Professor Jo Sharp

  • Professor of Geography/Deputy Head of School (School of Geographical and Earth Sciences)

telephone: 01413305405

Research interests

Brief biography

I came to the University of Glasgow in January 1995 after finishing my PhD "Condensing the Cold War: Reader's Digest and American Identity" at Syracuse University at the end of 1994. My research interests are in feminist, postcolonial, cultural and political geographies. Much of my research has been undertaken in Africa, most recently in Tanzania. I am an active member of the Glasgow Centre for International Development. I am currently the reviews editor for Political Geography and sit on the boards of Scottish Geographical Journal, Geography Compass, Resources, Urban Studies and Space and Polity.


Current research

Subaltern Geopolitics

This research seeks to reconstruct an alternative vision of the current “war on terror” from the point of view of a continent which is usually rendered silent in various geopolitical visions, or little more than a “site of violence and disorder” and thus always offering the possibility of threat to security. During the Cold War, Africa was part of the “left over” territory of the Third World, whose future was yet to be significantly channelled down the developmental path of either the First or Second alternatives. Similarly in the period since the attacks on the US on September 11th 2001, Africa has been brought into geopolitical visions only in the language of “failed states” which might harbour dangerous forces. In both cases, Africa failed to fit into the neat binary of US-communism or US-terrorism, except as a place which, if not properly shored-up, might provide “breeding ground” for either. Both geopolitical accounts, and critical engagements with them, have tended to overlook alternative, especially African, perspectives on security and international relations: Africa may be represented in geopolitical arguments, but geopolitical arguments originating in Africa rarely get heard. Focusing on Tanzania as an example which lies outside of the binary US-"terrorist other", but is still very much entangled within the discourses of terror and security at the heart of dominant geopolitics, this research will analyse the discourses through which the war on terror is communicated to Tanzanians through the popular press to examine the extent to which a distinct postcolonial view exists which offers creative alternative, or subaltern, conceptualisations of security and geopolitics. This project is supported by an ESRC Mid Career Fellowship, Creating postcolonial subjectivity subaltern geopolitics, knowledge and citizenship in Tanzania (RES-070-27-0039).


The social ecology of bacterial zoonoses in northern Tanzania

Bacterial zoonoses are responsible for a large proportion of febrile illnesses in northern Tanzania, where neglected bacterial zoonotic pathogens, e.g. Leptospira, Coxiella and Brucella spp., account for 11 times more febrile hospital admissions than malaria.  However, these infections are under-diagnosed and relatively little is known about transmission patterns among animal hosts, which host species are responsible for transmission to humans, or the key socio-economic and behavioural determinants of human disease risk in different agro-ecological settings. This study will integrate several disciplinary approaches, including socio-economic and behavioural studies, human febrile illness surveillance, and linked human-animal epidemiological studies.  The research project, will take place in Kilimanjaro and Arusha Regions and will involve hospital based surveillance of human febrile cases, a case-control study of febrile patients, a cross-sectional survey of people and animals to look at household exposures and social science studies in all of these settings. I am a co-investigator on this project with Professor Sarah Cleaveland (PI), Professor Dan Haydon and Dr Jo Halliday of the Institute of Biodiversity, Animal Health and Comparative Medicine, in collaboration with  the Kilimanjaro Christian Medical Centre, the Tanzania National Institute for Medical Research (NIMR), Sokoine University of Agriculture, the Tanzanian  Ministry of Livestock and Fisheries Development, Tanzania Wildlife Research Institute (TAWIRI), Duke University Medical Center.  The project is supported by the BBSRC (BB/J010367/1) and the US National Institute of Health.


Previous projects

Popular geographical imaginations and knowledges 

I have an interest in the creation of popular geographical imaginations and knowledges and the ways these are connected to everyday realities of identity and gender roles. In my PhD research and subsequent publications, I have examined how the media construct particular imagined world geographies for their audience at the same time as generating a sense of national identification and purpose for them. I have also published on popular geographies constructed through travel writing, literature and film. 


The role of public art in cities

Great claims are currently being made for the role of public art in cities, particularly in Europe and North America. Some have argued that such projects can reclaim a sense of community while others insist that such aesthetic improvements have an influence on the economic prospects of an area. There are also interesting questions which relate to the responsibility that public art has to its publics and the processes through which various groups of people are involved in the production of the art. This part of my research aims to examine the introduction of a number of public art projects in Scotland both in terms of delivery by a range of design and planning professionals and as the works are received by the various publics they are directed to.


Gender and indigenous knowledges in Upper Egypt

The overall aim of the research project is to identify and understand the ways in which indigenous environmental knowledges are constructed and mediated, and subsequently employed by local people living in difficult, semi-arid environments to manage the natural resource base for everyday life. Fieldwork is centred around the Wadi Allaqi area in Upper Egypt. Of particular interest are the ways in which male and female knowledges are constructed differently in relation to the use and management of such resources.

Selected publications


Sharp, J. 2014-2018 Social, Economic and Environmental Drivers of Zoonoses in Tanzania (SEEDZ), (DfID and RCUK, awaiting project code), (co-PI, 45%), £2.7m (fEC).

Sharp, J. 2014-2017 Hazards Associated with Zoonotic enteric pathogens in Emerging Livestock meat pathways (HAZEL), (DfID and RCUK, awaiting project code), (social science lead, 35%), £788k (fEC).

Sharp, J. 2012-2016 Ecological and Socio‐Economic Factors Impacting Maintenance and Dissemination of Antibiotic Resistance in the Greater Serengeti Ecosystem. BBSRC/ESRC/NSF (BB/K01126X/1), (Co-I, 40%), UK funding: c£560k (fEC), total c.£2m.

Sharp, J. 2011-2014. The impact and social ecology of bacterial zoonoses in northern Tanzania, BBSRC/ESRC/NIH ( BB/J010367/1) , (Co-I, 40%), UK funding: £534,505 (fEC), total c.£1.5m

Sharp, J. 2011-13. ESRC Mid-Career Development Fellowship, Creating postcolonial subjectivity subaltern geopolitics, knowledge and citizenship in Tanzania, £249,708 (ESRC, RES-070-27-0039).

Sharp, J. 2010-11. The environmental and social factors affecting human disease risk in Kibera, Nairobi, £2040, Carnegie Trust.

Sharp, J. 2009. A subaltern critical geopolitics of the “war on terror”: postcolonial conceptualisations of security in Tanzania, £2,360 (Carnegie Trust).

Briggs, J. and Sharp, J. 2006-2009. Environmental management and sustainable development knowledge transfer and research training programme. £104,540 (Scottish Executive International Development Fund). In collaboration with: North-West University (Mafikeng Campus), South Africa; University of Dar es Salaam, Tanzania; and University of Malawi, Malawi.

Sharp, J. and Briggs, J. 2003-2004. Women's literacy and handicraft programmes. £8,750 (DFID Gender and Development Small Projects). Co-Investigators: I. Springuel (South Valley University, Aswan).

Briggs, J. and Sharp, J. 2002-2003. Bedouin women's development programme, Wadi Allaqi, South Eastern Desert, Egypt. £9,970 (DFID Gender and Development Small Projects). Co-Investigators: I. Springuel (South Valley University, Aswan).

Briggs, J. and Sharp, J. 2001-04. Natural resource management for sustainable development in arid environments. £25,000 (DFID Academic Links Programme). Co-Investigators: A. Belal and I. Springuel (South Valley University, Aswan).

Briggs, J. and Sharp, J. 2000-2001. Bedouin women and sheep production in Upper Egypt, £8,950 (DFID Gender and Development Small Projects). Co-Investigator: I. Springuel (South Valley University, Aswan).

Briggs, J. and Sharp, J. 2000-2002. Indigenous environmental knowledges and sustainable development in semi-arid Africa, £95,411 (DFID/ESCOR). Co-Investigators: I. Springuel (South Valley University, Aswan).


Current PhD students:
  • Nicola Pritchard
  • Georgia Ladbury
  • Sabina Lawrie
Completed PhD students:
  • Emma Laurie 
  • Patricia Campbell 
  • Julius Mngumi
  • Andrew Wilbur 
  • Thomas Aneurin Smith
  • Orleans Mfune
  • David Beel
  • Cheryl McGeachan
  • Geraldine Perriam
  • Norman Rae 
  • Richard Kyle
  • Andrjez Zieleneic


I contribute to Geography-1, the core courses in Geography-3 and -4 and the MRes in Human Geography.  My new Honours Option on Geographies of Development will run in the academic year 2014-15.

All publications

List by: Type | Date

Jump to: 2014 | 2013 | 2012 | 2011 | 2010 | 2009 | 2008 | 2007 | 2006 | 2005 | 2004 | 2003 | 2002 | 2001
Number of items: 45.


