Executive Dean of Faculty of Social Sciences
Neil joined the University of East Anglia in July 2008 and is the Executive Dean of the Faculty of Social Sciences. He began his academic career at University College London, has held chairs at Newcastle and Leeds Universities, and was Director of Newcastle University’s Centre for Rural Economy from 2004 to 2008. He has also worked for periods on secondment to the Cabinet Office and as an advisor to the Economic and Social Research Council.
Neil’s research interests have been in rural economies, agricultural, environmental and regional policy and the governance of environmental controversies. He has recently been working on experimental participatory approaches to flood risk modelling and management.
Selected Recent Projects
Understanding Environmental Knowledge Controversies: The Case of Flooding
(January 2007-June 2010)
An interdisciplinary project, funded under the UK Research Councils’ Rural Economy and Land Use Programme, to examine flood risk and land management, through a new approach to interdisciplinary public science (conducted with Professors Stuart Lane and Sarah Whatmore at the Universities of Durham and Oxford).
This project won an award for the most innovative interdisciplinary methodology from among the 90 projects funded under the Rural Economy and Land Use (RELU) Programme. The project brought together scientists and local residents to examine flood risk problems in Pickering in North Yorkshire and Uckfield in Sussex. The award was presented at the RELU Programme Conference at the Sage, Gateshead on 16th November 2011. A short video about the project can be viewed here.
Structural Change in Agriculture and Rural Livelihoods (SCARLED)
(January 2007-December 2009)
A project, funded by the European Commission Framework VI Programme, to assess agricultural adjustment and rural restructuring among New Member States of the European Union and learn lessons from past accessions, led by the Leibniz Institute of Agricultural Development in Central and Eastern Europe, Germany.
Foresight Analysis of Rural Areas of the EU (FARO-EU)
(April 2007-March 2009)
A project, funded by the European Commission Framework VI Programme, to examine drivers of change in Europe’s rural areas and the potential role of Information and Communication Technologies in future rural development, led by Alterra Research, Netherlands.
Manufacturing Meaning Along the Food Commodity Chain
(March 2003-June 2007)
A study, funded by the ESRC, of the social, cultural and economic significance of food in Britain, employing life-history analysis with producers along the food ‘commodity chain’, supplemented by interviews with policy makers, to assess the extent to which everyday food choices are shaped by wider institutional forces (conducted with Prof Peter Jackson, University of Sheffield). Summary Project Findings available here.
Landström, C., Whatmore, S., Lane, S., Odoni, N., Ward, N. and Bradley, S. (2011) Co-producing flood risk knowledge: redistributing expertise in participatory modelling, Environment and Planning A 43, 1617-33.
Lane, S., Odoni, N., Whatmore, S., Landström, C., Ward, N. and Bradley, S. (2011) Doing flood risk science differently: an experiment in radical scientific method, Transactions of the Institute of British Geographers 36, 15-36.
Donaldson, A., Ward, N. and Bradley, S. (2010) Mess among disciplines: Interdisciplinarity in environmental research, Environment and Planning A 42, 1521-1536.
Ward, N. and Brown, D. (2009) Placing the rural in regional development, Regional Studies 43, 1237-44.
Lowe, P. and Ward, N. (2009) England’s rural futures: a socio-geographical approach to scenarios analysis, Regional Studies 43, 1319-32.
Jackson, P., Ward, N. and Russell, P. (2009) Moral economies of food and geographies of responsibility, Transactions of the Institute of British Geographers 34, 12-24.
Ward, N, Jackson, P, Russell, P and Wilkinson, K (2008) Productivism, post-productivism and European agricultural reform: the case of sugar, Sociologia Ruralis 48, 118-32.
Dwyer, J, Ward, N, Lowe, P and Baldock, D (2007) European rural development under the Common Agricultural Policy’s ‘second pillar’: Institutional conservatism and innovation, Regional Studies 41, 873-87.
Lowe, P and Ward, N (2007) Sustainable rural economies: Some lessons from the English experience, Sustainable Development 15, 307-17.
Ward, N and Lowe, P (2007) Blairite modernisation and countryside policy, The Political Quarterly 78 (3), 412-21.
Ward, N (2006) Socio-economic trends and policies shaping the English Uplands 1940-2020, The International Journal of Biodiversity Science and Management 2(3), 127-131.
Jackson, P, Ward, N and Russell, P (2006) Mobilising the commodity chain concept in the politics of food and farming, Journal of Rural Studies 22, 129-141.
Ward, N, Donaldson, A and Lowe, P (2004) Policy framing and learning the lessons from the UK’s Foot and Mouth Disease crisis, Environment and Planning C: Government and Policy 22, 291-306.
Ward, N and Lowe, P (2004) Europeanising rural development? Implementing the CAP’s second pillar in England, International Planning Studies 9, 121-137.
Ward, N, Lowe, P and Bridges, T (2003) Rural and regional development: the role of the Regional Development Agencies in England, Regional Studies 37, 201-14.
Dorling, D and Ward, N (2003) Social science, public policy and the search for happiness, Environment and Planning A 35, 954-7.
Murdoch, J, Lowe, P, Ward, N and Marsden, T (2003) The Differentiated Countryside, London: Routledge.
Donaldson, A, Lowe, P and Ward, N (2002) Virus - crises - institutional change: The Foot and Mouth actor-network and the governance of rural affairs in the UK, Sociologia Ruralis 42, 201-14.
Ward, N (2002) Representing rurality? New Labour and the electoral geography of rural Britain, Area 34, 171-81.
Lowe, P, Buller, H and Ward, N (2002) Setting the next agenda?: British and French approaches to the second pillar of the Common Agricultural Policy, Journal of Rural Studies 18, 1-17.
Tomaney, J and Ward, N (eds) (2001) A Region in Transition: North East England at the Millennium, Aldershot: Ashgate.
International Policy Forum
Neil attended an International Policy Forum on Regional Development on 17/18 September 2009.
Faculty of Social Sciences
University of East Anglia
Registry and Council House
Norwich Research Park
Norwich, NR4 7JT
Tel: +44 (0) 1603 591450
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