Permanent Environment and Development Lectureship (research and teaching) at University of Leeds

Are you an interdisciplinary academic with proven abilities to carry out teaching and research in, environment and development? Are you developing an excellent research record and have clear potential for  success in obtaining funding? Are you passionate about delivering an exceptional student experience in a research-intensive Russell Group University?

The Sustainability Research Institute (SRI) in the School of Earth and Environment is looking for an enthusiastic and self-motivated interdisciplinary environmental and social scientist with a focus on environment and development, to join our world-leading team of researchers. Following recent successes in student recruitment and grant income from a range of funders (including UKRI, Horizon Europe and the Global Challenges Research Fund), we are seeking to build our portfolio of excellent teaching and research on pressing environment and development issues. We are specifically looking for someone whose work complements that of our current team, and who can add depth and breadth to this subject specialism and to the interdisciplinary nature of our School.

SRI is an internationally leading centre for research in the environmental social sciences. Our research specialisms include environment and development, environmental policy and economics for sustainability, energy and climate change mitigation, social and political dimensions of sustainability, and business and organisations for sustainable societies. For this position we are seeking applicants working on cross-cutting issues in environment and development in low and middle income countries, such as biodiversity conservation and development, climate resilience pathways to development, environmental risk and disaster management, sustainable food systems, livelihoods and ecosystems services for poverty alleviation, and environmental justice. We are interested in candidates with clear potential for a strong track record of publications and funding applications. Interdisciplinary expertise across the environmental sciences and environmental social sciences and a willingness to work in collaboration with colleagues across the institute and across multiple disciplines is highly desirable.

You will contribute to student education across the sustainability suite of undergraduate and Masters programmes that focus on environment and development and broader sustainability. This will include field courses, research dissertations and placement projects.

To explore the post further or for any queries you may have, please contact: 

Dr Monica Di Gregorio, Co-Director of the Sustainability Research Institute 

Email: m.digregorio@leeds.ac.uk 

For how to apply: https://jobs.leeds.ac.uk/vacancy.aspx?ref=ENVEE1573

Location: Leeds – Main Campus
Faculty/Service: Faculty of Environment
School/Institute: School of Earth and Environment
Category: Academic
Grade: Grade 8
Salary: £42,149 to £50,296 p.a.
Working Time: 100% – We will consider job share / flexible working arrangements
Post Type: Full Time
Contract Type: Ongoing
Release Date: Tuesday 14 June 2022
Closing Date: Tuesday 28 June 2022
Reference: ENVEE1573

The 3rd International Conference on Rural Socio-Economic Transformation

The Department of Communication Sciences and Community Development (SKPM) IPB University are pleased to cordially invite you and POLLEN Network to participate and submit the abstract in The 3rd International Conference on Rural Socio-Economic Transformation (RUSET) which will be held from 10 until 11 August 2022 (hybrid) at the IPB University, Bogor, Indonesia.

The theme of the 2022 conference is “A Transdisciplinary Approach for Promoting Sustainable, Resilience and Just Rural Transitions in the Era of Climate Crisis”.

Deadline of abstract submission: 26th June 2022.

Selected articles will be published in the international proceeding.

Please register and submit your abstract online through http://ruset.skpm.ipb.ac.id

RUSET Organizing Committee
Alfian Helmi

http://bit.ly/alfianhelmi

M.Phil in Environmental History at Trinity College Dublin

This course gives students a firm understanding of the interplay of, and feedbacks between, nature and culture over time. The taught full- or part-time degree has a strong methodological focus, including training in digital humanities technologies, mixed (quantitative-qualitative) methods and innovative assessment design, supplemented by an optional self-financed field trip to Iceland. The purpose of this M.Phil. programme is to train students in methods and themes that are directly relevant to the professional workplace at a time when there is an increasing awareness of the need to include the competencies and insights of the humanities in understanding and addressing environmental issues, not least climate change. Training in critical thinking and mixed methods research skills will open up students’ career perspectives in the public sector, media, private consultancies and NGOs, as well as being an excellent entry point for doctoral studies.

Relevant preparatory courses include NFQ level 8-degree courses in the Humanities (History, Political Science, History of Ideas, Cultural Studies or similar) or the Natural Sciences (Environmental Sciences, Geography, Ecology, Biology or similar). Applicants should normally have at least an upper second class (2.1) Honours Bachelor’s degree or equivalent (for example, GPA of 3.3) in a relevant discipline or specialisation.

Applications for the 2022/23 academic year are open until 30 June 2022.

Course website: https://www.tcd.ie/courses/postgraduate/courses/environmental-history-mphil–pgraddip/

Inquiries: Dr Katja Bruisch (BRUISCHK@tcd.ie)

May 2022 Updates

Dear POLLEN Members and Friends, 

As usual, this month we are delighted to feature the great work of another POLLEN node, Political Ecology Reading Group (PERG) at the University of Sheffield. If your node is keen to share your work in upcoming newsletters, please write to us at politicalecologynetwork@gmail.com.

