SOAS University of London

Centre for Development, Environment and Policy (CeDEP)

CeDEP Research

The Centre for Development, Environment and Policy brings together staff with strong but diverse specialist skills addressing major global challenges. We address these challenges from a primarily social science perspective, but are committed to working in interdisciplinary and international teams and groups. We are experienced in, and committed to, working to promote effective and sustainable development, policy and environmental management with support from a wide range of research and international development funding agencies. Major research activities focus on policies and programmes addressing climate change mitigation and adaption, food security, water resource and catchment management, poverty reduction, agriculture, natural resources and health, livelihoods and environmental change, as well as the processes and politics of policy change.

All CeDEP academic team members are actively involved in research: overseeing and/or participating in various projects; collaborating with a range of national and international partners; and publishing extensively. Research is conducted in a wide range of countries in Latin America, Africa, South and East Asia, and Europe.

Major research themes

  • Socio-economic, technical and institutional opportunities and constraints for agricultural and rural development, food systems and poverty reduction in poor areas
  • Development and application of new institutional economics in guiding agricultural development and natural resource management policy and interventions by national governments, donors, NGOs and the private sector
  • Approaches for sustainable development and environmental management, particularly relating to the atmosphere, water resources, and the environmental and developmental impacts of intensive agriculture
  • Development of distance learning techniques and pedagogic methods taking advantage of changing access to new information and communication technologies in developing countries


Recent publications by academic staff can be found listed on their respective staff pages.

Food Policy

This is a multidisciplinary journal publishing original research and critical reviews on issues in the formulation, implementation and analysis of policies for the food sector in developing, transition and advanced economies. Published by Elsevier it is now edited by Bhavani Shankar and Mario Mazzocchi (University of Bologna). Colin Poulton is an Associate Editor.

Current and/or recent projects

CeDEP staff are involved in a diverse array of projects, further details of which can be found on their respective staff pages. Examples of recent and current projects include:

PhD Research Projects

Research TitleSupervisorPhD Student / started / email
Realigning agriculture to improve nutrition: Evaluation of cross-sectoral nutrition governance in the Zambian context.Bhavani ShankarJody Harris (2011)
jody_harris at
Mechanisms of access to land within complex households in rural Burkina Faso.Nigel PooleCamilla Audia (2012)c_audia at
Resilient livelihoods: adaptation, food security and wild foods in rural Burkina Faso.Nigel PooleLucrezia Tincani (completed 2012) 
Mobile phone usage and network development in rural areas of Bangladesh.Nigel PooleZulkarin Jahangir (2012)
Z_jahangir at
Spheres of empowerment:  an analysis of the contribution of participatory monitoring and evaluation to the empowerment of small farmers in Bolivia.Nigel PooleVivian Polar (2008)
222338 at
Who benefits from, and what are the wider market impacts of, voucher subsidies in agriculture and health? Inter-sectoral analytical lessons.Andrew DorwardLuke Harman (2011)
Luke_Harman at
Agriculture and health in low income countries: investigating farm household and wider interactions in selected case studies in sub Saharan Africa.Andrew DorwardStella Wambugu (2012)
stella_wambugu at
Assessing the contribution of aquaculture to poverty reduction in Ghana.Andrew DorwardLaila Kassam (2009)
laila.kassam at
Value chain development for addressing rural poverty: asset building by smallholder coffee producers and cooperatives in Nicaragua.Nigel PooleJason Donovan (completed 2011) 

Research students working in CeDEP: are formally registered as members of the Department for Financial and Management Studies but their research training and supervision are focussed on their specific topics of interest irrespective of this registration.

Our aim is that research students become an integral part of CeDEP’s research activity. If you are able to fund your studies and wish to discuss a research theme as a potential research student with CeDEP please contact Andrew Dorward.

For formal information on research student admissions see: