3 PhD Positions, Erasmus University Rotterdam, Netherlands (2019)

Φορέας υλοποίησης Erasmus University Rotterdam, Netherlands

Recent global commodity rushes have profoundly influenced societies across the globe. At least a quarter of a billion hectares of land have been affected, reshaping livelihoods and social and political relations. Contemporary commodity rushes are more complex and far-reaching than those we have seen before, requiring new thinking and practice in order to respond to such unprecedented challenges. This project aims to explore contemporary commodity rushes, centred on the reconfiguration of land use and ownership, examining the implications for five spheres of global social life. We will ask: How do contemporary global commodity rushes reshape the politics of food, climate, labour and citizenship, as well as geopolitics in different contexts? To answer this, we will look into the possible structural, institutional and political shifts caused by commodity rushes within commodity and land regimes and in the five spheres of global social life. Guided by a multi-disciplinary theoretical framework and grounded empirical work, we will engage in practical policy questions aimed at probing the potential for socially just and ecologically sustainable reforms. These reforms will be anchored in the social justice principles of redistribution, recognition and restitution of wealth and power, and the regeneration and recalibration of human–nature relations. We will study global, regional and national dynamics around commodity rushes and regimes, and the five spheres of global social life in Africa (Ethiopia), Asia (Myanmar), and Latin America (Colombia). The role of Chinese investments in the global land rush will be of central interest. This project will change the way we study the recent commodity and land rushes, demonstrating why and how they concern not only the 3.5 billion people who live in rural areas, but the entire world population. Conversely, it will demonstrate why it is not possible to understand what happens in the five spheres of global social life without comprehending how these, separately and together, interact with commodity and land rushes.

Requirements
– Very good MA/MSc in social sciences and professional experience in rural politics and development.
– Conceptual and practical interest in themes of the project, and the ability to articulate how the project themes can be developed into a PhD project.
– Close association with the study region, including knowledge of local languages.
– Commitment to extended periods of fieldwork in remote rural areas.
– Willingness to work as part of a diverse international research team and to contribute to the broader project.

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3 PhD Positions, Erasmus University Rotterdam, Netherlands (2019)

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