We are pleased to share some recent publications, CfPs and more from our lively community. We also welcome proposals for blog posts on the POLLEN blog – please contact us at the same email address with any ideas!

Some news: POLLEN is running a fundraiser to support the POLLEN secretariat with its networking and knowledge sharing work. Please donate if you can at this link: https://gofund.me/79f7b227 . This will be our last newsletter for a couple of months as we wind down for the Northern summer – our twitter feed and other web activities will continue as usual.

With regards from your POLLEN Secretariat:
Sango Mahanty | Sarah Milne | Ratchada Arpornsilp

1. Getting to know your fellow POLLEN members

Each monthly newsletter includes a brief introduction to one of our many POLLEN nodes, to build connections across our community. This month we would like to introduce you to our node at the Political Ecology Reading Group (PERG) at the University of Sheffield.

Political Ecology Reading Group (PERG) at the University of Sheffield

Overview

The Political Ecology Reading Group brings together researchers, students and faculty from various departments and research centres across the University of Sheffield and beyond. Our colleagues’ interests span diverse issues, including biodiversity conservation, rural transformations, sustainability, wildlife crime, remote sensing, environmental politics and animal studies. The group convenes every two weeks for seminars, roundtables and other events and it is a safe space where its members present work in progress, engage in passionate discussions of essential political ecology texts, and serves as a platform for interdisciplinary collaborations. We welcome external guest speakers and actively encourage participation from students and early-career researchers.

Node members:

Teresa Lappe-Osthege works as Postdoctoral Research Associate on the Beastly Business Project in the Department of Politics and International Relations at the University of Sheffield. She leads a project that examines the links between corporate businesses and green-collar crime in the illegal songbird trade in Europe, focusing on the Western Balkans and EU Member States (e.g. Cyprus and Italy). Her research is informed by political ecology and green political economy; she is particularly interested in exploring environmental politics and questions of (un)sustainability in post-conflict contexts, having completed her PhD on socio-ecological injustices and inequalities in EU peace-building in Kosovo.

Rosaleen Duffy is a professor in the Department of Politics and International Relations. Her work centres on the global politics of biodiversity conservation, and focuses on global environmental governance, wildlife trafficking, poaching, transfrontier conservation and tourism. Recently, her work has sought to understand the growing links between global security and biodiversity conservation and she just published a book ‘Security and Conservation: The Politics of the Illegal Wildlife Trade (Yale UP). From 2016- 2020 she was Principal Investigator on European Research Council Advanced Investigator Grant for BIOSEC – Biodiversity and Security: Understanding environmental crime, illegal wildlife trade and threat finance. She is currently PI on the ESRC funded Beastly Business project, which examines green crime, political ecology and illegal wildlife trade in European species.

George Iordachescu is a postdoc on the Beastly Business project which he co-designed with other team members. His project combines political ecology and green criminology approaches to investigate the hidden dynamics of brown bear trafficking in Europe. During his PhD he researched the emergence of wilderness protection in Eastern Europe, specifically the clashes between private protected areas and traditional forms of land governance in Romania (Conservation and Society, Open Book Publishers). He was part of the BIOSEC: Biodiversity and Conservation project, where he explored the impact of EU regulations on the illegal logging and timber trade in the Carpathian Mountains (Political Geography, Environment and Society: Arcadia). He is the co-convenor of the Political Ecology Reading Group at the University of Sheffield.

Jocelyne Sze is a PhD candidate in the Ecology and Evolutionary Biology cluster, School of Biosciences. Her research looks at the contributions of Indigenous peoples’ lands to tropical forest conservation, using spatial maps and regression modelling. Her work seeks to support Indigenous and local communities in their land tenure and other rights recognition. She is broadly interested in convivial and decolonial approaches to conservation.

Judith Krauss is a post-doctoral researcher at the University of Sheffield’s Institute for Global Sustainable Development (UK). Judith explored cocoa sustainability and especially its environmental dimension in Nicaragua and Colombia for her PhD (Geoforum, Global Networks, Journal of Political Ecology). During her post-doc, she has worked with great colleagues from diverse geographies and disciplines on convivial conservation (Conservation and Society, Globalizations, JPE), decolonizing the Sustainable Development Goals (Sustainability Science) and livelihoods in Mozambique under Covid (World Development). Judith is passionate about bringing together sustainability and solidarity in research, teaching and public engagement, and serves as an Associate Editor for JPE

2. PUBLICATIONS

Journal articles 

Apostolopoulou, E., Bormpoudakis, D., Chatzipavlidis, A., Cortés Vázquez, J., Florea, I., Gearey, M., Levy, J., Loginova, J., Ordner, J., Partridge, T., Pizarro, A., Rhoades, H., Symons, K., Veríssimo, C., and Wahby, N. 2022. ‘Radical social innovations and the spatialities of grassroots activism: navigating pathways for tackling inequality and reinventing the commons’, Journal of Political Ecology, vol. 29, no. 1, pp. 144–188. <https://doi.org/10.2458/jpe.2292>.

