Situating Data in a Trumpian Era: The Environmental Data and Governance Initiative

Lindsey Dillon, Rebecca Lave, Becky Mansfield, Sara Wylie, Nicholas Shapiro, Anita Say Chan, Michelle Murphy

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The Trump administration’s antienvironmental policies and its proclivity to dismiss evidence-based claims creates challenges for environmental politics in a warming world. This article offers the Environmental Data and Governance Initiative (EDGI) as a case study of one way to respond to this political moment. EDGI was started by a small group of Science and Technology Studies and environmental justice researchers and activists in the United States and Canada immediately after the November 2016 elections. Since then, EDGI has engaged in four primary activities: archiving Web pages and online scientific data from federal environmental agencies; monitoring changes to these agencies’ Web sites; interviewing career staff at the Environmental Protection Agency and the Occupational Safety and Health Administration as a means of tracking changes within those agencies; and analyzing shifts in environmental policy. Through these projects and practices, EDGI members developed the concept of environmental data justice. Environmental data justice is deeply informed by feminist approaches to the politics of knowledge, especially in relation to critical data and archival studies. In this article we establish the theoretical basis for environmental data justice and demonstrate how EDGI enacts this framework in practice. Key Words: critical data studies, environmental data justice, feminist science studies, the politics of knowledge, social practice.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)545-555
Number of pages11
JournalAnnals of the American Association of Geographers
Issue number2
StatePublished - Mar 4 2019


  • estudios de ciencia feminista
  • estudios de datos críticos
  • justicia de datos ambientales
  • política del conocimiento
  • práctica social

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geography, Planning and Development
  • Earth-Surface Processes


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