Naomi Millner

Senior Lecturer in Human Geography, School of Geographical Sciences 

Naomi is a political-economic geographer whose work explores the knowledge politics surrounding the making and management of global ‘environments’ in the context of changing global agendas for sustainability and changing terrains of social conflict. Major themes in her work include citizenship rights, legal aspects of tenure and displacement, environmental expertise, and the construction of sustainable futures – especially in relation to the movement of new paradigms for biodiversity conservation around the world. 

Geographically, Naomi’s work focuses on transforming rural environments in Latin America, especially Colombia, Guatemala and El Salvador. Her research follows how new globalising agendas for sustainability and the rise of new technologies for environmental monitoring transform and affect the contexts within which they are introduced – against historical backdrops of coloniality, long-term conflict, disputes over land rights and citizenship, and unevenness in terms of access to resources. Naomi’s work explores how conservation has become a vehicle for the militarisation of conflicted areas – but also how rural communities are using conservation technologies (such as drones) to defend tenure rights and articulate other visions of environmental futures. 

Methodologically Naomi mobilises ethnographic and participatory approaches in combination with oral histories and archival work to explore and elicit dimensions of situated cultural struggle. Through this approach she aims to help co-create social histories and resistance practices that challenge colonial and exclusionary power relations. 

Recent publications: 

Naomi is a member of the Authority Research Network and the BioResilience project.

University of Bristol profile