•Clerk of Senate & Vice Principal (Senate Office)
•Professor of Geography (School of Geographical and Earth Sciences)
My current research interests focus on the relationship between the use and management of natural resources and sustainable rural development in low income countries. A particular interest revolves around questions about indigenous environmental knowledge systems, how these are constructed and re-worked, and how these inform a better understanding of sustainable rural development. The work is also sensitive to gender differences in such knowledges and how these relate to gender relations and roles in natural resource management issues. Current work is being undertaken among Bedouin communities in the south-east desert of Egypt and in the semi-arid areas of north-west South Africa.
I also have a research interest in the impacts of structural adjustment policies in Africa on peri-urban development in the major cities. This has involved field research in Tanzania, as well as the development of a rather more theoretical view in collaboration with colleagues in West Africa.
A long-standing interest has been on understanding the nature of agricultural landscapes in low income countries, with a particular emphasis on farmers' decision-making processes in the context of economic, socio-political and, increasingly, environmental circumstances. Not only is this work theoretical in nature, but it is also practical in the sense of contributing to a more general understanding of the success, or otherwise, of rural development strategies. This work has largely been carried out in Tanzania, Egypt and Sudan.
Prof John Briggs
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