PhD Candidate, Geography, Syracuse University                                                                          – Present

Dissertation working title – Malleable Territories: The Politics and Effects of Mining Governance in Post-Soviet Georgia

Committee – Drs. Natalie Koch (Advisor), Tom Perreault, Jamie Winders, Matt Huber

MA, Geography, University of Arizona                                                                                        May 2013

Thesis title – Exceptional Forests: Forest governance, state structure, and territory in the Republic of Georgia

Committee – Drs. Beth Mitchneck (Advisor), Paul Robbins, Tracey Osborne

BA, Geography, Colgate University                                                                                               May 2007

Summa Cum Laude, with Honors and High Distinction, Dean’s List, Film & Media Studies minor

Thesis title – A Drop in the Wave: Individual and Global Perceptions of Transformation in the Post-Socialist Albanian Diaspora



Journal Articles

Swann-Quinn, J. (UNDER REVIEW). “Mining the Homeland: Imagining Resources, Nation, and Territory in Post-Soviet Georgia.” Eurasian Geography and Economics.

Swann-Quinn, J. (UNDER REVIEW). “Ambiguous Dispossessions: In/visibly Violent Borders in the Post-Soviet Georgian Mining Industry.” Territory, Politics, Governance.

Swann-Quinn, J. (UNDER REVIEW). “Tigers, Tunnels, People, Lies: More-Than-Human Government and the Tbilisi Zoo Flood.” Geoforum.

Quinn, J. (2017). “gatekhili Mountains, gatekhili State: Fractured alpine forest governance and post-Soviet development in the Republic of Georgia.” Journal of Alpine Research | Revue de géographie alpine, (105-1).

Book Chapters

Swann-Quinn, J. (In Progress, invited contribution). “Digging Deep: Crossing Scale in Environmental Geopolitics.” In Environmental Geopolitics: A Research Agenda, O’Lear, S. (ed.), Northampton, MA: Edward Elgar Publishing.

Reviews, Reports, and Edited Volumes

Quinn, J. (2017). “Review of Grimm, Dieter, ‘Sovereignty: the origin and future of a political and legal concept’.” H-Citizenship, H-Net Reviews in the Humanities & Social Sciences.

House-Peters, L, S. Kelly-Richards, L. Radonic, J. Minor, and J. Quinn. (2013). Public political ecology field course: Report on a two-day critical theory and mixed methods course. Public Political Ecology Lab,

Owen, G., & J. Quinn. (Eds.). (2013). making sense – a creative exploration of sensing the world. you are here: the journal of creative geography (Vol. 16). Tucson, AZ: University of Arizona. Retrieved from




2017                Field Research Travel Award, Eurasia Specialty Group, Association of American Geographers ($250)

Graduate/Postdoctoral Fellowship, American Research Institute of the South Caucasus ($1500)

2016                Public Humanities Fellowship, New York Council for the Humanities ($8000)

2013                Emmy Award for Outstanding Cinematography – Documentary and Long Form, Academy of Television Arts & Sciences; “Untamed Americas,” National Geographic Television, Associate Producer

Graduate Fellowship, American Research Institute of the South Caucasus ($1500)

2011                Emmy Awards for Outstanding Cinematography – Nature and Outstanding Music & Sound, Academy of Television Arts & Sciences; “Great Migrations,” National Geographic Television, Segment Producer and Associate Producer

2007                National Geographic Society Geography Internship


2018                People’s Choice Award, Syracuse University 3-Minute Thesis Competition

Geography Department Summer Research Fund ($2335)

2017                Geography Department Summer Research Fund ($4000)

2016                Roscoe-Martin Graduate Student Dissertation Research Support, Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs ($1000)

Geography Department Summer Research Fund ($3500)

2015                Syracuse University Outstanding Teaching Assistant Award

Moynihan Institute Center for European Studies Summer Research Grant, Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs ($1500)

2006                Colgate University Social Science Undergraduate Research Grant ($2000)



2018                “Imagining the Mine, Imagining the Homeland: Resource Nationalisms in post-Soviet Georgia.” Paper presented at Association for the Study of Nationalities (ASN) 23rd Annual World Convention, New York, NY. May 4.

“Bordering the Mine: Mining governance, territory, and invisible violence in post-Soviet Georgia.” Paper presented at American Association of Geographers Annual Meeting, New Orleans, LA. April 13.

