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School of Geography

Global geographies of knowledge and practice

Our research exploring the geographies of global connections and knowledge-making at a planetary scale addresses the significance of globalising practices and planetary ways of knowing: for imperial political and economic orders historical geographies of development; the production, organisation and translation of scientific knowledge past and present and the political aesthetics of environmental and climatic change.

This includes Miles Ogborn’s research examining the relationships between practice, representation and power through his work on the multiple uses of talk in Anglo-Caribbean slavery; Kerry Holden’s National Science Foundation funded research with computer science communities in East Africa exploring the tensions between the universal language of computer science and the realities of applying algorithmic models in African cities; Simon Reid-Henry’s work on the geographical assumptions of claims to global justice; and Kathryn Yusoff’s retheorising of human subjectivity and human-earth relations through the inhuman and nonorganic dimensions of ‘Geologic Life’ in the Anthropocene; and Catherine Nash’s work on the political implications of genomic and genealogical forms of knowledge and practice for understandings of collective identity and difference.

The interrelated themes of home, identity and relatedness have been addressed in innovative research demonstrating the cultural and political significance of ideas and practices of belonging, origins and movement for urban diasporas (Alison Blunt), transnational experiences of institutional childcare (Claudia Soares, Tim Brown and Alastair Owens), and performances of identity and racialisation (Azeezat Johnson). Understandings of the intimate geographies of home have been examined in AHRC funded research on the home as a site of historical knowledge and practice (Caron Lipman, Catherine Nash, Alison Blunt, Alastair Owens), and by explorations of home-work and home-religion relationships in London from the 17th century to the present day (Alison Blunt, Alastair Owens). Alison Blunt’s research continues to shape the field of home studies, notably by developing ideas about home-city geographies and through her work as founding co-director of the Centre for Studies of Home and her new UKRI/AHRC funded (£500k, with £393k to QMUL) research on understandings and experience of domestic homes in the Covid-19 pandemic. Catherine Nash is extending her work on geographies of related science and culture of ancestry, origins and genealogical relatedness through new work on animal breeds and interspecies kinship.

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