Emily Amburgey

labour migration, climate change, territoriality, state building, Himalayas, Nepal

Emily’s work focuses on transnational labour migration, climate change, and state restructuring processes in the Himalayas of Nepal. She is currently exploring different streams of migration from Mustang, Nepal to Northeast India and New York City. She also looks at how climate change and infrastructural projects in these high altitude mountain communities connect to patterns of mobility and transform local livelihoods.

Emily engages with documentary filmmaking and photography to highlight environmental and social change.


Emily Amburgey is a PhD candidate in Anthropology and part of the Liu Scholar Program and Public Scholars Initiative at UBC. Her research explores issues of transnational labour migration, climate change, territoriality, state formation processes, and the transformation of ethnic identities.

In addition to this, Emily assisted Dr. Sara Shneiderman (Associate Professor in the Department of Anthropology and School of Public Policy & Global Affairs at UBC) with the SSHRC Partnership Development Grant, Expertise, Labour, and Mobility in Nepal’s Post-Conflict, Post-Disaster Reconstruction: Construction, Finance and Law as Domains of Social Transformation, a multi-disciplinary project addressing Nepal’s ongoing state restructuring and catastrophic earthquakes of 2015.

Emily earned a Research MSc in International Development Studies from the University of Amsterdam, and a BA in Anthropology from the University of California, Santa Cruz.