“Extracting Eurasia: Power, nature, and space in regional context.” Session organizer at American Association of Geographers annual meeting, New Orleans, LA. April 12.

“Securing the Tiger: The Tbilisi Zoo tragedy and the post-Soviet bio-social.” Paper presented at Political Geography Specialty Group AAG Pre-Conference, New Orleans, LA. April 9.

2017                “Geopolitical Ecologies: The politics and effects of mining governance in post-Soviet Georgia.” Invited presentation for Works-in-Progress series hosted by the Caucasus Research Resource Center, American Research Institute of the South Caucasus, and American Councils, Tbilisi, Georgia. July 12.

“Precious Earth: Stories of Mining and Political Change in the Adirondack Mountains.” Public Humanities Fellowship invited presentation, Syracuse University Humanities Center, Syracuse, NY. April 28.

“’The Russians Blew It Up!’: Environmental imaginaries and gold mining after the Rose Revolution.” Paper presented at American Association of Geographers Annual Meeting, Boston, MA. April 8.

2016                “Extractive Territories: Mining and Borders in the Republic of Georgia.” Invited paper presented at ‘Bordered: Conceptualizing Eurasia,’ a conference of the Russian and Eurasian Studies Program, Colgate University, Hamilton, NY. April 8.

“Myth, Image, Territory: Visual Geopolitics in the Republic of Georgia.” Presented at AAG 2016 Annual Meeting, San Francisco, CA. March 30.

2015                “Territorial Claims and Gold Mining in Georgia: A Videographic Geography.” Paper presented at Caucasus Research Resource Center ‘Regional Methods Conference’, Tbilisi, Georgia. June 26.

2014                “Feminist Geopolitics and Political Ecology: Reconsidering Post-Soviet Environmental Governance in the Republic of Georgia.” Paper presented at ‘Political Geography of the Environment’ conference of the International Geographical Union, hosted by the University of Oregon, Eugene, OR. June 20.

“Video Production as Engaged Method in Political Ecology.” Paper presented at American Association of Geographers annual meeting in conjoined session and roundtable ‘Engaged Scholarship in Critical Geography: Theory, Practice and Pedagogy’, Tampa, FL. April 12.

2013                “Yale School of Forestry & Environmental Studies Public Political Ecology Workshop.” Co-led workshop on public political ecology with Dr. Tracey Osborne, New Haven, CT. November 14.

“Forest governance and state structure in the Republic of Georgia.” ARISC Georgia Graduate Fellow Presentation, at the Georgian Geographic Society, Tbilisi, Georgia. 7 August.

“Exceptional Forests: Forest governance and state structure in the Republic of Georgia.” Paper presented at American Association of Geographers annual meeting, Los Angeles, CA. April 11.

“Making Sense – A creative exploration of sensing the world.” Session organizer / discussant at American Association of Geographers annual meeting, Los Angeles, CA. April 12.

2012                “Return to Sender: International Return Migration Between Russia and Georgia.” Presented research from NSF funded research project ‘People, Power, and Conflict in the Eurasian Migration System’ with Dr. Beth Mitchneck at the Kennan Institute at the Wilson Center conference titled Labor Migration in Eurasia: Links to Global Migration and Human Security Trends, Washington, DC. September 21.

“you are here: The Cartographic Turn in Literary Studies.” Invited discussant for panel, American Association of Geographers annual meeting, New York, NY. February 26.

“Media and the Academy Brown Bag.” Invited co-leader on panel for fellow graduate students at the University of Arizona, focus on methods and strategies for using media in geographic research and engaging with media outlets to help with research dissemination, Tucson, AZ. May 2.

2008                “A Drop in the Wave: Individual/Global Perceptions of Transformation in the post-socialist Albanian Diaspora.” Paper presented at American Association of Geographers annual meeting, Boston, MA. April 19.