Sharp, J. (2014) The violences of remembering. Area, 46(4), pp. 357-358. (doi:10.1111/area.12138_7)


Hertz, J. T., Munishi, O. M., Sharp, J. P., Reddy, E. A., and Crump, J. A. (2013) Comparing actual and perceived causes of fever among community members in a low malaria transmission setting in northern Tanzania. Tropical Medicine and International Health, 18(11), pp. 1406-1415. (doi:10.1111/tmi.12191)

Sharp, J. P. (2013) Geopolitics at the margins? Reconsidering genealogies of critical geopolitics. Political Geography, 37, pp. 20-29. (doi:10.1016/j.polgeo.2013.04.006)

Sharp, J. P. (2013) Reply: thinking through marginality. Political Geography, 37, pp. 36-37. (doi:10.1016/j.polgeo.2013.04.007)

Sharp, J. (2013) Africa’s colonial present: development, violence, and postcolonial security. In: Huggan, G. (ed.) Oxford Handbook of Postcolonial Studies. Oxford University Press: Oxford, pp. 235-252. ISBN 9780199588251 (doi:10.1093/oxfordhb/9780199588251.013.0005)

Dodds, K., Kuus, M. and Sharp, J., (Eds.) (2013) The Ashgate Research Companion to Critical Geopolitics. Series: Ashgate research companion. Ashgate: Farnham. ISBN 9781409423805

Shaw, I. G.R., and Sharp, J. P. (2013) Playing with the future: social irrealism and the politics of aesthetics. Social and Cultural Geography, 14(3), pp. 341-359. (doi:10.1080/14649365.2013.765027)


Pollock, V.L., and Sharp, J. (2012) Real participation or the tyranny of participatory practice? Public art and community involvement in the regeneration of the Raploch, Scotland. Urban Studies, 49(14), pp. 3063-3079. (doi:10.1177/0042098012439112)


Sharp, J., Campbell, P., and Laurie, E. (2011) Securing development. Area, 43(4), pp. 507-508. (doi:10.1111/j.1475-4762.2011.01051.x)

Sharp, J. (2011) Subaltern geopolitics: introduction. Geoforum, 42(3), pp. 271-273. (doi:10.1016/j.geoforum.2011.04.006)

Sharp, J. (2011) A subaltern critical geopolitics of the war on terror: postcolonial security in Tanzania. Geoforum, 42(3), pp. 297-305. (doi:10.1016/j.geoforum.2011.04.005)

Sharp, J. (2011) Situating progressive geopolitics: culture, politics and language. Political Geography, 30(1), pp. 51-52. (doi:10.1016/j.polgeo.2010.09.007)

Sharp, J., and Dowler, L. (2011) Framing the field. In: Del Casino , V., Thomas, M., Cloke, P. and Panelli, R. (eds.) A Companion to Social Geography. Series: Wiley-Blackwell companions to geography. Blackwell. ISBN 9781405189774


Sharp, J., Briggs, J., Yacoub, H., and Hamed, N. (2010) Women’s empowerment and poverty alleviation: a critical re-evaluation of a GAD poverty alleviation project in southern Egypt. In: Chant, S.H. (ed.) International Handbook of Gender and Poverty: Concepts, Research, Policy. Edward Elgar: Cheltenham, pp. 587-593. ISBN 9781849800952

Sharp, J., Campbell, P., and Laurie, E. (2010) The violence of aid? Giving, power and active subjects in One World Conservatism. Third World Quarterly, 31(7), pp. 1125-1143. (doi:10.1080/01436597.2010.518789 )


Briggs, J., and Sharp, J. (2009) One hundred years researching Egypt: from the rule of experts to Bedouin voices? Scottish Geographical Journal, 125(3-4), pp. 256-272. (doi:10.1080/14702540903364294)

Sharp, J. (2009) Geography and gender: what belongs to feminist geography? Emotion, power and change. Progress in Human Geography, 33(1), pp. 74-80. (doi:10.1177/0309132508090440)

Belal, A., Briggs, J., Sharp, J., and Springuel, I. (2009) Bedouins by the Lake: Environment, Change, and Sustainability in Southern Egypt. American University in Cairo Press: Cairo. ISBN 9789774161988

Sharp, J. (2009) Critical geopolitics. In: Thrift, N.J. and Kitchin, R. (eds.) International Encyclopedia of Human Geography. Elsevier: Amsterdam, Netherlands. ISBN 9780080449111

Sharp, J. (2009) Geographies of Postcolonialism: Spaces of Power and Representation. SAGE Publications: London, UK. ISBN 9781412907781

Sharp, J. (2009) Human agency. In: Gregory, D., Johnston, R., Pratt, G., Watts, M. and Whatmore, S. (eds.) The Dictionary of Human Geography. Wiley-Blackwell: Chichester, UK. ISBN 9781405132879

Sharp, J. (2009) Humanistic geography. In: Gregory, D., Johnston, R., Pratt, G., Watts, M. and Whatmore, S. (eds.) The Dictionary of Human Geography. Wiley-Blackwell: Chichester, UK. ISBN 9781405132879

Sharp, J. (2009) Idealism. In: Gregory, D., Johnston, R., Pratt, G., Watts, M. and Whatmore, S. (eds.) The Dictionary of Human Geography. Wiley-Blackwell: Chichester, UK. ISBN 9781405132879

