Keith Barney

Program-Specific Researcher, Center for Southeast Asian Studies, Kyoto University
-Academic Qualifications: Ph.D., Geography, York University, Canada 2011
-Research Interests: Political Ecology, Resource Geography, Agrarian Studies, Southeast Asia Area Studies

Keith has conducted research on the political ecology and political economy of forestry in Southeast Asia for the past 14 years, including in Laos, Thailand, Sarawak, Cambodia and Vietnam. His 2011 doctoral dissertation is entitled “Grounding Global Forest Economies: Resource Governance and Commodity Power in Rural Laos.” Keith has also worked with a number of policy research organizations, including the Rights and Resources Initiative, Forest Trends, and the Centre for International Forestry Research, on issues related to Asian forest markets and sustainable trade, and the implications of China’s resource shadow for local communities and environments in Southeast Asia. Keith’s recent publications include a chapter in the edited volume Taking Southeast Asia to Market: Commodities, Nature and People in the Neoliberal Age (Ed.’s Joseph Nevins and Nancy Lee Peluso, Cornell University Press, 2008); and articles in the Geographical Journal (“Laos and the Making of a ‘Relational’ Resource Frontier”, 2009) and Critical Asian Studies (“Land, Livelihoods and Remittances: A Political Ecology of Youth Outmigration Across the Lao-Thai Mekong Border”, 2012). While a visiting Post-Doctoral Fellow at Kyoto University, Keith is interested in continuing his research on forest concession governance and the making of an ‘environmental state’ in Laos, through a comparative analysis of different resource sector investments and the dynamics of community transformation. He will also be seeking to complete a number of scholarly articles on the economic geography and political ecology of resource development in Laos, and to begin a book manuscript based on his dissertation.