Environment and Sustainable Livelihoods

Rural village with one person walking in distance next to a red and blue fence between houses at sunset Lalibela Ethiopia Horn of Africa.The environment is integral to human development yet integrating environmental protection with development aims remains a challenge. 

Our research addresses governance, politics and policy concerns associated with protecting the environment whilst supporting the pursuit of sustainable livelihoods. We conduct research into how governments interact with other actors, including local communities, in the management of biodiversity and natural resources, on issues of food security and food sovereignty, and into the political and policy challenges of responding to air pollution in urban centres. Our research contributes to new understanding of environment and development relationships and informs policy and practice.

Postgraduate Researchers

Research Projects

A systems approach to Air Pollution in East AfricaWilliam Avis, East Africa Research Fund


Governance for Ecosystem Services and Poverty AlleviationFiona Nunan, ESRC/NERC/DFID Ecosystem Services for Poverty Alleviation

Networking for fisheries co-management on Lake Victoria, East AfricaFiona Nunan, Leverhulme Trust

Coastal Ecosystem Services in East AfricaFiona Nunan, ESRC/NERC/DFID Ecosystem Services for Poverty Alleviation

Decolonising human-wildlife conflict prevention in Kenya through oral histories of coexistence; Brock Bersaglio, British Academy/Leverhulme Trust


Avis, W. R. (2016) Urban Governance (Topic Guide), Birmingham, UK: GSDRC, University of Birmingham.

Enns, C. and Bersaglio, B. (2020). On the coloniality of ‘new’ mega-infrastructure projects in East Africa. Antipode, 52(1): 101-123. DOI:10.1002/anti.12582. 

Enns, C., Bersaglio, B., Sneyd, A. (2019). Fixing extraction through conservation: On crises, fixes, and the production of shared value and threat. Environment and Planning E, 2(4): 967-988. DOI: 10.1177/2514848619867615. 

Bersaglio, B. and Cleaver, F. (2018). Green grab by bricolage – the institutional workings of community conservancies in Kenya. Conservation and Society, 16(4):467-480. DOI: 10.4103/cs.cs_16_144.

Margulies, J. and Bersaglio, B. (2018). Furthering post-human political ecologies. Geoforum, 94: 103-106. DOI 10.1016/j.geoforum.2018.03.017.

Nunan, F. (2015) Understanding Poverty and the Environment: Analytical approaches and frameworks, London: Routledge.

Nunan, F. (ed.) (2017) Making Climate Compatible Development Happen, London: Routledge. 

Nunan, F. (2018) Navigating multi-level natural resource governance: an analytical guideNatural Resources Forum, 42(3): 159-171.

Nunan, F. (ed.) (2020) Governing Renewable Natural Resources: theories and frameworks, Abingdon: Routledge.

Nunan, F., Cepić, D., Mbilingi, B., Odongkara, K., Yongo, E., Owili, M., Salehe, M., Mlahagwa, E. and Onyango, P. (2018) Community cohesion: social and economic ties in the personal networks of fisherfolk, Society and Natural Resources, 31(3): 306-319.

Nunan, F., Cepić, D., Yongo, E., Salehe, M., Mbilingi, B., Odongkara K., Onyango, P., Mlahagwa, E. and Owili, M. (2018) Compliance, corruption and co-management: how corruption fuels illegalities and undermines the legitimacy of fisheries co-management. International Journal of the Commons, 12(2): 58–79.

Rogers, P., Nunan, F. and Addisu, A. (2017) Reimagining invasions; the social and cultural impacts of Prosopis on pastoralists in Southern Afar, Pastoralism, 7:22

Thompson, M.S. (2019) Still Searching for (Food) Sovereignty: Why are Radical Discourses only Partially Mobilised in the Anglophone Caribbean? Geoforum, 101: 90-99.