Professor Ray Bush

Professor Ray Bush


I work on the political economy of Africa and the Near East and have worked in and on more than 10 countries in the Global South. 

I have had visiting research appointments at the Norwegian Nobel Institute, Oslo and the Social Science Research Centre, American University in Cairo. 

I am on the advisory board of the Tunis based NGO Observatoire de la Souveraineté et de l'Environnement (OSAE) and I am a member of the Editorial Working Group of the Review of African Political Economy where I have worked for more than 35 years.

I am a jurist for the African Studies Association UK book prize 2018 and I am on the International Advisory Board of the Journal of Agrarian Change. I am also founding member of Thimar the Beirut based research collective on agriculture, environment and labour in the Arab world.

In 2013 I was one of five appointed by the UN's FAO to write a profile of ‘Family Farming in the Near East and North Africa’ marking the UN's year of family farming.

Research interests

My research focuses on farmer and peasant responses to economic crisis. I have worked on this in relation to Artisanal Small Scale Mining in Ghana, and on the impact of war, occupation and dispossession on family farming inthe Middle East and Africa with focus on Egypt and Tunisia. I am currently finishing a joint book project with Habib Ayeb on the importance of family farming during the Arab uprisings in 2010-2011.

My documentary film Fellahin on this topic was produced and directed jointly with Habib Ayeb.

My interview with Thimar on family farming in the near East.

My interview with Samir Amin.

Essay: The Revolution in Permanence, Jadaliyya

Interview, China Radio International, Beijing, ‘People in the  Know’, Egypt Election, May 2012

Guardian: Egypt's democracy is on the street

Al-Masry Al-Youm Q & A : The Horrors of Egypt’s Rural Life (Part I)

Al-Masry Al-Youm Q & A: The Horrors of Egypt’s Rural Life (Part II)

Perth Newstalk radio interview on Egypt's Uprising [MP3]

Ahram Online Article: Egypt: A Permanent Revolution?

Guardian Article: Mining companies are not interested in Africa's development

Review of African Political Economy

Leeds University Centre for African Studies

Institute of Social Study

Council for the Development of Social Science Research in Africa

TWN Africa

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


  • BA (Hons) Social Science, 1977, Kingston Polytechnic
  • MA Political Sociology, 1978, Leeds University
  • PhD 'The colonial factor and Social Transformation on the Gold Coast to 1930', Leeds University

Research groups and institutes

  • Centre for African Studies