Position / Job title: Lecturer
Department: History Department
Institution: The Open University
Sandip Hazareesingh is Principal Investigator of the AHRC-funded Commodity Histories project and Co-Director of the Commodities of Empire British Academy Research project (2007-17). At the Open University, he is a member of the History Department and the Ferguson Centre for African and Asian Studies in the Arts Faculty as well as of the Open Space Research Centre in the Faculty of Social Sciences. His research interests are focused primarily on South Asia and lie at the intersection of social history and historical geography. His work seeks to shed fresh light on the colonial period of modern history by showing how climate and environment impacted on and influenced colonial agrarian policies in nineteenth and twentieth century India. His main current project explores the different historical meanings and understandings of climate between on the one hand, colonial groups anxious to progress export-focused agricultural commodities, and on the other, indigenous peasants primarily concerned to ensure food and livelihood security. This research is informed by a political ecology perspective that emphasises the co-production of socio-environments by a diverse range of both human and non-human actors and that has done much, in recent years, to reinvigorate the radical tradition of historical-geographical writing. This work has also greatly benefited from his participation in a four-year research collaboration (2009-13) with the Technology and Agrarian Development Group at Wageningen University on the theme of ‘Commodities and Anti-Commodities’, funded by the Netherlands Organisation for Scientific Research (NWO).