Political Ecology Network

Leave a comment

POLLEN18 Registration Deadline Fast Approaching!

Dear All,

This is just a friendly reminder that the registration deadline of Thursday, 01 March for the POLLEN18 conference is fast approaching!

Registration can be completed at the following link: https://webshop.hioa.no/produkt/pollen18-conference/

Please note that we will no longer be able to schedule paper proposals from participants who have not registered for the conference on or before the 01 March deadline.

Tickets for the conference dinner at Kulturhuset on 20 June 2018 are also selling rapidly, and can be booked at the above website – register soon to ensure that you can join us!

Otherwise, if you experience difficulties with registration or have other questions about POLLEN18, inquires can be directed to the conference email address: politicalecology18@gmail.com. We look forward to welcoming you in Oslo!

All the very best,
The POLLEN18 Organizing Committee

Free online course on Environmental Justice starting in March

EJ MOOC publicity photo small

Enrolment is now open for the Environmental Justice MOOC (massive open online course) run by the University of East Anglia and Future Learn. The course starts on 12th March and runs for 5 weeks.

Why join the course?

The world faces challenging environmental problems. This free online course will help you understand how injustice is a common feature of many environmental problems, including deforestation, biodiversity loss, climate change and water management. Sustainable environmental management requires attention to justice – that we need to strike the right balance between the needs, interests, rights and aspirations of various stakeholders today, and those of both nature and future generations.

Continue reading

Leave a comment

POLLEN18 Bursaries: Apply Now!

The POLLEN18 organizing committee is pleased to announce the availability of ten bursaries to facilitate conference attendance. These include:

  1. Five grants of up to 10,000 Norwegian Kroner (NOK) each for travel and accommodation expenses, plus a waiver of the POLLEN18 conference fee.
  2. Five additional waivers of the conference fee.

We invite students, unwaged or precariously-employed scholars, and participants based in ‘developing’ or middle and low-income countries to apply for these bursaries. To be eligible, applicants must also be presenting their work at the conference. To apply, please submit the following documents:

  1.  A brief letter of motivation (max. 500 words, with contact and affiliation details)
  2. A CV (max. 2 pages)

Kindly send the above to the organizing committee at politicalecology18@gmail.com with a copy to Heidi.Bekjorden@hioa.no on or before Tuesday, 20 February 2018.


Leave a comment

CFP: Examining inequalities in contexts of environmental degradation

Call for Papers

Development Studies Association Annual Conference University of Manchester, 27-29th June 2018


Convenors: Clare Barnes and Sam Staddon (University of Edinburgh) and Paola Ballon (University of Oxford) Chair: Fiona Nunan (University of Birmingham)

Processes of environmental degradation in the Global South, such as land use change in forests or coastal ecosystems, overfishing, groundwater exploitation or climate change, can create or reinforce social, cultural, political and/or economic inequalities. Likewise, multifaceted inequalities in societies from individual or group levels up to national scales, can influence the form and outcomes of environmental degradation. The relationship between inequalities and environmental degradation can be mediated by institutions; policies; macro, meso and micro social and political processes; the uneven presence of state and non-state actors etc. It becomes especially important to analyse these complex interwoven processes in the context of the UN Sustainable Development Goals, as policies and practices could demand trade-offs between reducing inequality and halting degradation, or indeed create win-wins. This panel welcomes papers which examine aspects of the complex interrelationships between multifaceted inequalities, both vertical and horizontal or group-based, and environmental degradation and/or access to natural resources, or governance initiatives and practices which directly or indirectly affect such relationships. Various frameworks could be employed such as environmental justice, law, political ecology, political economy, economics or institutional analyses. Group-based inequalities could be assessed among ethnic, racial, and communal groups in an integral effort to understand its linkages, causes and consequences with environmental degradation. The panel will create a space for dialogue between scholars and practitioners exploring these questions using different frameworks and with diverging theoretical or empirical foci.

The panel is organised by the DSA Environment, Natural Resources and Climate Change Study Group.


To propose a paper for this session, please do so through the DSA online system (click on the ‘Propose paper’ tab near the bottom of the page) Please note, proposals CANNOT be submitted by email to the convenors:


Proposals should contain your paper title, an abstract of up to 300 words, and your name(s), institution(s) and email address(es). We looking forward to hearing from you!


The deadline for submissions is the 5th March 2018

Leave a comment

POLLEN monthly news round-up


A pdf version of the newsletter is available here.