Duffy, R. 2022. ‘Crime, security, and illegal wildlife trade: political ecologies of international conservation’, Global Environmental Politics, vol. 2, no. 2. <https://doi.org/10.1162/glep_a_00645>.

Duffy, R. and Brockington, D. 2022. ‘Political ecology of security: tackling the illegal wildlife trade’, Journal of Political Ecology, vol. 29, no. 1, pp. 21-35. <https://doi.org/10.2458/jpe.2201>.

Dunlap, A. & Laratte, L. 2022. ‘European Green Deal Necropolitics: Degrowth, ‘Green’ Energy Transition & Infrastructural Colonization’, Political Geography, vol. 97, no. 1, pp. 1-15.  <https://doi.org/10.1016/j.polgeo.2022.102640>.

Dunlap, A. 2022. ‘I don’t want your progress, it tries to kill… me!’ Decolonial Encounters and the Anarchist Critique of Civilization’, Globalizations: pp. 1-26. <https://doi.org/10.1080/14747731.2022.2073657>.

Dunlap, A. 2022. ‘Weaponizing people in environmental conflicts: Capturing ‘hearts’, ‘minds’, and manufacturing ‘volunteers’ for extractive development’, Current Sociology, pp. 1-23.  <https://doi.org/10.1177%2F00113921221086828>.

Eversberg, D., and Fritz, M. 2022. ‘Bioeconomy as a societal transformation: Mentalities, conflicts and social practices’, Sustainable Production and Consumption, vol.30, pp. 973-987. <https://doi.org/10.1016/j.spc.2022.04.009>.

Fougères, D., Jones, M., McElwee, P.D., Andrade, A., and Edwards, S.R. 2022. ‘Transformative conservation of ecosystems’, Global Sustainability, vol. 5. <https://doi.org/10.1017/sus.2022.4>.

Fritz, M., Eversberg, D., Pungas, L., and Venghaus, S. 2022. ‘Special issues: Promises of growth and sustainability in the bioeconomy’, Sustainable Production and Consumption, pp. 839-841. <https://doi.org/10.1016/j.spc.2022.01.021>.

Helmcke, C. 2022. ‘Ten recommendations for political ecology case research’, Journal of Political Ecology, vol. 29, no. 1, pp.266–276. <https://doi.org/10.2458/jpe.2842>.

Koot, S., Hebinck, P. and Sullivan, S. 2022. ‘Conservation science and discursive violence: A response to two rejoinders’. Society & Natural Resources. <https://doi.org/10.1080/08941920.2022.2064023>.

Köpke, S. 2022. ‘Interrogating the Links between Climate Change, Food Crises and Social Stability’, Earth, vol. 3, no. 2, pp. 577-589. <https://doi.org/10.3390/earth3020034>.

Leder, S. 2022. ‘Beyond the “Feminisation of Agriculture”: Rural out-migration, changing gender relations and emerging spaces in natural resource management’, Journal of Rural Studies, vol. 91. pp. 157-169. <https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jrurstud.2022.02.009>.

Lunden, A., and Tornel, C. 2022. ‘Re-worlding: Pluriversal politica in the anthropocene’, Nordia Geographical Publications, vol. 51, no. 2. <https://nordia.journal.fi/issue/view/51-2>.

Moreno-Quintero, R., Córdoba, D., and Acevedo, R., 2022. ‘Decolonizing local planning through new social cartography: making Black geographies visible in a plantation context in Colombia’, Third World Thematics: A TWQ Journal. <https://doi.org/10.1080/23802014.2022.2061724>.

Moseley, W.G. and Ouedraogo, M., 2022. ‘When Agronomy Flirts with Markets, Gender and Nutrition: A Political Ecology of the New Green Revolution for Africa and Women’s Food Security in Burkina Faso’, African Studies Review, vol. 65, no. 1, pp. 41-65. <https://doi.org/10.1017/asr.2021.74>.

O’Lear, S., Massé, F., Dickinson, H. and Duffy, R. 2022. ‘Disaster making in the capitalocene’, Global Environmental Politics, pp. 1-10. <https://doi.org/10.1162/glep_a_00655>.

Watkins, C., and Judith, A. C., 2022. ‘Amplifying the Archive: Methodological Plurality and Geographies of the Black Atlantic’, Antipode. <https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/abs/10.1111/anti.12838>.

Books

Bluwstein, J. 2022. Historical Political Ecology of the Tarangire Ecosystem: From Colonial Legacies, to Contested Histories, towards Convivial Conservation?  In Kiffner, C., Bond, M., and Lee, D. (eds), Tarangire: Human-Wildlife Coexistence in a Fragmented Ecosystem. Springer. <https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-030-93604-4_2>.

