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Professor Tim Forsyth

forsyth-t-113x148Professor of Environment and Development 



Professor Forsyth is a specialist on the politics of environment and development, with a focus on understanding contested science and risk within environmental governance. His work analyses two themes: the politics and policy processes of contested environmental debates in rapidly developing countries; and the evolution of new multi-actor, multi-level forms of governance such as cross-sector partnerships or deliberative forums. He has written on climate change governance; forest policies in Asia; and social movements and local governance. He has degrees from the Universities of Oxford and London, and has been a fellow at Chatham House (Royal Institute of International Affairs); the Institute of Development Studies, Sussex; and the Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University. He has more than five years' work and research experience in Asia and is fluent in Thai. Professor Forsyth is also the general editor of the Routledge Encyclopedia of International Development, and is on the editorial boards of Global Environmental Politics, Critical Policy Studies, Conservation and Society, Progress in Development Studies and Social Movement Studies.

Research interests and area of supervision

  • Politics, environment
  • Environment and development/ political ecology
  • Environmental governance
  • Science and technology Studies
  • Implementing global environmental policy in developing countries
  • Asia, especially Southeast Asia

Selected recent publications



  • 2012: 'Politicizing environmental science does not mean denying climate science nor endorsing it uncritically', Global Environmental Politics 12: 2 18-23.
  • 2011: 'Expertise needs transparency not blind trust: A deliberative approach to integrating science and social participation', Critical Policy Studies 5: 3 318-323
  • 2010: 'Panacea or Paradox? Cross-sector partnerships, climate change and development', Wiley Interdisciplinary Reviews: Climate Change 1: 5 683-696
  • 2009: 'Community Based Adaptation to Climate Change: Strengthening resilience through development', Environment 51: 4 22-31 (with Jessica Ayers).
  • 2009: 'How to participate, integrate and coordinate? REDD and multi-level, multi-actor governance' pp. 113-122 in Angelsen, A. and Brockhaus, M. (eds) Realising REDD+: National strategy and policy options, Bognor: Centre for International Forestry Research (CIFOR).
  • 2009: 'The perspective of resistance: Analyzing local responses to agrarian change in Asia,' pp. 267-276 in Caouette, D. and Turner, S. (eds) Agrarian Angst and Rural Resistance in Contemporary Southeast Asia, London: Routledge
  • 2008: 'Political ecology and the epistemology of social justice', Geoforum 39: 2 756-64
  • 2007: 'Are environmental movements socially exclusive? An historical study from Thailand' World Development 35: 12 2110-2130
  • 2007: 'Promoting the "development dividend" of climate technology transfer: can cross-sector partnerships help?' World Development 35: 10 1684-1698
  • 2005: 'Building deliberative public-private partnerships for waste management in Asia,' Geoforum 36:4.
  • 2005: 'Enhancing climate technology transfer through greater public-private cooperation: lessons from Thailand and the Philippines,' Natural Resource Forum 29: 165-176.
  • 2005: 'The Political Ecology of the Ecosystem Approach for Forests,' in Sayer, J (ed) The Ecosystem Approach for International Conservation, Gland WWF and IUCN.
  • 2004: 'Social movements and environmental democratization in Thailand', pp195-216 in Jasanoff, S and Long, M (eds) Earthy Politics: local and global in environmental governance, Cambridge, MA: MIT Press.
  • 2004: 'Industrial pollution and social movements in Thailand,' in Peet, R and Watts, M (eds) Liberation Ecologies: Environment, Development and Social Movements (second edition), pp 422-438 (London and New York: Routledge).
  • 2003: 'Climate change investment and technology transfer in Southeast Asia', pp 237-257 in Harris, P (ed) Climate Change and East Asia: The politics of global warming in China and East Asia, London and New York: Routledge.
  • 2002: 'Environmental social movements in Thailand: a critical assessment,' Asian Review 15:106-127.
  • 2002: 'In the eyes of the state: negotiating a 'rights-based approach' to forest governance in Thailand,' World Development 30:9 1591-1605 (with Craig Johnson)

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