Dear POLLEN members and friends (with apologies for X-posting),

Greetings and welcome to a bumper newsletter with two months’ worth of publications, blog posts and opportunities!

Our most exciting news is that registration for POLLEN18 is now open for people who have submitted paper and panel proposals. Please register here before 1st March. Read about our keynote speakers here or read Dan Brockington’s post on opportunities to be a conference ‘mole’!

Blog posts

Tourism, labour and the rhino poaching crisis in South Africa by Stasja Koot

Giorgos Kallis has recently launched a blog where he shares some of his accumulated insights from writing and publishing journal papers. You can find the three first posts here.

Katharine Howell is trying out ways of communicating geographical ideas and political ecology research using comics. Feedback and ideas welcome!

From our friends at Entitle:

Capitalist Floods in the Pacific Islands by Fabio Papetti

From a New Deal to Projekt Deal: Time for solidarity with German scholars by Bram Büscher and Joel Wainwright

Introducing Ecopsychoanalysis: Mind, Politics and Ecology by Ed Thornton

A conversation about Gramsci on the Nile by Emanuele Fantini, Filippo Menga and Ana Elisa Cascão

In memory of James O’Connor (1930-2017) – I part by Entitle_Collective

The screaming silence of sexual violence in academia: A call for reporting and action by Panirani

In memory of James O’Connor (1930-2017) – II part by Entitle_Collective

The planned development of Hellenikon: A sacrifice that needs to be contested by Entitle_Collective

Disrupted Landscapes: State, Peasants and the Politics of Land in Postsocialist Romania by Marco Armiero

Nature 3.0: Will Blockchain Technology and Cryptocurrencies Save the Planet? By Sian Sullivan

Resources and training

‘Rural transformations in the 21st century‘: A PhD course organized by the Centre for Development and the Environment, University of Oslo.

Environmental Justice MOOC: Enrolment is now open for this free online course) run by the University of East Anglia and Future Learn. The course starts on 12th March, runs for 5 weeks and expect about 4 hours of study each week. It will help you understand how injustice is a common feature of many environmental problems, and that sustainable environmental management requires attention to justice. You’ll learn with the University of East Anglia’s Global Environmental Justice Group – an interdisciplinary mix of scholars interested in social justice and environmental change. You’ll also hear from activists around the world, and you’ll share your own experiences with other learners from many different backgrounds. Register today! 

Calls for papers

RGS-IBG Annual International Conference, Cardiff (UK), 28-31 August 2018
Regional geographies of electricity: interrogating state territorialities from the periphery

Re-engaging the global commons

Fourth Annual FLARE Network Meeting, October 17-20, 2018 University of Copenhagen, Denmark

Call for abstracts

Timber Legality symposium


Aguilar-Støen, M. (2018) Social forestry movements and science-policy networks: The politics of the forestry incentives program in Guatemala.’ Geoforum. 90: 20-26.

Castellanos-Navarrete, A., and Jansen, K, 2018. Is oil palm expansion a challenge to agroecology? Smallholders practising industrial farming in Mexico. Journal of Agrarian Change. http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/joac.12195/full

Dunlap, Alexander (2017). Wind Energy: Toward a ¨Sustainable Violence¨ in Oaxaca, NACLA The Report on the Americas, 49(4): 483-488

Dunlap, Alexander (2017). ‘Book Review: State Crime on the Margins of Empire: Rio Tinto, the War on Bougainville and Resistance to Mining by Kristian Lasslett.’ Interface: a journal for and about social movements, 9(2): 389-444

González-Hidalgo, M. (2018). The politics of reflexivity: Subjectivities, activism, environmental conflict and Gestalt Therapy in southern Chiapas. Emotios, Space and Society

Görg, C., Brand, U., Haberl, H., Hummel, D., Jahn, T., Liehr, S., (2017). Challenges for Social-Ecological Transformations: Contributions from Social and Political Ecology. Sustainability 9. https://doi.org/10.3390/su9071045

Jostein, J. (2018) ‘Towards a Gramscian food regime analysis of India’s agrarian crisis: Counter-movements, petrofarming and Cheap Nature.’ Geoforum. 90: 1-10.

Karlsson L., Naess L.O., Nightingale A.J., Thompson J. (2018) ‘Triple wins’ or ‘triple faults’? Analysing the equity implications of policy discourses on climate-smart agriculture (CSA)” for a special forum section on The Global Political Economy of Climate Change, Agriculture and Food Systems, Journal of Peasant Studies. 1, 1-25.