Chao, S. 2022. In the Shadow of the Palms: More-Than-Human Becomings in West Papua. Duke University Press. <https://dukeupress.edu/in-the-shadow-of-the-palms>. [Special offer: Use coupon codeE22CHAO to save 30% when you order from dukeupress.edu]

Duffy, R. 2022. Security and Conservation: The Politics of the Illegal Wildlife Trade. Yale University Press. <Security and Conservation by Rosaleen Duffy – Yale University Press (yalebooks.co.uk)>

Turner, S., Derks, A. and Rousseau, J-F. 2022 (Eds) Fragrant Frontiers: global spice entanglements in the Sino-Vietnamese Uplands. Copenhagen: NIAS Press. <Open access at this link: https://www.niaspress.dk/wp-content/uploads/2021/11/Turner-OA-edition.pdf>.

3. Calls for paper

3.1 International Conference of the Center for Transdisciplinary Gender Studies (ZtG) at the Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin

Nature-Society Relations and the Global Environmental Crisis –
Thinking on Climate Change and Sustainability from the Fields of Intersectional Theory and Transdisciplinary Gender Studies

From Thursday, 4th May to Saturday, 6th May 2023 at the Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin (Senate Hall)

Human-made climate change has been a subject for science and politics for decades – and is more and more becoming one for the law. Society’s relations to the natural world have changed so much since the start of industrialization that global survival and life on Earth are being called into question. As early as the 1970s, the report for the Club of Rome highlighted the “limits of growth” for humankind. Almost from the outset of such research, the organization of the capitalist economy was identified as driving the ecological crisis. Sociological analyses identified the process of societal modernization as being fundamental to the collapse of our environment. Feminist positions understand the gendered hierarchies underlying the relationship between humans and the more-than-human world as being both the basic cause and the concrete expression of the global environmental crisis. These hierarchies extend to climate policy and law. At the same time, feminist perspectives offer visions of how this relationship can be rethought.

We invite contributions from all fields of study, in particular those that take intersectional approaches and investigate the complexities of nature-society relations and the global environmental crisis. We welcome abstracts for papers of 20 minutes length. Abstracts should not exceed 400 words. Please also include a short biography (50-100 words) with your submission.

Please submit your abstract and short bio by 11 July 2022 in English or German to:  ztg-sekretariat@hu-berlin.de

3.2 International virtual workshop: “Etosha-Kunene Conservation Conversations: 
Knowing, Protecting and Being-with Nature, from Etosha Pan to the Skeleton Coast” 

The Etosha-Kunene Histories research project invites contributions / participations in an online workshop bringing together researchers and conservation practitioners with diverse perspectives on environmental and conservation concerns in north-west Namibia. The workshop aims to provide a platform for a conversation on conservation policies and practices in ‘Etosha-Kunene’, taking historical perspectives and diverse natural and cultural histories into account. We envisage an open access edited volume to be one of the main outcomes of the workshop. 

The workshop will be held on 5-6 July 2022. Deadline for abstracts is 6 June.

For more information, please see the full Call for Papers linked here:https://www.etosha-kunene-histories.net/post/etosha-kunene-conservation-conversations-a-forthcoming-project-workshop   

4. Vacancies

4.1 Postdoc in Sustainable Societal Transformation and Industrial Change at Karlstad University, Sweden

We are hiring a Postdoc to work on the project ‘Changing Places of Work’. Based in the Department of Political, Historical, Religious and Cultural Studies, you will work alongside geographers and historians in Sweden and England to investigate how green (low-carbon) transitions in the steel industry interact with worker- and place-based identities in industrial communities, and how these interactions affect possibilities for successful and just low-carbon transitions. 

This is a full-time position for a period of two years. We particularly welcome applications from candidates with experience in researching processes of societal change, using qualitative fieldwork such as interviews or workshops.  

Enquiries: please contact Dr. Bregje van Veelen, bregje.vanveelen@geo.uu.se, or Dr. Stefan Backius, stefan.backius@kau.se /+ 46 (0)54-7002084.

Applications close 5 June 2022.
More information can be found here: https://kau.varbi.com/en/what:job/jobID:504900/

4.2 Postdoc/Researcher post at SLU, Uppsala, Sweden

Would you like to take part in revealing why practices of natural resource management that threaten biodiversity remain in place despite direction provided by science and policy? We invite applications for a postdoc position linked to a research project on barriers to and motivations for societal transition towards management of natural resources that reverses decline of biodiversity, in particular pollinating insects. The project is a close collaboration between social scientists and ecologists and provides an ideal opportunity to develop your inter- and transdisciplinary research capacity.

The position is based at the Department of Ecology of the Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences in Uppsala (SLU) in Sweden and is in close collaboration with the Department of Urban and Rural Development at SLU. The postdoc will join an interdisciplinary team of social and natural scientists. You will be part of a stimulating, dynamic and collaborative research environment with colleagues who conduct high calibre research in nature conservation, agriculture, wildlife management and forestry.

Application deadline: no later than 10 June 2022.
See more info:
https://www.slu.se/en/about-slu/work-at-slu/jobs-vacancies/?rmpage=job&rmjob=6652&rmlang=UK

4.3 PhD Position, the Department of Geography, University of Bergen

The position is linked to the Department of Geography´s focus area on environmental sustainability and societal change. Research issues within the broad theme of human-environment interactions, global environmental change ecology and consequences for nature protection and food production are welcome. Candidates with theoretical interests in environmental geography fields such as political ecology, sustainable land-use, socio-ecological systems and environmental governance, are very welcome to apply.

