Staff Profile:Professor Emeritus Rob Potter

Responsibilities:
Areas of Interest:
  • Second-generation transnational migration to the Caribbean (Barbados, St Lucia, Trinidad and Tobago), and issues of transnationality.
  • Water, urban life and civilisation in the contemporary MENA region with particular reference to Jordan
  • Global forces and local urban responses in the Caribbean region
  • The interface between geographies of development and development studies

A major aspect of Rob's current research is focused on second-generation migrants to the Caribbean from the UK, USA/Canada and elsewhere, with particular reference to issues of transnationality, identity and socio-cultural adjustment. This work has been funded by the British Academy, The Leverhulme Trust, National Geographic Society Committee for Research and Exploration (with Professor Dennis Conway of Indiana University and Dr Godfrey St Bernard, St Augustine Campus of the University of the West Indies), and the Institute for Advanced Study, Indiana University.

From 2005, with seven Co-Investigators at Reading, Rob worked on a Leverhulme Trust funded Programme Grant under the title Water, Life and Civilisation, based on the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region (£1.24 million over five years). Together with Professor Emeritus Steve Nortcliff he led the Development Studies component of the project, investigating water and contemporary urban life in Amman under conditions of privatization, with Dr Khadija Darmame as postdoctoral researcher, and the use of treated waste-water in the agricultural domain, with Dr Gemma Carr as postgraduate researcher).

Rob also maintains an ongoing interest in global forces and local urban responses in the Caribbean, including the development of 'compound urban regions', the evolution of planning imperatives in the neo-liberal world order, along with wider aspects of urbanization, planning and change in the Developing World and the interface between geography and development studies.

Research groups / Centres:

Human Environments Research Group

Key Facts:

Rob was appointed to the Chair of Human Geography in January 2003. He was previously Professor of Geography at Royal Holloway, University of London, where from 1994-1999 he served as Head of Department. He was also the Founding Director of the Centre for Developing Areas Research (CEDAR) at RHUL.

Following his appointment at Reading he served as Director of Research within the School of Human and Environmental Sciences from 2003 to 2006. He Chaired the Research Planning Committee in the Department of Geography from 2003 to 2008. From 2008 to 2012 he was Head of the School of Human and Environmental Sciences now the School of Archaeology, Geography and Environmental Science (SAGES). Rob formally retired on 31 January 2013

Rob Potter is the Editor-in-Chief of the interdisciplinary journal Progress in Development Studies, published from January 2001. He was Founding Co-Editor of the Global Development and the Environment book series published by Cassell. He is a member of the Editorial Boards of the journals Third World Quarterly, the Journal of Eastern Caribbean Studies (published by the University of the West Indies), and Blackwell Geography Compass, an online journal. Rob has acted as a consultant to the Government of Barbados and the Inter-American Development Bank in connection with the preparation of the Third National Physical Development Plan for Barbados. In the past he has served on the committees of the Developing Areas Research Group, the Higher Education Study Group and the Social and Cultural Geography Study Group of the Royal Geographical Society/Institute of British Geographers.

He has been awarded the higher doctorate degree of DSc by the University of Reading for his contributions to the fields of geographies of development and urban geography, with particular reference to Caribbean development studies. In 2006 he was awarded a Visiting Research Fellowship by the Institute for Advanced Study, Indiana University in recognition of his contribution to the study of development geography and of the Caribbean basin in particular. He is an elected Academician of the Academy of Social Sciences.

Publications:
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Earlier Publications

Books

Potter, R.B., Binns, T., Elliott, J. and Smith, D. (2003): Geographies of Development, Second Edition, Prentice-Hall: London and New York.

Potter, R.B., Lloyd, M. and Jacyno, J. (2003): A Social Atlas of Barbados: Cartographic and Statistical Analysis, Arawak Publications: Kingston Jamaica.

Pugh, J. and Potter, R.B. (Eds) Participatory Planning in the Caribbean: Lessons from Practice, Ashgate: Aldershot and Burlington USA

Lloyd-Evans, S. and Potter, R.B. (2002): Gender, Ethnicity and the Informal Sector in Trinidad, Ashgate: Aldershot, and Burlington USA

Desai, V. and Potter, R.B. (2002) (Eds): The Companion to Development Studies, Arnold: London and Oxford University Press: New York.

Watson, M. and Potter, R. (2001): Low-Cost Housing in Barbados: Evolution or Social Revolution? University of the West Indies Press: Barbados, Jamaica, Trinidad and Tobago.

Potter, R.B. (2000): The Urban Caribbean in an Era of Global Change, Ashgate: Aldershot UK, Brookfield USA, Singapore, Sydney Australia.

Potter, R.B. and Lloyd-Evans, S. (1998): The City in the Developing World, Prentice-Hall: London and New York.

Papers in Refereed Journals

Potter, R.B. (2003) The environment of development, Progress in Development Studies, 3, 1-4.

Potter, R.B. (2002) Geography and development: core and periphery: a reply, Area, 34, 213-214.