Nagoda, S. and Nightingale, A.J. (2017)“Social and Power Relations in Participatory Climate Change Adaptation Planning: (re)producing vulnerability in food security and adaptation programs in Nepal,” World Development. 100, 85-93

Neimark, B.D. and Healy, T.M. (2018). Small-scale commodity frontiers: The bioeconomy value chain of castor oil in Madagascar. Journal of Agrarian Change. DOI: 10.1111/joac.12231

Nightingale, A.J., Bhatterai, A., Ojha, H.R., Sigdel, T. and Rankin, K. (2018) “Fragmented public authority and state un/making in the ‘new’ Republic of Nepal,” article for a special issue on the State in South Asia in Modern Asian Studies. 52(3) in press.

Nightingale, A.J. (2017) “Power and Politics in Climate Change Adaptation Efforts: struggles over authority and recognition in the context of political instability,” Geoforum. 84, 11-20.

Ouma, S., Johnson, L. and Bigger, P. (2018) ‘Rethinking the Financialization of ‘Nature’.’ Environment and Planning A. http://journals.sagepub.com/doi/full/10.1177/0308518X18755748 …

Velasco Santos, P. (2017). Ríos de contradicción: contaminación, ecología política y sujetos rurales en Natívitas, Tlaxcala. Instituto de Investigaciones Antropológicas (IIA) de la Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México (UNAM). http://www.iia.unam.mx/publicaciones/detalles.php?clave=498

Widengård, M. and Nightingale, A.J. (2018) “Seeing like a standard: EU, sustainable biofuels, and land use change in Africa,” ACME: an International E-Journal for Critical Geographers. In-press.

Zinzani, A. 2018. International Development Policies and Coastalscape Metabolism; The Case of the Mekong Delta, Vietnam,  Social Sciences – Geography and Sustainability Studies, 7 (2), 1-19. doi:10.3390/socsci7020019


PhD Opportunities: 15 Marie-Sklodowka-Curie PhD positions in Feminist Political Ecology

PhD Opportunity: Subterranean Spaces; Critical approaches to Underground Urban Development

PhD opportunity: What’s all the Buzz? Managing competing interests in developing Western Australia’s beekeeping industry

Job Opportunity: Research fellow in mining governance, University of Melbourne

Job Opportunity: Senior Researcher / Researcher in environmental economics

Job Opportunity: Assistant Professor in Environmental Social Sciences, Davidson College


News from colleagues at the Political Ecology Research Centre, Massey University, New Zealand includes an upcoming visit from Bram Buscher and Rob Fletcher, an open access book publishing contract with Athabasca University Press for Plastic Legacies: Persistence, Pollution, and Politics, and news of their upcoming conference, Feral.

New nodes

A warm welcome to our new nodes:

Vijay Kolinjivadi, Université du Québec en Outaoutais

Ilenia Iengo, KTH Environmental Humanities Lab, Stockholm


Best wishes until next time,

Katharine Howell, Ben Neimark, John Childs, Simon Batterbury, Patrick Bigger, James Fraser & Giovanni Bettini

POLLEN secretariat, Lancaster University



1 Comment

POLLEN18 Keynote Plenaries

We are very pleased to announce the following three keynote plenary sessions for POLLEN18!

Keynote Plenary I

Headshot – West:AiniPaige West is The Claire Tow Professor of Anthropology at Barnard College and Columbia University. Her broad scholarly interest is the relationship between societies and their environments. She has written about the linkages between environmental conservation and international development, the material and symbolic ways in which the natural world is understood and produced, the aesthetics and poetics of human social relations with nature, and the creation of commodities and practices of consumption. Since the mid 1990s she has worked with indigenous people in Papua New Guinea. She is the author of three books and the editor of five more. The tentative theme of Paige’s POLLEN18 keynote lecture is Critical Approaches to Dispossession in the Melanesian Pacific: Conservation, Voice, and Collaboration. The lecture draws on a paper co-authored with John Aini (Founder and Director, Ailan Awareness, Papua New Guinea).

Headshots – RaiDiscussant: Nitin Rai is a Fellow at the Ashoka Trust for Research in Ecology and the Environment (ATREE), India. He uses a political ecology approach to understand the implications of state conservation policy and practice for people and landscapes. Nitin conducts most of his fieldwork in the Biligiri Rangaswamy Temple Tiger Reserve where he has explored issues ranging from historical patterns of forest use, cultural relationship to landscape, and rights-based conservation. More recently he has been analyzing market-based interventions such as eco-tourism and corporate investments in biodiversity conservation. Nitin is an editor of the journal Conservation and Society.

