Keynote Speakers

There will be three keynote speakers across the conference. Please see below for details of their abstracts.

Professor Anoop Nayak – (Head of the Geography Department, Newcastle University)

Purging the Nation:  Race, Place and Geographies of Encounter in the Lives of British Bangladeshi Muslim Young Women

(Thursday 17th March, 10.15am-11am, Beehive Lecture Theatre)

anoopThis paper engages with current debates on race, conviviality and the geography of encounters.  I respond to recent concerns that social inequality can be underplayed in this work and that there is a need for more relational, embodied and emotional accounts of belonging.  Through a series of biographical interviews undertaken with British Bangladeshi Muslim young women, I demonstrate how the idea of race is summoned to life in everyday encounters, where it is lived on the body, locality and public arena.  I argue that antagonistic encounters which serve to mark them out as ‘Other’ perform a bigger role in terms of constructing national belonging.  They work as a means of purging the nation, detoxifying it from encroaching multicultural intimacies in the effort to produce what Hage (1998) terms a white nation.  Despite this ritual purging I demonstrate how respondents are implicated in new forms of civic belonging, laying claim to nationhood, locality and rights to the city that subvert and hollow out the fantasy of a white nation.


Dr Erin McClymont (Durham University)

Mud, molecules, and microscopes: perspectives from physical geography

(Friday 18th March, 9am-10am, Beehive Lecture Theatre)

Erin McIn 1972 the crew of the Apollo 17 spacecraft produced an iconic image of Earth, the so-called ‘blue marble’, which illustrated a variety of environments and processes extending from Antarctica to the tropics. In seeking to understand how our natural environment operates, and how human activity interacts with it, the field of physical geography has seen an increasing diversification of methods and approaches. We have adopted and adapted methods from chemistry, biology and physics, and combined them with numerical modelling approaches to understand processes at both the fine scale (e.g. sediment movement, plankton production) and with global impact (e.g. ocean circulation, ice sheet behaviour). My research interests focus on reconstructing past environment and climate changes, largely using marine sediment cores. In this talk I will reflect on my own pathway through our changing discipline, which has taken me both off to sea and into the laboratory. In 2014 I chaired Durham Geography’s successful application for the Gender Equality Charter Mark (GEM), awarded by the Equality Challenge Unit. In this talk I will also reflect on that process and our recommendations for ensuring that diversity and equality are supported within Geography. For Erin’s university profile, please see here.


Professor Peter Hopkins (Newcastle University)

Getting Published in Geography

(Friday 18th March, 2.10pm-3.10pm, Beehive Lecture Theatre)

Peter HopkinsThis presentation discusses publishing in geography with a specific focus on getting published in peer-reviewed international journals. A number of key issues are explored including: selecting what journal to submit your work to (including considerations such as the impact factor of the journal and whether or not it is open access); pitching your article within the discipline or within a specific sub-field; complying with journal requirements about article style, length and referencing; responding to reviewers comments in order to move towards having your work accepted for publication; writing an abstract so as to maximise your readership; and selecting keywords. The politics and ethics of co-authorship are also discussed alongside the importance of contributing to the review process as a peer reviewer.

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