The position is for a fixed-term period of 4 years, of which 25% will be dedicated to teaching, supervision and administrative tasks in the Department.

The application and appendices with certified translations into English or a Scandinavian language must be uploaded at Jobbnorge following the link on this page marked “Apply for this job”.

Closing date: 12 August 2022. The application has to be marked: 22/6180
See more info: PhD position (226085) | University of Bergen (jobbnorge.no)
For political ecology-related supervision inquiries, feel free to contact Associate Professor Connor Cavanagh (connor.cavanagh@uib.no).

4.4 Senior Lecturer/Associate Professor – Environmental Policy, Fenner School of Society and Environment, The Australian National University

We are seeking to appoint an outstanding mid-career academic to contribute to the School’s research, education and impact in the field of environment policy. The Senior Lecturer will contribute to curriculum renewal and lead courses relevant to environment policy. This position has been reserved for female identifying candidates, in order to increase employment opportunities for women in a workplace where they continue to be underrepresented.

Further details here: https://fennerschool.anu.edu.au/news-events/news/were-hiring-senior-lecturerassociate-professor-environmental-policy

5. Other news items

EXALT webinar: “Green Extractivism & Violent Conflict”

EXALT hosts a one-day webinar conference “Green Extractivism & Violent Conflict” on 17 June 2022. This exciting conference features three plenary speakers, and 16 exciting papers across 4 panels. There is no fee to participate, but registration is required. Please click here to register for the conference

This webinar conference will explore the multifaceted connections between ‘green extractivism’ and violent conflicts. The speakers will offer fresh empirical and theoretical insights into the ways ‘decarbonization’, ‘green growth’ and climate change mitigation policies shape and are shaped by dynamics of conflict and violence.

If you have any questions about the conference or the EXALT Initiative, please contact us at exalt@helsinki.fi
Follow us on Twitter: @ExaltResearch
Follow us on Facebook: @EXALTglobal

Announcement: POLLEN 2022/3 Pre-conference Asynchronous workshop timetable

Dear Pollinators,

We are pleased to announce the timeline and co-hosting arrangements for the upcoming asynchronous pre-conference workshops. Six of the seven prospective workshop arrangements are in varying stages of finalisation, while the seventh will be announced in due course. Please see the below workshop date, theme and co-host details:

POLLEN 2022/3 Pre-conference Asynchronous workshop timetable.

1.      Early July 2022 – Radical epistemologies and future natures, co-hosted by Amber Huff’s Future Natures Centre at the Institute for Development Studies, Sussex

2.      August 2022 – Political Ecology Across Boundaries, co-hosted by Francis Masse at Northumbria University, Brock Bersaglio at the University of Birmingham and Charis Ennis at the University of Manchester.

3.      Early September – Emotional Political Ecologies – Co-hosted Alice Beban at the PERC (MASSEY University), Sango Mahanty (Australian National University), and Sopheak Chann (Royal University of Phnom Penh).

4.      Late September – Political Ecology and Social Movements – co-hosted by the ‘PE and social movements collective, led by Ana Watson Jimenez at the University of Calgary and the Peruvian Node.

5.      October – Conservation and Agrarian Change – co-hosted by Sam Staddon and the University of Edinburgh node, in collaboration with Sayan Banerjee at the National Institute of Advanced Studies, Bangalore.

6.      November – Blue ecologies – co-hosted by the ‘Blue ecologies collective’, led by Mark Lamont of the Open University and Emily Wiehe from the University of Guelph.

7.      To be announced – Political Ecology, Power and Institutions. Co-hosts TBA

As next steps co-hosts will begin to contact session organisers within their workshops. There will be a process to confirm presenters, accommodate those who submitted individual presentation proposals, and ensure that nobody has been missed out. We will need to make sure there is complete information of each of the sessions In each workshop, and then guidance for session organisers and individual presenters will be shared by the co-hosts.

Ahead of the workshops all asynchronous content will be forwarded to Lisa and Sedicka from African Agenda through the co-hosts, and the workshop webpages will added to the POLLEN 2022/3 website. Workshop details will then be shared, and the focus of the network will be on the session content for viewing and comment through the embedded discussion facility and twitter feeds in the website.

Finally, some collectives are emerging from these workshops, and we hope to build some dialogue on thematic issues towards the in person POLLEN in person conference next year. Specifically we are interested to build learnings on asynchronous conferencing for the network.

Our thanks go to the co-hosts for the enthusiasm with which they have taken these workshops on, and we look forward to engaging with you all in the asynchronous format later this year.

Adrian, Shauna and the Local Organising Committee.

