Dr Kye Askins
- Reader (School of Geographical and Earth Sciences)
telephone: 0141 330 2289
I am a critical human geographer with research interests focusing on identity, citizenship, emotions and everyday geographies of agency and resistance. I work from postcolonial and participatory paradigms, with a central aim of actively engaged research that, both theoretically and methodologically, challenges dominant discourses and foregrounds participants as co-producers of knowledge. I am deeply committed to matters of social and environmental justice, to policy engagement and research that is transformative for participants, communities, students and a range of 'publics'.
My research centres around the ways in which identities and politics are mutually constitutive of, in and with space, place, emotions and encounters, in complex and fluid ways. I am currently exploring how mundane geographies dis/enable 'meaningful' encounters between long term residents and newcomers to inner city areas. This work specifically focuses on the role of emotions in social relations, and the ways in which emotion and affect may shift intercultural interactions beyond those in which the 'other' is always already and only different. This work draws on the notion of 'quiet politics' to foreground the potentiality of and desire to 'similarity' - though crucially not a reductivist or simplistically universalist version of sameness, rather as in tension with difference. To this end, I try to work and theorise across categories of ethnicity, gender, class and age, to critically explore the complex issues caught up in a geopolitics of citizenship in and across cities.
Pre-academia, I spent several years in the voluntary sector in the UK and abroad, working first in homeless shelters and latterly in mental health projects. I then studied Environmental Management BSc at Manchester Metropolitan University, after which I spent a few happy years in the community composting sector. Interested in the overlaps across social and environmental issues, I did my PhD in Geography at Durham University, exploring Black and Minority Ethnic communities' perceptions and use of the English National Parks (an ESRC CASE funded studentship, with North York Moors National Park Authority as collaborating partner). I spent a further 9 months at Durham University as RA on the 'Sustainable Waste Management Project' (PI Prof. Harriet Bulkeley), before being a lecturer in Geography at Northumbria University for 9 years.
I am committed to research-led teaching and enabling students as active, lifelong learners. I have experience teaching in lectures, small group seminars, individual tutorials, a range of fieldwork, as well as using innovative methods that include participatory and emotions mapping, group consensus techniques and game playing. I draw on a range of assessment types (exam, essay, reflective diary, visualization, art and performance; having students set their own assignment), recognizing that students have diverse learning styles and capacities. I have experience of writing new modules, and revising degree programmes.