Concordia University



Kregg Hetherington, PhD

Associate Professor, Sociology and Anthropology

Office: S-H 1125-43 
Henry F. Hall Building,
1455 De Maisonneuve Blvd. W.
Phone: (514) 848-2424 ext. 5258
Website(s): Academia site
Concordia Ethnography Lab

Research interests

Dr. Kregg Hetherington is a political anthropologist specialized in environment, infrastructure and the bureaucratic state. He is also director of the Concordia Ethnography Lab.

He has written extensively about how small farmers caught in a sweeping agrarian transition in Paraguay have experienced that country's halting transition to democracy, showing how activists create new ways of thinking and practising government. His first book, Guerrilla Auditors, is an ethnography of peasant land struggles in Paraguay, and of how rural thinking about property and information come into conflict with bureaucratic reform projects promoted by international experts. A second, forthcoming monograph, The Government of Beans, focuses on regulation in the soybean boom in Latin America's southern cone is transforming the relationship between government, plants, people and territory.

Kregg's current project, Emergent Waters, is a collaborate ethnographic experiment run out of the Ethnography Lab. The project, based in and around Montreal, aims to understand Montreal’s changing relationship with water as a defining feature of its environment and infrastructure. He is currently looking for graduate students who are interested in becoming part of this research team.

Kregg supervises graduate students working in a wide range of areas, including environment and food, Latin American politics, social movements, infrastructure studies and the ethnography of the state.

Primary research and teaching foci

  • Environment and Infrastructure
  • Politics of scientific and expert knowledge and government regulation
  • Social movements, international development and the state
  • Corruption, transparency and bureaucracy
  • Paraguayan and Latin American history and politics
  • Agriculture and food politics
  • Water Infrastructure

2011. Guerrilla Auditors: The Politics of Transparency in Neoliberal Paraguay. Durham: Duke University Press

Teaching activities


Kregg teaches undergraduate classes in anthropological theory, post-humanism and environment, the anthropology of science and technology, and ethnographic writing.

At the graduate level, he teaches ethnographic form, decolonial anthropology, and (as graduate program director) the professional development seminar


Selected publications


In Press The Government of Beans: Regulation, Environment andthe Long Green Revolution. Submitted for review to Duke University Press.

2019 Infrastructure, Environment and Life in theAnthropocene. Edited volume with Duke University Press.

2015 AuditoresCampesinos: transparencia, democracia y neoliberalismo en Paraguay. Asunción: CERI y ServiLibro. (Translation of Guerrilla Auditors, with a new Epilogue.Translation by Carolina Castillo).

2011 Guerrilla Auditors: The Politics ofTransparency in neoliberal Paraguay. Durham: Duke University Press.

2005 Cultivating Utopia: Organic Farmers ina Conventional Landscape. Halifax: Fernwood Press.


Articlesand Book Chapters

In Press “How do Environmental Harms Become Political?” For Routledge Companion to Actor Network Theory, eds Celia Roberts,Ignacio Farras and Anders Blok. Resubmitted August 2018.

2019 “AMonopoly on Killing: Soy, Labour and the Long Green Revolution.” For How Nature Works, eds Alexandre Blanchette,Sarah Besky and Naisargi Dave. Santa Fe: University of New Mexico Press.

2019“Keywords for the Anthropocene.” For Infrastructure, Environment and Life in theAnthropocene. Editedvolume under contract with Duke University Press.

2018 “Peasants, Experts, Clients, and Soybeans: The Fixing of Paraguay’sCivil Service,” Current Anthropology (49: 18S)

2016 “La Soja ante la Ley: Prácticas deconocimiento, responsabilidad y el boom de la soja en Paraguay.” Revista Paraguay desde las Ciencias Sociales7: 177-203. (translation by Alejandra Estigarribia)

2016 “Surveying the Future Perfect: Anthropology,Development and the Promise of Infrastructure,” in Infrastructures and Social Complexity: ARoutledge Companion. Eds. Penny Harvey, Casper Bruun Jensen & AtsuroMorita. Pgs 40-50. London: Routledge.

2014 “Nature,Infrastructure and the State: Rethinking development in Latin America” withJeremy Campbell. Journal of LatinAmerican and Caribbean Anthropology 19(2).

2014 “Regular Soybeans: Translation and framingin the regulation of a mega-crop.” Indiana Journal ofGlobal Legal Studies, 21(1): 55-78.

2014 “La contra-reforma agraria en el Paraguay” in Capitalismo: terra e poder na America Latina(1982-2012). Vol.1, Argentina, Brasil, Chile, Paraguay y Uruguay.  Edited by Guillermo Almeyra, João MárcioMendes Pereira, Luciano Concheiro, Carlos Walter Porto-Gonçalves.  Buenos Aires: Peña Lillo Continente y CLACSO.

2013 “Beans Before theLaw: Knowledge Practices, Responsibility, and the Paraguayan soy boom.” Cultural Anthropology 28(1): 65-85.

2012 “Tierra malhabida y el engaño de lainstitucionalidad.” NovaPolis 5: 31-54.

2012 “Agency, Scaleand Information.” Political and LegalAnthropology Review, 35(2): 241-246.

2012 “Promising Information: Democracy,Development and the Remapping of Latin America.” Economy and Society 41(2):127-150.

2009 “The strategic incoherence of development:Marketing expertise in the World Development Report.” Journal of PeasantStudies 36(3): 665-673.

2009 “Privatizing the Private in Rural Paraguay:Precarious Lots and the Materiality of Rights.” American Ethnologist36(2): 224-241.

2008 “Populist Transparency: the Documentationof Reality in Rural Paraguay.” Journal of Legal Anthropology 1(1):45-69.

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