Open call for contributions to an edited volume “Grounding China’s Belt and Road Initiative: The uneven effects of the New Silk Road on place, socionatures and livelihoods from the South, North and beyond”

Co-Editors:

– Elia Apostolopoulou, Cambridge Institute for Sustainability Leadership, University of Cambridge; ICTA – Autonomous University of Barcelona

– Han Cheng, Institute of Geographic Sciences and Natural Resources Research, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing

– Jonathan Silver, Urban Institute, University of Sheffield

– Alan Wiig, Urban Planning and Community Development, University of Massachusetts Boston

The Belt and Road Initiative (BRI), announced in 2013 by the Chinese President Xi Jinping, is the single largest infrastructure project since the Marshall Plan with a scope and scale that has no precedent in modern history. It is estimated to cost up to US$8 trillion, involve 130 countries and an impressive number of corporate and state actors, and impact more than 65% of the world’s population. The BRI brings about novel
combinations of large-scale infrastructure and industrial projects i with major investments in the built environment: from railways, airports, ports, industrial parks, optical fiber networks, and special economic zones (SEZs), to smart cities, greenfield investments, real estate and commercial projects. China has already addressed a significant part of the global infrastructure gapii creating hopes that the BRI may create essential life-supporting infrastructures and services contributing to poverty reductioniii.

However, place-based communities across the globe are increasingly contesting the loss of livelihoods and housing due to the intensification of land grabbing, displacement, and dispossession processes, driving concerns that a new stage of BRI-driven socio-spatial and socio-environmental transformation is emerging which unevenly rescripts political ecologies across multiple scales from the urban to rural and
beyondiv.

Emerging grounded research has offered important insights that point to the unequal geographies of BRI projects and the way places, natures and communities are profoundly affected. This includes empirical reflections on: land speculation and the uneven and gendered vulnerabilities for marginalized groups (e.g. women, migrant laborers) living and working in places where BRI projects are materialisedv ; the exclusion of vulnerable populations from mitigation programmes of infrastructure constructionvi; processes of accumulation, dispossession, and exploitation related to
the privatization of strategic infrastructurevii; the intensification of labour precarity, worsening of working conditions, and violation of worker’s rights; the creation of logistical spacesviii, infrastructural hubs, industrial zones, manufacturing areas and commercial projects that alter the geographies of everyday lives by, for instance, turning cities into industrial enclaves and BRI transit corridors. Despite the importance of these analyses for unraveling emerging inequalities, political ecology and critical geographical analyses focused on a comprehensive analysis of the links between BRI-driven transformation and inequality, including how the latter is differentiated along lines of class, gender and race, and an exploration of how different injustices are linked, are still missing from the literature. Further, the critical examination of the BRI’s trans-continental impact itself pushes scholars of political ecology to think across and between these emergent geographies.

In this volume, we invite interventions that offer grounded, real-world analyses of the effects of BRI projects on places, socionatures and livelihoods following political ecology and geographical approaches and drawing on grounded case studies from any location. Potential contributions may focus on, but are not limited to, the following topics:
 Theorizations of the ways BRI-driven transformation reconfigures patterns of inequality that build on and advance (urban) political ecology debates.
 Theoretical and empirical investigation of the links between different forms of inequality (social, economic, environmental, spatial).
 Analysis of the (uneven) ways BRI-driven transformation impacts on places, socionatures, and urban livelihoods.
 How already occurring policies of gentrification, urban regeneration, and city beautification interact with BRI projects.
 The material impacts of BRI projects to socio-natural metabolisms and the geographies of everyday life.
 How local contestation and social conflicts are co-producing Silk Road urbanizations on the ground and how people’s place-based struggles influence the outcomes of BRI projects.
 Methodologies of depicting spatial transformation (e.g. countermapping, storytelling, performance and arts, visualization techniques) and its
effects on places, livelihoods and the geographies of everyday life.
 Postcolonial, feminist, Indigenous and antiracist approaches to analyses of BRI-driven transformation.
 Countermapping practices, community and grassroots activism.
 Comparative methodologies, including relational analysis and countertopographies, from South, North and beyond.
 How the BRI articulates with urban/rural development, contested landscapes, and animal geographies in domestic China, especially the borderland regions.

We are particularly interested to receive chapters that draw on case studies from Africa and Latin America as well as Europe.

If you are interested in contributing to the edited volume, please send a chapter title and an abstract (max. 250 words) to Elia Apostolopoulou (elia.apostolopoulou@gmail.com), Han Cheng (hc446@cantab.ac.uk) and Alan Wiig (Alan.Wiig@umb.edu) by June 15, 2022.


