James Hutton Institute Errol Road Dundee Scotland DD2 5DA
I am a social anthropologist, with around 10 years of ethnographic research experience based on fieldwork in Ecuador, Peru and the UK.
I am currently researching the social, material, and political processes implied by moves towards energy decentralisation and the promotion of greater local participation in renewable energy production in Scotland. My ethnographic work follows three wind energy projects at different scales where relations between humans, wind and technology are being actively (re)negotiated in a variety of experimental ways. One fieldwork site is an off-grid west coast peninsula whose electricity supply is gleaned in large part from handcrafted micro-wind turbines designed and deployed in situ; I am also tracking the process of obtaining, installing and integrating into the locality a community-owned wind turbine in north-east Scotland; finally, I am following the unfolding negotiations surrounding the establishment and implementation of a community benefit scheme associated with a windfarm that is set to be amongst Scotland's largest. The research will look at the emergent coalitions of power, technology, expertise and everyday life posed by these socio-technical projects, exploring what kinds of political spaces they open up, and how actors entailed in these projects - including local people, government representatives, planners, and energy consultants - negotiate existing regulatory frameworks in attempting to implement them. This research is supported by a Leverhulme Early Career Fellowship (2015-18), and is also linked to the EU-funded TESS (Towards European Societal Sustainability) project.
Land and Communities
Area of Strategic Research Programme
Further information the Scottish Government's Strategic Research Programme is available
Theme 3: Food, Health and Wellbeing
3.4.4 Local assets, local decisions and community resilience