Dr Simon Manda


I joined POLIS in 2021 as Lecturer in International Development.

This followed one year (2020 – 2021) as a Visiting Research with Oregon State University – Cascades, Bend, Oregon (USA). I worked on a project funded by the National Science Foundation whose centrality pointed to adaptation possibilities for individuals, neighbourhoods and communities who are faced with repetitive flooding. The project specifically focused on the policy options for communities who wish to relocate together. 

Prior to this I was Lecturer for ten years at the University of Zambia (UNZA) in the Department of Development Studies, joining as a Teaching Assistant and becoming a Lecturer. I also took on the role of Postgraduate Coordinator. 

I have had Non-Visiting Fellowship Appointments at the Centre for Trade and Development (CTPD) in Zambia and the Pan African Scientific Research Council. Prior to this I visited Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs at Syracuse University (USA) as a Mandela Washington Fellow.  

Research interests

I have a core research interest in the political economy of ‘land grabs:’ how do large-scale agricultural investments play out in different contexts, and what do these mean for local communities? I have research interests in sustainable development goals, including agribusinesses, and agri-food systems, livelihoods, food security and nutrition and gender. I also have an interest in natural resource governance (land and water), climate adaptation and environmental sustainability as applied to African agriculture and food systems.

My research tends to take a critical reflective practice approach to identifying local and rural problems. I have worked primarily on Zambia but have knowledge of sub-Saharan Africa. 

<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>


  • PhD Environment and Development
  • MA Global Development, University of Leeds
  • BA Development Studies, University of Zambia

Professional memberships

  • Member of Development Studies Association

Student education

I teach on several modules, including the following: 

  • PIED1212: Making of the Modern World 
  • PIED 3261: Violence and Reconciliation in Africa 
  • PIED 1806: Contemporary Africas: Politics, Society and the Environment 
  • PIED 245501: State and Politics in Africa
  • LAW 5301M: Security, Conflict and Justice
  • LAW5005M: New Frontiers of Security, Conflict and Justice 

Research groups and institutes

  • Centre for Global Development
<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>