References
i Blanchard, J-M.F., Flint, C. (2017) The geopolitics of China’s maritime Silk Road initiative. Geopolitics 22, 223-245.
ii Chen, X. (2018) Globalisation redux: Can China’s inside-out strategy catalyze economic development and integration across its Asian borderlands and beyond? Cambridge Journal of Regions, Economy and Society 11(1), 35-58.
iii Liu, W., Dunford, M. (2016) Inclusive globalization: Unpacking China’s Belt and Road Initiative. Area Development and Policy 1, 323–340; Chen, X. (2018) Globalisation redux: can China’s inside-out strategy catalyze economic development and integration across its Asian borderlands and beyond? Cambridge Journal of Regions, Economy and Society 11(1), 35-58.
iv Apostolopoulou, E. (2021) Tracing the links between infrastructure-led development, urban transformation and inequality in China’s Belt and Road Initiative. Antipode 53, 831-858.
v Murton, G., Lord, A. (2020) Trans-Himalayan power corridors: Infrastructural politics and China’s belt and road initiative in Nepal. Political Geography 77, 102100; Beazley, R., Lassoie, J. P. (2017) Himalayan mobilities: An exploration of the impact of expanding rural road networks on social and ecological systems in the Nepalese Himalaya. Springer, New York.
vi Dwyer, M.B. (2020) “They will not automatically benefit”: The politics of infrastructure development in Laos’s Northern Economic Corridor. Political Geography 78, 102118.
vii Neilson, B. (2019) Precarious in Piraeus: on the making of labour insecurity in a port concession. Globalizations 16, 559-574.
viii Gambino, E. (2019) The Georgian logistics revolution: questioning seamlessness across the New Silk Road. Work Organisation, Labour & Globalisation 13(1), 190-206.

Post doctoral research associate position

1 year research position focused on eel trade

Join our team!

This one year Research Associate role arises from the award of a major grant (£859,000) from the UK Economic and Social Research Council to Professor Rosaleen Duffy and Professor Charlotte Burns. The project, BEaStly Business: Examining the Illegal Trade in Bears, Eels and Songbirds, involves working closely with a bigger research team comprised of Professors Duffy and Burns, two other post-doctoral researchers and a project manager. In this post the successful candidate will examine the political ecologies of illegal wildlife trade in European eels, Europe’s largest wildlife crime.

The main objective of this research project is to analyse and explain the drivers of the illegal wildlife trade (IWT) in European species, to shape and transform policies tackling this major threat to biodiversity. IWT is a policy priority for global institutions, donors and NGOs. However, policy and academic foci have tended to fall upon charismatic species in Africa and Asia; illegal trades in European species have been overlooked even though Europe is an important site of production, consumption, and transit. This project directly addresses this gap in knowledge using approaches from political ecology and green criminology.

This research will focus on the political ecologies of green-collar crime in the illegal wildlife trade (IWT) of European eels; the researcher will be engaged in work that results in theoretical development and methodological innovation, and will produce policy-relevant information for key stakeholders (such as Governments, International Organisations and NGOs); the aim is to formulate more effective policies that recognise more fully the roles of legitimate businesses/corporate crime in IWT. The research will involve an in-depth analysis of the dynamics of illegal trade in eels. These themes will be explored by fieldwork in case study countries –  precise locations and timings will be agreed with the successful candidate. The grant provides generous financial support for fieldwork, conference attendance and knowledge exchange activities.

Using the online application system, please submit:

  1. A CV
  2. A covering letter on how you meet the post criteria
  3. A one A4 page research proposal detailing intellectual approach, research methods and empirical focus (where relevant – theoretical proposals are welcome). More information on how to apply for post reference UOS032940 is here

Closing Date is 26 May 2022

Please feel free to contact Rosaleen to discuss the post  r.v.duffy (at) sheffield.ac.uk

Call for application: Weekend course in commons

By the Institute of Commoning

The Institute for Commoning, (InCommons) will be running a taster course in commons and commoning in the south of England from 24th-26th June.

The course is a taster for a programme of study for any adult learner who wants to explore the commons as an alternative and challenge to markets, the capitalist state and colonisation.

Course fee: free of charge, although participants will have to cover their own transport costs to get to the venue, which is on the South Downs just outside Brighton. Twenty (20) places are available for this taster course.

The background of the course is explained below and if you are interested in finding out more, please visit the website here, or fill in an application here. The closing date for applications is midnight UK time on Friday 27th May.

TAKE BACK THE COMMONS

Our planet is getting hotter, people are going hungry in every country in the world, the oceans  are filling with plastics, species are disappearing and war is tearing lives apart. Governments,  corporations, think tankers and “opinion-formers” keep offering us the same old solutions,  packaged up in slightly different ways: “solutions” that keep them in power and in profit.  

It doesn’t have to be like this. People are rediscovering and creating new ways of working  together and remaking the world in ways that challenge the status quo and share power. People  are coming together in different ways to create and sustain commons. In practice, commoning  can be as various as indigenous peoples protecting and sustaining their territories, hackers  creating and curating free software, or the collectives that maintain maker spaces, bike co-ops,  neighbourhood health clinics…  

A CHANCE TO SHARE KNOWLEDGE AND EXPERIENCE 

The Institute for Commoning has brought together world-leading scholars, international activists,  expert organisers and dedicated commoners with the aim of offering a programme of study for  any adult learner who wants to explore the commons as an alternative and challenge to markets,  the capitalist state and colonisation. This programme will be rigorous, exciting and roughly  equivalent to a Masters degree. 

