The challenges of doing engaged research

By Remy Franklin* How can we make our research relevant while navigating the politics of scientific neutrality? Reflections on the ethical and methodological messiness of practicing engaged geography. It was a morning in early May when I opened my computer to find an email back from the Institutional Review Board providing comments on my application … Continue reading The challenges of doing engaged research

Rosia Montana’s movement for democratic justice

Rosia Montana is a small village in Transylvania, Romania, where, for the last fourteen years, a Canadian corporation has been pushing for the development of what would be the largest open cast cyanide-use gold mine in Europe. In the 1990s, Rosia Montana was declared mono-industrial, not allowing for any other form of business than mining … Continue reading Rosia Montana’s movement for democratic justice

Campania grassroots movements: lessons from 15 years of environmental struggle

Social mobilizations in Campania are changing the political, economic, cultural and ecological landscapes of the region. Their strategies and practices draw a path of resistance and reappropriation that can inspire environmental movements in Italy and elsewhere. The 15 year-long grassroots mobilizations, which emerged in reaction to waste (mis)management and illegal disposal in the Campania region of Southern Italy, represent … Continue reading Campania grassroots movements: lessons from 15 years of environmental struggle

Deconstructing public health: a case from the Mekong Delta

The socio-political nature of disease can be silenced, especially when there is a lack of strong civil society networks and/or scientific data to help reclaim public health. Relevant and effective responses to disease can only emerge with the involvement of people whose health is at stake and through contextualised, historicised and politicised health studies.  * … Continue reading Deconstructing public health: a case from the Mekong Delta

‘Green’ development and democracy? Hydropower in Northeast India

Hydropower projects, disguised and depoliticized as green and sustainable, are being imposed as a development solution across the Himalayas. The dam conflicts presented here illustrate how civil society groups have become political actors, rising up against assaults on democracy.* Source: NHPC. Climate change has set an imperative for economies around the world to revise their … Continue reading ‘Green’ development and democracy? Hydropower in Northeast India

Drivers of illegal waste disposal: the case of Campania, Italy

Illegal economic practices are often labeled as aberrations of the market logic, but few realize their role in sustaining capitalist accumulation and power hierarchies. Uncovering the drivers of illegal waste disposal in Campania demonstrates that illicit and legal economies are often intertwined and mutually beneficial.* Prologue The Pellini Group is a family-run company managed by the three Pellini brothers, … Continue reading Drivers of illegal waste disposal: the case of Campania, Italy

Mining, water appropriation and latent conflicts

What if environmental conflicts do not manifest themselves? The Cobre Las Cruces mining company has managed to access and control common water resources thanks to a top-down, technocratic version of science, which silences social conflict.* The empirical case of the use of water resources in the Cobre Las Cruces mining project (CLC) demonstrates the importance … Continue reading Mining, water appropriation and latent conflicts

Struggling for land and water: resistances to tree plantations in Southern Chile

Different strategies to contest forestry extractivism in Chile show the complexity of these conflicts, with an overlap of present and historical political issues at different levels.* Tree plantations: old and new forms of dispossession Tree plantations are monocultures of a single tree species, typically fast growing species such as eucalypts, poplars, acacias and pines, designed to supply external markets … Continue reading Struggling for land and water: resistances to tree plantations in Southern Chile

Co-producing political responses to ‘swiftlet farming’ in George Town, Malaysia

Through the analysis-using several ethnographic methods- of conflicts around 'swiftlet farming' in George Town, Malaysia, Creighton Connolly encourages the formation of stronger linkages between academics, urban policy makers, and civil society organisations for better understanding environmental conflicts.* Edible-nest swiftlets are a small species of bird (Aerodramus fuciphagus), native to Southeast Asia, which make edible nests entirely … Continue reading Co-producing political responses to ‘swiftlet farming’ in George Town, Malaysia

Using art to study and communicate socio-environmental change in areas of land grabbing

By Emma Li Johansson* Art in research is a powerful tool to evoke feelings and actions beyond academia. This researcher set out to see what is possible when mixing research with artistic ways of expression. A picture says more than a thousand words, they say. Which is why art is a good way to inform … Continue reading Using art to study and communicate socio-environmental change in areas of land grabbing