Keynote Plenary II

Headshot – KothariAshish Kothari is a Founder-member of the Indian environmental group Kalpavriksh. Ashish has taught at the Indian Institute of Public Administration, coordinated India’s National Biodiversity Strategy and Action Plan process, served on Greenpeace International and India Boards, helped initiate the global ICCA Consortium, and chaired an IUCN network dealing with protected areas and communities. Ashish has (co)authored or (co)edited over 30 books, and helps coordinate the Vikalp Sangam and Radical Ecological Democracy processes in search of alternative well-being pathways to globalized development. The tentative theme of Ashish’s POLLEN18 keynote lecture is Radical Ecological Democracy: Towards Transformative Alternatives to Development.

Headshot – RobbinsDiscussant: Paul Robbins is the director of the Nelson Institute for Environmental Studies at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, where he guides the institute in addressing rapid global environmental change. Robbins has years of experience as a researcher and educator, specializing in human interactions with nature and the politics of natural resource management. His research addresses questions spanning conservation conflicts, urban ecology, and environment and health interactions. He has done extensive fieldwork in rural India, led national studies of consumer chemical risk behaviors in America, and studied the complexities of elk management policy on the settled fringes of Yellowstone Park. He holds a doctorate in geography from Clark University. He is author of “Political Ecology: A Critical Introduction” and the award-winning book, “Lawn People”. Paul was raised in Denver, Colorado.

Keynote Plenary III

Headshot – Murray LiTania Murray Li is Professor of Anthropology at the University of Toronto, where she holds the Canada Research Chair in the Political Economy and Culture of Asia. Her publications include Land’s End: Capitalist Relations on an Indigenous Frontier (Duke University Press, 2014), Powers of Exclusion: Land Dilemmas in Southeast Asia (with Derek Hall and Philip Hirsch, NUS Press, 2011), The Will to Improve: Governmentality, Development, and the Practice of Politics (Duke University Press, 2007) and many articles on land, labour, class, capitalism, development, resources and indigeneity with a particular focus on Indonesia. Her current book project Plantation Life is an ethnography of an oil palm zone.


Headshot -- BuscherDiscussant: Bram Büscher is Professor and Chair of the Sociology of Development and Change group at Wageningen University, The Netherlands, and holds visiting positions at the University of Johannesburg and Stellenbosch University. Bram has published over 70 articles in peer-reviewed journals and edited volumes and is the author of ‘Transforming the Frontier. Peace Parks and the Politics of Neoliberal Conservation in Southern Africa’ (Duke University Press, 2013). Bram is one of the senior editors of the open-access journal Conservation & Society (www.conservationandsociety.org) and is currently finalizing a book manuscript entitled ‘Sharing Nature? Conserving Biodiversity between Platforms, Post-truth and Power.



Leave a comment

Call for applications: 15 fully funded PhD studentships in Feminist Political Ecology

***Shared on behalf of Becky Elmhirst***

On behalf of the WEGO-ITN, we are pleased to announce the recruitment of 15 Marie Sklodowska-Curie (MSCA) PhD positions (Early Stage Researchers).

To download the full call for applications, go to this link: https://www.iss.nl/en/news/15-marie-sklodowska-curie-phd-positions

WEGO-ITN’s consortium is made up of scholar-activists working on feminist political ecology from ten institutions in five European Union countries: Germany, Italy, Sweden, The Netherlands and the United Kingdom and eight institutions from six countries for training and secondments: Australia, India, Indonesia, Italy, Uruguay and USA.

The PhDs will be hosted at the beneficiary institutions of the WEGO-ITN: Freie Universität Berlin (FUB); Humboldt University Berlin (HUB); Institute of Development Studies (IDS) at Sussex University; Pangea Foundation (PF); Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences (SLU); The International Institute of Social Studies (ISS) of Erasmus University Rotterdam; University of Brighton (UofB); University of Passau (UPAS); IHE Institute for Water Education, Delft (IHE) and Wageningen University & Research (WUR).

Please note this is a general call for the whole ITN WEGO. More specific requirements for individual selection criteria and information on financial support and remuneration will be available at the shortlisted stage.

The positions will be open for applications from 29 January 2018.
The deadline for applications is 12 noon, 1 March 2018.

Corresponding e-mail address for applicants: itnwego@gmail.com

WEGO-ITN Website: https://www.iss.nl/en/research-15/research-programmes/projects/civil-society-and-market/research-projects/well-being