In June 2022, we will be running a weekend residential taster course for anyone who wants to learn  more. 

MASTERS IN COMMONS ADMINISTRATION 

Our programme’s name – Masters in Commons Administration (MCA) – signals its countering of  the ubiquitous and infamous Masters in Business Administration. We reject the MBA’s privileging  of self-interest, competition, and extraction. Instead we focus on collectivity, sustainability and  care. 

The MCA will provide a space, tools and intellectual resources that will enable learners to reflect on  their own practice and experiences, to learn from those of others, and to explore approaches they  may not have previously considered. Although we expect that learners’ experience of the MCA  will inform their subsequent practices – in organising, in activism, at work and so on – the aim of the MCA is broader and richer. It offers students the opportunity to discover and explore the myriad ways, throughout history and pre-history in which human beings have lived, loved, struggled, interacted with each other and with their environments.  

We are offering the MCA outside of the university system. There are great teachers and researchers  in many universities, but the system operates to hinder good pedagogy and scholarship, rarely  to enable it. (Never mind the exorbitant fees it extracts from students.) Modern formal education  appears to be doing its best to extract all the joy, discovery and creativity from learning. These  elements are ignored or even actively suppressed in the interests of meeting the needs of capital  and of producing good workers. We have had enough of this. We think that learning makes life  worth living and can equip people to be curious, to challenge, to take on the power structures that  are ruining so many lives and to simply enjoy exploring ideas, skills and experiences that make  their lives richer. That’s what study should be about and that’s what we intend to offer. 

Teaching will take place in English, through online lectures, workshops, training sessions and  discussion groups as well as, when it is safe and appropriate to do so, residential workshops of  2–5 days each. The MCA will be structured in modules, covering a range of topics, and drawing on  disciplines including, but not limited to: anthropology; critical race theory; ecology; gender studies;  history; organisation studies; political ecology; political economy; science and technology studies;  queer theory. It will make extensive use of case studies. Students will be invited to respond to the  materials and discussions they are offered in writing, speech, video, visual art or another format  appropriate to the theme. Students will also take on their own self-directed research and/or action.  The programme will be part-time and will typically take two years to complete. It will culminate  with an extended project, the student-scholar’s Masterpiece. 

TASTER COURSE – THE DETAILS 

The taster course will be UK-based and residential. It will run from Friday 24th to Sunday 26th  June 2022, in a site on the South Downs just outside Brighton. (The Institute for Commoning has  no site of its own and the residential courses will be offered in a range of venues that we hope will  be conducive to shared learning). There will be 20 places and it will be free of charge, although we  will be asking participants to cover their own travel costs to get to the venue if they are able.  There will be an introductory session online in mid-May, held in the evening UK time, where  potential participants can find out more and ask any questions they might have. If we have more  applicants than we have space for, we will run a selection process, which will involve potential  participants sending us an email, voicemail or video application.  

If you are interested in finding out more and coming along, please send an email to commons.masters@gmail.com, or fill in the application form which you can find at https://www.incommons.info/masters-in-commons-administration/taster-course-application-form or send a message via our website at https://www.incommons.info/.  

SEMINAR

The Rent Relation and Struggles over Distribution in the 21st Century

May 25 2022 8-10:30am EST / 1-3:30pm GMT / 2-4:30pm SAST / 5:30pm-8:00pm IST

School Environment, Education and Development, University of Manchester

Zoom Registration Link: Seminar on Rent

Manuel Aalbers (KU Leuven) 

Callum Ward (London School of Economics)

Preeti Sampat (Ambedkar University Delhi)

Kai Bosworth (Virginia Commonwealth University)

Alex Loftus (King’s College London) 

Erik Swyngedouw (University of Manchester) 

Rent shapes the millennial geography of struggles over land and its more than human affordances. Rent emerges as an attribute of private property entitlements that are pivotal to capital. Appropriated in the moment of distribution, rent is nevertheless fundamental to coordinating the flows of value through the moments of production, circulation and consumption. Assetization of land and its affordances enables the appropriation of rent through wide-ranging investments in real estate, infrastructure, agriculture and extractive industry, in turn impacting access to housing, livelihoods, food security and multispecies life. State agencies across the world are instrumental to facilitating these investments through direct consolidation of land, or through enabling legal frameworks. How do we understand the growing role of rent in millennial capitalist accumulation? Is there a fundamental contradiction between the moment of production and the moment of distribution that the rent relation engenders and must contain for ongoing accumulation? Are rentier appropriations new, or how are they specific to this historical conjuncture of accumulation? How do they unleash speculative spirals, financial crises, ghost cities and failed infrastructure projects across variegated contexts? What is their role in reinforcing inequalities (or enabling contingent solidarities) along race, caste, class, gender, ethnicity and other power differences? What lessons do contemporary struggles against dispossession, over land, housing, livelihoods, food security and multi-species life hold, for understanding the geography of rent? This seminar addresses some preliminary questions around the millennial geography of rent and accumulation.