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Carl Death


  • Politics, School of Social Science, Arthur Lewis Building, University of Manchester, Oxford Road

    M13 9PL Manchester

Personal profile


Carl joined the University of Manchester in August 2013 as a Senior Lecturer in International Political Economy, after four years in the Department of International Politics, Aberystwyth University, and a year in the School of Law and Government, Dublin City University. He has conducted research in South Africa, Tanzania and the USA, and has held visiting researcher positions at The MacMillan Centre for International and Area Studies and the Agrarian Studies Program at Yale University; the Wits Institute for Social and Economic Research (WISER) at the University of the Witwatersrand in Johannesburg; Stellenbosch University; and the Centre for Civil Society (CCS) at the University of KwaZulu-Natal in Durban. 

Carl works a condensed week, Tuesday-Friday, and so is unavailable on Mondays.  


Research interests

Carl’s research focuses on environmental politics in Africa, with a particular interest in critical and postcolonial approaches. Recent books include The Green State in Africa (Yale University Press, 2016), Global Justice: The Basics (Routledge, 2016, with Huw L. Williams), Governing Sustainable Development: Partnerships, Protests and Power at the World Summit (Routledge, 2010) and three edited collections, The African Affairs Reader: Key Texts in Politics, Development and International Relations (OUP, 2017, with Nic Cheeseman and Lindsay Whitfield), Critical Environmental Politics (Routledge, 2014), and Critical Perspectives on African Politics: Liberal interventions, state-building and civil society (Routledge, 2014, with Clive Gabay).  

Current interests include the role of African science fiction in imagining future climates.

Other teaching information

I have taught courses on African politics and development, environmental politics, social movements and international relations in universities in England, Wales and Ireland, as well as in South Africa. One of the interesting challenges I have engaged with is how to make these topics relevant to and connected with the everyday lives and local contexts of students from diverse backgrounds and different societies. Issues of personal identity and background (such as language, culture, gender, age, race, sexuality and so on), as well as participation in activities such as consumption, travel, activism, voting, employment and so on, are all as important elements of international politics as relations between states. In a postcolonial world education can be made more political and transformative by engaging with such issues. As such my courses have sought to encourage personal reflection and subjective interpretation, whilst not remaining restricted to or constrained by individual standpoints. I want students to ask questions, question received wisdom, and develop their own research interests and projects.


PhD Supervision

I am happy to supervise PhD students on topics including African politics, environmental politics and sustainable development, and work on social movements and resistance in global politics. Please get in touch to discuss research proposals.

In recent years I have examined theses on a variety of topics at universities including Aberystwyth, Birmingham, Cardiff, Carleton, Cambridge, Central European University, Cape Town, East London, Gothenburg, Kent, Manchester, Sheffield, UNISA and Wits.


Current PhD students

Joshua Barritt, Resilience-Based Marine Biodiversity Conservation Policy on Australia’s Great Barrier Reef: Mitigation, Adaptation and Restoration

Julia Loginovic, Individualisation Discourse in Global Neoliberal Governance and its Role in Subjectivity Production: the Case of the World Development Reports

Sam Toscano, Investigating the sustainability communications of corporate climate pacts: governmentality and the (re)structuring of environmental action


Completed PhD students

Kelvin Charles, The city, production and resistance: Hardt and Negri, Occupy encampments and the issue of space

Simon Chin-yee, Kenya and the global climate change regime

Katja Daniels, The politics of international investment law: Transnational corporations, social movements, and the struggle for the future

Jake Flavell, Capitalism with a ‘Human Face’: Face-to-Face Charity Fundraising and the Critique of Ideology

Kai Heron, Many struggles, one fight: Deleuze | Guattari, Lacan and the US anti-fracking movement

Amanda Källstig, Humouring the state? Zimbabwean stand-up comedians as political actors

Gediminas Lesutis, The politics of precarity and global capitalist expansion: The case of mining, dispossesion and suffering in Tete, Mozambique

Erzsebet Strausz, Being in Discourse: An experience book of sovereignty

Elaine Tan, Understanding African International Society: An English School Approach

Charlotte Weatherill, Vulnerability and resistance: islanding climate change politics

Expertise related to UN Sustainable Development Goals

In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This person’s work contributes towards the following SDG(s):

  • SDG 1 - No Poverty
  • SDG 2 - Zero Hunger
  • SDG 5 - Gender Equality
  • SDG 7 - Affordable and Clean Energy
  • SDG 8 - Decent Work and Economic Growth
  • SDG 11 - Sustainable Cities and Communities
  • SDG 13 - Climate Action
  • SDG 14 - Life Below Water
  • SDG 16 - Peace, Justice and Strong Institutions

Research Beacons, Institutes and Platforms

  • Digital Futures
  • Creative Manchester


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