Syracuse University

AY 2018-2019              Teaching Associate                   Global Community, MAX 132

Summer 2018              Instructor of Record                 Mapping Today: Technology and Spatial

Thinking, GEO 108

AY 2017-2018              Instructor of Record                 World Cultures, GEO 272

AY 2016-2017              Teaching Associate                   Global Community, MAX 132

Spring 2016                  Teaching Assistant                    Mapping 2.0: Understanding Spatial

Thinking, GEO 100

Fall 2015                      Teaching Assistant                    Principles of GIS, GEO 683-383

Fall 2014                      Instructor of Record                 World Cultures, GEO 272

Spring 2014                  Teaching Assistant                    Cities of the World, GEO 200

Fall 2013                      Teaching Assistant                    World Cultures, GEO 272

University of Arizona

Spring 2012                  Lead Teaching Assistant            Human Geography & Global

Systems, GEOG 150

Falls 2011, 2012                       Teaching Assistant                    GIS for Natural and Social

Sciences, GEOG 617-417

Colgate University

2006-2007                   Teaching Assistant                     Introduction to Photography,

ARTS 241



Summers 2013, 2015, 2016, 2017         Doctoral dissertation research

Six months of preliminary and primary research on the Georgian mining sector; performing semi-structured interviews, collaborating with activists, and collecting additional data resources.

Summers 2012, 2013                           MA thesis research

Four months of field research consisting of semi-structured interviews with key players in the Georgian forestry sector.

Fall 2011 – Spring 2013 Research assistant

Working under Dr. Beth Mitchneck at the University of Arizona with research team of four on NSF funded research project “People, Power, and Conflict in the Eurasian Migration System”.

Fall 2011 – present                               Public Political Ecology Lab

Film and edit video interviews with prominent political ecologists, assist with website creation, work with small team under Dr. Tracey Osborne at the University of Arizona.

Aug 2006 – May 2007                           Undergraduate senior research project in Geography

Honors thesis on summer’s work in Albania.  Perform conversational narrative analyses focused on theories of migration, development and cultural identity.

Spring 2007                                          Upstate Institute Research, Colgate University

Established a working database of functional job descriptions at the Madison County Social Services Department for state government research

Summer 2006                                      Shala Valley Project / Balkans Peace Park Project, Albania

Field GIS technician for archeological survey project while also collaboratively assisting with the development of a trans-boundary peace park in Albanian highlands.



  • Association of American Geographers (AAG)
  • Association for the Study of Nationalities (ASN)



  • Demokratizatsiya



AY 2017-2019

Student Board Member, American Association of Geographers Eurasian Specialty Group

AY 2016-2017

Future Professoriate Program Coordinator

Coordinator of the Geography Department’s Future Professoriate Program branch, organizing annual GeoFest event and departmental FPP events for graduate students.

Spring 2015

Graduate Admissions Committee, Geography Department, Syracuse University

Graduate representative to department admissions committee, reviewing applications and contributing to admissions and funding decisions.

Fall 2013-Present

Future Professoriate Program Member

Member of student professional development association within the Syracuse University Geography Department

AY 2012-2013

Editor, you are here: the journal of creative geography

Co-Editor for issue titled “Making Sense – A creative exploration of sensing the world,”

AY 2011-2012

Assistant Editor, you are here: the journal of creative geography

Editorial staff for issue titled “Suspensions: Spaces between illness and health,”



August 2007 – August 2011

National Geographic Television, Natural History Unit – Washington, DC

Various positions including Segment Producer, Associate Producer, Lead Researcher, Media Manager, and Series Coordinator on high profile wildlife documentaries / series

  • Untamed Americas (2012)
    • Winner of 2013 Emmy award for cinematography
    • Best Natural History Film award at 2012 Banff Mountain Film Festival
    • In this television series narrated by Josh Brolin and comprising four, hour-long episodes, we tell stories of wildlife survival and conservation throughout the Americas, from the most remote regions to our urban backyards.
    • For further information, see
  • Great Migrations (2010)
    • Winner of two Emmy awards in 2011 for cinematography and music/sound design
    • The National Geographic Society’s largest project to date.
    • A cross-platform multimedia initiative with world-wide synchronous release, a paired cover story with the National Geographic Magazine, and multiple citizen science events.
    • Working alongside and in consultation with top animal migration scholars (including E.O. Wilson and scientists from the Max Planck Institute, WCS, WWF, and more), narrated by Alec Baldwin, and comprising seven diverse hours of programming, our team tells stories of animal migrations around the planet.
    • For further information, see



Limited working proficiency in Georgian (reading, writing, speaking)



ESRI ArcGIS suite




Apple Final Cut Pro

Adobe Premiere / Photoshop



Dr. Natalie Koch: Associate Professor and Dissertation Advisor

Dr. Jamie Winders: Professor, Department Chair and Committee Member

Dr. Tom Perreault: Professor, Director of Graduate Studies and Committee Member