Committee 2017-2018

A new committee is elected on an annual basis at our PGF Midterm Conference, before taking office after the AGM at the Annual International Conference. This year’s committee is made up of a vibrant group, representing a wide cross section of the discipline.

Chairperson – Dan Casey, University of Sheffield

Dan is a third year PhD student in the Department of Geography at the University of Sheffield. His research is funded by the University of Sheffield and Grantham Centre for Sustainable Futures and focuses upon UK farming. His project evaluates the way Public-Private Partnerships (PPPs), such as Local Nature Partnerships (LNPs), work in farming to deliver a wide range of ecosystem services. Alongside Dan’s research he helps with a wide range of undergraduate and masters teaching in the department on environmental and international development topics. Outside of his studies Dan enjoys travelling and cooking.


Secretary – Adam Badger, Royal Holloway

Beyond my secretarial duties I’m a second year PhD student at based in the Geography and Management departments. My work broadly investigates the processes of surveillance, display, and (de-)territorialisation in the ‘digital workplace’ and will be looking to the ways in which relational ontologies may reveal more about the iterative processes of work shaping technology, and technology shaping work.

Feel free to get in contact:

Twitter_logo_blue @AdamBadger1

Mid-term Conference Co-ordinator – Ed Brookes, Royal Holloway University of London

I am a first year PhD student at Royal Holloway University of London. My research explores the social and urban geographies of Robin Hood Gardens housing estate in East London. More specifically it focuses on how the present-day site, and its on-going political contestation, is continually ‘produced’ by historical and layered assemblages of materiality, culture and urban politics.

In terms of my wider research foci I am particularly interested in the geographies of home, geographies of architecture and concepts of liminality. Outside academia, I fill my time with manufacturing unhealthy baked goods and consuming copious amounts of dystopian science fiction.

Twitter_logo_blue @EdBrookesRHUL

Physical Geography Officer – James Brooks, University of Manchester

James is a third year PhD student in the Centre of Atmospheric Science at the University of Manchester, funded through NERC. His PhD project concerns characterising aerosol (very small particles suspended in the air) chemical composition, attempting to understand better how aerosol behaves around the world. He has been lucky enough to take part in two field campaigns as part of his PhD. The first was an aircraft study over India during the 2016 summer monsoon season, and the second was on board a research vessel around the Arabian Peninsula and Middle East. On these field campaigns, James operated several scientific instruments that collect data, which will end up improving our knowledge on climate change and air pollution. Alongside his research, James is a Homeless Outreach Project leader in Manchester through the Students Union, and also helps with a range of teaching in the department.

Twitter_logo_blue @BlackCarbonMan

Annual Conference Session Co-ordinator – Jo Hickman Dunne, Loughborough University

I’m a final year Geography PhD student. My research focuses on how space is constructed and used in outdoor education, and how different groups of young people relate to and experience these spaces. I’ve been working with the Outward Bound Trust, and consider myself very lucky to have spent a month climbing, kayaking and camping… all in the name of data collection! Outside my research, I love running, walking and being outdoors. Unfortunately, I’m going to have to spend a bit more time at my desk if I want to get my thesis written!


Mid-term Conference Co-ordinator – Katy Lawn, Royal Holloway University of London

Katy is currently beginning the second year of her ESRC funded PhD, which centres on the cultures and ideologies around working life and the geographies of boredom. She also has an interest in art and creative methods, so when she’s not working on her PhD, you can find her hanging around in art galleries or journalling.



Twitter_logo_blue @LawnKaty

Website Officer – Chris Martin, University of Leicester 

Chris is a PhD student and in the middle of fieldwork. He is researching how children and young people interact with mobile digital technology in their outdoor play. He is looking at how combinations of environment and mobile technology assemble to afford playful moments in older children’s lives, and how these ‘matter’. He is particularly interested in de-centring the playing child and reconstructing them in a complex assemblage to present an alternative perspective to biosocial dualisms, offering the qualities of non-human actants up to increased scrutiny. He studies part-time and is also an adventure playground worker, youth worker, sound engineer and post-punk musician. In his spare time (!!) he is a martial artist,  loves cooking spicy food and travelling.


Social media Officer -Carl Olsson, Lund University, Sweden

When not tweeting, I am working towards finishing my MSc in human geography, however, I am presently in Tokyo on exchange to Waseda University, where I will stay until summer. My academic interests are, broadly, in the fields of new materialist thought, temporality and how places stay intact. I am working on two projects, one of which concerns thinking place with Henri Lefebvre’s rhythmanalytical project and the other one is about fear and interstitial spaces in H.P. Lovecraft’s fiction.



Twitter_logo_blue @carlolssongeo

Annual Conference Session Co-ordinator – Peny (Panagiota) Sotiropoulou, Loughborough University

Peny is a third year Human Geography PhD student, and her research examines Greek pre-service teachers’ multicultural competence. Inspired by sociocultural theories, according to which learning is understood as a processes taking place on multiple timescales and spatial locations and is differentially experienced based on individuals’ subjectivities, this study aims at empirically consolidating qualitative findings, according to which the concept of ‘accumulated experiences’, understood as the cumulative impact of prior and present experiences and dispositions, across formal and informal educational spaces, seems to be more suitable in explaining the development of multicultural competence. Peny’s interest include volleyball and traveling.



Masters Representative – Alice Watson,  University of Oxford

Alice is currently studying for an MSc in Migration Studies. This follows her undergraduate degree in Geography at the University of St Andrews. Interest in migration, imaginative geographies, and social constructions of difference influenced her choice of dissertation topic on media representations of the ‘European refugee crisis’ in BBC Radio 4’s From Our Own Correspondent between 2014-2016. Alice is drawn to radio as a familiar, pervasive and ‘visual’ medium, and understudied space of knowledge in Geography. More broadly, she is interested in bordering, biopolitics, and the discursive construction of identities and geographical imaginaries. She hopes to explore the intersection between border securitisation and humanitarianism, the gendered construction of refugee movement and stasis in the media and/or policy, and to situate contemporary migration within the context of the colonial past and postcolonial present. Alice loves to play golf, sing, and practise yoga!


PGF ACTS Co-ordinator – Martin Watts, University of Southampton

Hello,  I’m currently undertaking an MSc in Social Research Methods at the as part of the South Coast Doctoral Training Programme in preparation for my PhD, which explores how climate change impacts agroforests and the associated livelihoods in Tanzania, and how they can adapt. I am interdisciplinary between Geography and Biological Sciences and will be utilising an array of methodological approaches ranging from semi-structured interviewing, to farmland soil sampling and yield assessments. Coming from a Physical Geography background, I have interests in Renewable Energy, Reconstructing Past Climates and River Geomorphology. However, following my other MSc I have developed deeper interests in International Development, Food Security in Developing Countries and Climate Change Adaptation in East Africa. Outside academia I enjoy badminton, WWE and cooking (mainly Italian). I am looking forward to getting stuck in here at the RGS PGF to go alongside my studies.


Events Facilitator – Nina Willment, Royal Holloway University of London

Hi! I’m a first year PhD student in Geography.  My broader research interests lie around the politics of creative labour and particularly the politics of forms of aesthetic and affective labour. My MA dissertation focused on the aesthetic labour of grime DJs in London. Within my PhD, I’m hoping to investigate the politics of creative labour through new empirical foci, incorporating a diverse range of workers and workspaces beyond grime DJs into my research. In my spare time, I absolutely love travelling, anything to do with dachshunds and upcycling furniture!