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Ben McKay

  • Assistant Professor

Research Interests

My area of expertise is agrarian political economy and ecology. Over the past eight years I have lived, worked and conducted extensive field work in Bolivia, Brazil, Colombia and Venezuela. My most recent work challenges the notion of ‘agro-industrialization’ put forth by many international development institutions and national governments, arguing that in many cases such forms of agricultural development resemble a form of ‘agrarian extractivism’ rather than any kind of industrialization. The socio-economic and environmental implications of this dominant form of agricultural production are devastating for both rural and urban populations alike and leading to irreversible environmental destruction. Linkages between the urban and rural, industry and agriculture, and the environment and development are at the very heart of my research. As part of the BRICS Initiative for Critical Agrarian Studies (BICAS), I also do research on the rise of emerging economies and its implications for global agrarian transformation.

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