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Department of Anthropology and Sociology

Ms Ms. Kathrine Ann D. Cagat



Kathrine Cagat
Ms Ms. Kathrine Ann D. Cagat
Email address:
Thesis title:
Testing grounds: intersections in ritual and technology in Ifugao Province
Year of Study:
4th year
Internal Supervisors

PhD Research

In 1995, The Rice Terraces of the Philippine Cordilleras, or the Ifugao Rice Terraces (IRT) as it is more commonly known, became one of the first agricultural landscapes to be inscribed in the UNESCO World Heritage List. In 2001, the fragility of the structures was highlighted when it was added to the World Heritage in Danger List (United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization, 2002). Throughout its inscription on the World Heritage List, and even more so after its identification as an endangered site, maintaining the Ifugao Rice Terraces while not curtailing needed infrastructure, has been a site of tension. As a way to link development projects with heritage objectives, the Ambangal Mini-hydro Plant, which began operation in 2010 at Kiangan, Ifugao, is meant to provide alternative-energy to Ifugao Province, whilst profit from selling the plant’s generated power is invested in a heritage conservation fund.

My research investigates the fraught relationship between conservation and development initiatives that are transpiring in the heritage clusters of Ifugao. The aim is to use these initiatives as an opportunity to better connect anthropological approaches to ritual and technology. I link ritual and technology through the concept of efficacy. I suggest that ritual and technology are linked in the way they allow people to engage with uncertainties, particularly in how uncertainties relate to people’s well-being.

PhD Conferences

  • 2013, Fielding Challenges, Challenging the field: The Methodologies of Mobility, European Association of Social Anthropologists  and Centre on Migration, Policy and Society, Oxford, UK
  • 2013, Roads, Culture and History: Inter-disciplinary Crossroads, School of Oriental and African Studies, London, UK
  • 2012, 3rd International Conference on Heritage and Sustainable Development, Green Lines Institute, Porto, Portugal
  • 2012, International Conference on Tourist and Cultural Itineraries: From Memory to Development, Centre for Tourism and Cultural Change, Université Laval, Quebec, Canada
  • 2012, 4th Mid-year Enrichment Conference for U.S. Scholars and Students in Southeast Asia,
    Fulbright Program Vietnam/ U.S. State Department – Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs, Hanoi, Vietnam
  • 2012, Forum on ‘Globally Important Agricultural Heritage System and the Ifugao Rice Terraces of the Philippines: Current Scenario, Challenges and Future Development’, Ifugao State University, Lamut, Ifugao, Philippines
  • 2010, Lost-in-Space Workshop, University College London, London, UK


  • Research Student Member, SOAS Food Studies Centre
  • Fulbright Scholar, Institute of International Education and Philippine-American Education Foundation
  • Student Researcher, Save the Ifugao Terraces Movement
  • Visiting Researcher, University of the Philippines – Diliman


Southeast Asia, Place/Space, Technology, Development, Ritual, Mobility