Sharp, J. (2009) Indigenous knowledges. In: Gregory, D., Johnston, R., Pratt, G., Watts, M. and Whatmore, S. (eds.) The Dictionary of Human Geography. Wiley-Blackwell: Chichester, UK. ISBN 9781405132879

Sharp, J. (2009) Subjectivity. In: Thrift, N.J. and Kitchin, R. (eds.) International Encyclopedia of Human Geography. Elsevier: Amsterdam, Netherlands. ISBN 9780080449111


Moyo, B., Mwiturubani, D., Sharp, J., and Simamane, Z. (2008) Voices from the South: report from a workshop on environmental management and sustainable development in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania, August 2007. Geographical Journal, 174(2), pp. 149-150. (doi:10.1111/j.1475-4959.2008.00284.x)

Sharp, J. (2008) Critical geopolitics (1996), Gearoid O Tuathail. In: Hubbard, P., Kitchin, R. and Valentine, G. (eds.) Key Texts in Human Geography. SAGE Publications: Los Angeles, USA, pp. 189-196. ISBN 9781412922609

Sharp, J. (2008) In the space of theory: introduction. Environment and Planning D: Society and Space, 26(1), pp. 169-170. (doi:10.1068/ddiscuss)


Briggs, J., Sharp, J., Yacoub, H., Hamed, N., and Roe, A. (2007) The nature of indigenous environmental knowledge production: evidence from Bedouin communities in southern Egypt. Journal of International Development, 19(2), pp. 239-251. (doi:10.1002/jid.1337)

Paddison, R., and Sharp, J. (2007) Questioning the end of public space: Reclaiming control of local banal spaces. Scottish Geographical Journal, 123(2), pp. 87-106. (doi: 10.1080/14702540701615236)

Pollock, V., and Sharp, J. (2007) Constellations of identity: place-ma(r)king beyond heritage. Environment and Planning D: Society and Space, 25(5), pp. 1061-1078. (doi:10.1068/d78j)

Sharp, J. (2007) Embodying the state and citizenship. Geoforum, 38, pp. 602-604. (doi:10.1016/j.geoforum.2006.11.026)

Sharp, J. (2007) Geography and gender: finding feminist political geographies. Progress in Human Geography, 31, pp. 381-387. (doi:10.1177/0309132507077091)

Sharp, J. (2007) The life and death of five spaces: public art and community regeneration in Glasgow. Cultural Geographies, 14, pp. 274-292. (doi:10.1177/1474474007075363)

Sharp, J., and Hansom, J. (2007) Editorial. Scottish Geographical Journal, 123(3), p. 153. (doi:10.1080/14702540801915924)


Sharp, J., and Briggs, J. (2006) Postcolonialism and development: new dialogues? Geographical Journal, 172(1), pp. 6-9. (doi:10.1111/j.1475-4959.2006.00181.x)

Hansom, J., Sharp, J., Evans, D., and Nightingale, A. (2006) Editorial. Scottish Geographical Journal, 122(1), iii-iv. (doi:10.1080/00369220600938780)


Sharp, J. (2005) Geography and gender: feminist methodologies in collaboration and in the field. Progress in Human Geography, 29, pp. 304-309. (doi:10.1191/0309132505ph550pr)

Sharp, J., Pollock, V., and Paddison, R. (2005) Just art for a just city: Public art and social inclusion in urban regeneration. Urban Studies, 42, pp. 1001-1023. (doi:10.1080/00420980500106963)


Briggs, J., and Sharp, J. (2004) Indigenous knowledges and development: a postcolonial caution. Third World Quarterly, 25(4), pp. 661-676. (doi:10.1080/01436590410001678915)


Briggs, J., Sharp, J., Hamed, N., and Yacoub, H. (2003) Changing women's roles, changing environmental knowledges: evidence from Upper Egypt. Geographical Journal, 169(4), pp. 313-325. (doi:10.1111/j.0016-7398.2003.00095.x)

Sharp, J., Briggs, J., Yacoub, H., and Hamed, N. (2003) Doing gender and development: understanding empowerment and local gender relations. Transactions of the Institute of British Geographers, 28(3), pp. 281-295. (doi:10.1111/1475-5661.00093)

Sharp, J. (2003) Indigestible geopolitics: the many readigs of the digest (197-206). Geopolitics, 8(2), pp. 157-206.


Sharp, J.P. (2002) Writing travel/travelling writing: Roland Barthes detours the Orient. Environment and Planning D: Society and Space, 20, pp. 155-166. (doi:10.1068/d220t)


Sharp, J. (2001) A Feminist Geopolitics? Space and Polity, 5(3), 165-176(12).

This list was generated on Wed Jul 1 05:49:29 2015 BST.