Sustainability database


Prof Noel Castree

Professor of Geography

My principal research interest is the political economy of environmental change.

Drawing upon Marxist theory, I've made some very modest contributions to ongoing debates about the ecolological implications of the capitalist way of life. More broadly, I've sought to shape thinking about society-environment relations through my coedited books Remaking Reality (1998) and Social Nature (2001). They tried take seriously the 'materiality' of the biophysical world, while conceding the power of 'social constructionist' perspectives on nature and environment.

A later book, simply called Nature (2005), was an attempt to show how geography as an academic subject has been profoundly shaped by geographers' diverse attempts to make sense of the non-human world. It further suggested that geography, far from simply disclosing 'truths' about nature, is part of a much wider social process in which various 'epistemic workers' seek to shape public understandings of the world by utilising their credentials. Building-out from this, I've just written a cross-disciplinary book about how the topic of 'nature' is a very important vehicle used by all manner of thought-shapers - from journalists to artists - to govern the ideas, feelings and actions of ordinary people. It's called Making Sense of Nature (Routledge, 2014). 

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Interdisciplinary themes: 



Issues in Environmental Policy

Environmental policy formation and implementation; water resources, minerals extraction and atmospheric pollution; key stakeholders and institutions


Geographical Political Economy

The Geographical Political Economy research group is the longest-standing geography research group at The University of Manchester.  Members of the group share a common commitment to political economy i

Political economy, Economy, Geography


Society and Environment Research Group

The Society and Environment Research Group (SERG) comprises researchers from the School of Environment and Development and the School of Social Sciences at Manchester University . The SERG is one of the largest groupings of environmental social scientists in the UK and internationally. It contains internationally distinguished researchers and early career scholars who are fast gaining recognition for their work. Group members share a common interest in the causes and consequences of environmental change.

Society, Environment, Sustainability, Interdisciplinary