US and Canada gathered in Madison for a rich weekend of conversation, debate, and service learning in celebration of Gaylord Nelson's centennial. The group, participants in the CHE Graduate Symposium, worked towards building a "new vocabulary" for the environment, a theme created by conference co-organizers and CHE associates Brian Hamilton and Kate Wersan.

Want to learn more?

Read an interview with Symposium participant Dr. Scott Kirsch. 

Peruse the full Symposium schedule and list of participants.

Read an interview with Symposium organizers Brian Hamilton and Kate Wersan.


Thanks to our many conference participants for joining us, and congratulations to the many CHE volunteers involved in hosting the event! 

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Upcoming Events

Tales from Planet Earth: Land is Life
Friday, November 3, 7:00 PM, Union South, Marquee Theater
Standing Rock. Idle No More. The Landless Worker's Movement. Across the globe, new alliances and collective actions are rising up in the struggle for the rights and sovereignty of local peoples to determine their own futures. Our 2017 festival showcases stories that inform, challenge, and inspire us to rethink relationships to land in an era when greed, corruption, and resource demands are threatening the livelihoods, sovereignty, and self-determination of communities throughout the world. The festival features 16 films and visits by activists and filmmakers working to protect indigenous rights around the world.

Symposium in Celebration of CHE’s 10th Anniversary: "Advancing the Interdisciplinary Environment”
Saturday, November 4, 8:30 AM, Fluno Center, 219
This event will feature presentations by ten CHE alumni demonstrating how interdisciplinary training in environmental studies can enhance both academic and non-academic careers. Two sessions will feature alumni working in the academy who will discuss their recent research and scholarship. In a third session, alumni who have pursued careers outside the conventional classroom will discuss their career paths and how those were shaped by their experiences in CHE. This symposium provides a wonderful opportunity to experience the richness of the Environmental Humanities, and anyone interested is invited to attend. Panels running from 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. are free and open to the public. A special panel from 3:30 p.m. to 5:00 p.m. dedicated to conversation concerning future directions for CHE is open to all past and present CHE Associates.

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