Potter, R.B. (2002) Making progress in development studies, Progress in Development Studies, 2, 1-3.

Potter, R.B. (2001) Urban Castries, St Lucia revisited: global forces and local responses, Geography, 86, 329-336.

Potter, R.B. (2001) Geography and development: 'core and periphery'? Area, 33, 422-427.

Potter, R.B. (2001) Whatever happened to development geography? Geographical Journal, 167, 188-189.

Potter, R.B. and Pugh, J. (2001) Planning without plans and the neo-liberal state: the case of St. Lucia, West Indies, Third World Planning Review, 23, 323-340.

Dann, G. and Potter, R.B. (2001) Supplanting the planters: new plantations for old in Barbados, International Journal of Tourism and Hospitality Research, 2, 51-84.

Pugh, J. and Potter, R.B. (2001) The changing face of coastal zone management in Soufriere, St. Lucia, Geography, 86, 247-260.

Potter, R.B. (2001) Alan B. Mountjoy: an appreciation, Third World Quarterly, 22, 683-685.

Potter, R.B. (2001) Progress, development and change, Progress in Development Studies, 1, 1-4.

Pugh, J. and Potter, R.B. (2000) Rolling back the state and physical development planning: the case of Barbados, Singapore Journal of Tropical Geography, 21, 175-191.

Potter, R.B. and McAslan, E. (2000) Urban poverty and the urban Development Commission in Barbados, West Indies, Geography, 85, 263-267.

Potter, R.B. and Watson, M. (1999) Current housing policy issues in Barbados: with particular reference to vacant sub-divisions, Third World Planning Review, 21, 259-282.

Potter, R.B. (1999) Social conditions in St. Lucia: aggregate analysis of the 1991 Census at the Quarter level, Journal of Eastern Caribbean Studies, 24, 25-55.

Potter, R.B. (1999) The geography of relative affluence and poverty in Barbados, Caribbean Geography, 10, 79-88

Chapters in Books:

Colantonio, A. and Potter, R.B. (2003) Participatory and communicative planning in 'Special Period' Cuba, Ch. 6 in: Pugh, J. and Potter, R.B. (eds) Participatory Planning in the Caribbean: Lessons from Practice, Ashgate: Aldershot.

Pugh, J. and Potter, R.B. (2003) Participatory planning in the Caribbean: some key issues, ch.1 in: Pugh, J. and Potter, R.B. (eds) Participatory Planning in the Caribbean: Lessons from Practice, Ashgate: Aldershot.

Potter, R.B. (2002) Theories, strategies and ideologies of development, ch. 2.1 in: Desai, V. and Potter, R.B. (eds) The Companion to Development Studies, Arnold and Oxford University Press, London and New York, 61-65.

Potter, R.B. (2002) World cities and development, ch. 5.2 in: Desai, V. and Potter, R.B. (eds) The Companion to Development Studies, Arnold and Oxford University Press, London and New York, 248-252.

Potter, R.B. (2002) Global convergence, divergence and development, ch. 4.3 in: Desai, V. and Potter, R.B. (eds) The Companion to Development Studies, Arnold and Oxford University Press, London and New York, 191-196.

Potter, R.B. (2002) The nature of development and development studies, Industrialisation and employment, Urbanisation, Environment (editorial introductions) in Desai, V. and Potter, R.B. (Eds) <THE Companion to Development Studies< I />Arnold and Oxford University Press, London and New York

Potter, R.B. (2000) 'Methodology' and 'Internationalization' in: Jafari, J. (ed): The Encyclopedia of Tourism, Routledge: London and New York, pp. 32 and 388.

Potter, R.B. (1999) Low-income shelter in the Third World city, ch. 37 in: Pacione, M. (ed): Applied Geography, Routledge: London, 497-508.

Working Papers:

Potter, R.B. (2003) Foreign-born and young returning nationals to St Lucia: results of a pilot study, Reading Geographical Papers, 168

Potter, R.B. (2003) Foreign-born and young returning nationals to Barbados: results of a pilot study, Reading Geographical Papers, 166

Phillips, J. and Potter, R.B. (2003) Social dynamics of 'foreign-born' and 'young' returning nationals to the Caribbean: review of the literature, Reading Geographical Papers, 167

Potter, R.B. and Phillips, J.L. (2002) Social dynamics of 'foreign-born' and 'young' returning nationals to the Caribbean: outline of a research project, Centre for Developing Areas Research Paper, 37, 30pp.

Colantonio, A. and Potter, R.B. (2002) Participatory planning in 'Special Period' Cuba: the experience of three workshops for neighbourhood change in Havana, Centre for Developing Areas Research Paper, 36, 40pp.

Potter, R.B. and Pugh, J. (2000) An overview of physical development planning in St. Lucia, Centre for Developing Areas Research Paper, 31, 25pp.

 

Qualifications:
BSc; PhD, London; DSc, Reading; FRGS, AcSS (Human Geography)

 

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