Dr. Ian Shaw

Dr. Ian Shaw


I joined the School of Politics and International Studies in September 2020 as an Associate Professor of Global Security Challenges. My PhD (2011) and MA (2008) are both in Geography from the University of Arizona. I received my BSc (First Class Hons) from Lancaster University (2006).

Research interests

I study political violence in its many forms: (1) Global capitalism and its discontents. (2) Ecological injustice, mental health, and climate change. (3) Warfare and conflict.

First, my major research is on global capitalism and beyond-capitalist politics. My 2019 book, Wageless Life: A Manifesto for a Future Beyond Capitalism, is a call to build new futures and collective worlds beyond the toxic failures of capitalism. Noam Chomsky describes it as a “lucid and penetrating study” that “provides valuable guidelines for the task of ‘seizing our autonomy back’ in a world of justice, freedom, communal life, and human dignity. Perceptive and enlightening, and a ray of light in dark times.”

Second, I research ecological justice, mental health, and climate geopolitics. I am interested in how we can build new urban commons and systems to challenge the social and economic costs of climate breakdown. I lead an interdisciplinary team called the International Green Academy whose mission is to partner universities, schools, and community to build gardens that empower young people.

Third, I have long researched U.S. drone warfare, military strategy, and domestic policing. This culminated in a 2016 book with the University of Minnesota Press, Predator Empire: Drone Warfare and Full Spectrum Dominance. I am interested in the collision between machines, state violence, and the human condition.

<h4>Research projects</h4> <p>Any research projects I'm currently working on will be listed below. Our list of all <a href="https://essl.leeds.ac.uk/dir/research-projects">research projects</a> allows you to view and search the full list of projects in the faculty.</p>

Research groups and institutes

  • Centre for Contemporary Political Theory
<h4>Postgraduate research opportunities</h4> <p>The school welcomes enquiries from motivated and qualified applicants from all around the world who are interested in PhD study. Our <a href="https://phd.leeds.ac.uk">research opportunities</a> allow you to search for projects and scholarships.</p>