Professor Mark Duffield

Professor Mark Duffield

Professor Mark Duffield
Emeritus Professor

11 Priory Road, Clifton, Bristol
BS8 1TU
(See a map)

m.duffield@bristol.ac.uk

School of Sociology, Politics and International Studies

Personal profile

Mark Duffield is Professor Emeritus and former Director of the Global Insecurities Centre.  He is also an Honorary Professor in the School of Government and Society, University of Birmingham.  Duffield has taught at the Universities of Khartoum, Aston and Birmingham and held Fellowships and Chairs at Sussex, Leeds and Lancaster. He recently completed eight years as a member of the Scientific Board of the Flemish Peace Institute, Brussels and is a Fellow of the Rift Valley Institute, London and Nairobi.  Outside of academia, during the 1980s, he was Oxfam’s Country Representative in Sudan.  Duffield has advised government departments including DFID, EU (ECHO), the Swedish Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (SIDA); also NGOs such as CAFOD, International Alert, Comic Relief and Oxfam; and UNICEF, UNOCHA, UNDP and UNHCR.  His books include Global Governance and the New Wars: The Merging of Development and Security (2001, reissued in 2014 in Zed Books presitigious Critique Influence Change series) and Development, Security and Unending War: Governing the World of People (2007, reissued 2013). His new book, Post-Humanitarianism: Governing Precarity in the Digital World, was published by Polity Press in November 2018.  

Research

In recent years, my research focused on the critique of liberal interventionism and global governance.  In particular, understanding humanitarian emergencies in terms of the changing international assemblages of power, governance and risk they call forth.  This has included critical work on the relationship between development and security, and the rise to dominance of resilience-thinking.

My new book (Post-Humanitarianism: Governing Precarity in the Digital World) will be published by Polity Press in 2018.  The world has entered an unprecedented period of uncertainty and political instability. Faced with the challenge of knowing and acting within such a world, the spread of computers and connectivity, and the arrival of new digital sense-making tools are widely celebrated as helpful.  But is this really the case or have we lost more than gained in the digital revolution?  Post-Humanitarianism contends that connectivity embodies new forms of behavioural incorporation, cognitive subordination and automated management that are themselves inseparable from the emergence of precarity as a global phenomenon.  With capitalism now in a state of permanent emergency, stasis by design has supplanted the politics of social change.  Humanitarian disasters function as sites for trialling and anticipating the modes of containment, social automation and remote management that govern this precarity and, at a time of deepening austerity, increasingly embrace us all. 

Teaching

I have taught on development and security, the changing nature of humanitarian intervention, the political economy of internal war, and a stand-alone course on the Sudans from the perspective of their being a laboratory for the changing nature of international interventionism.  

Recent Publications and Transcripts

If you have difficult getting copies of my articles or chapters, please drop me an email.

Post-Humanitarianism: Governing Precarity in the Digital World, Cambridge, Polity Press: 2018

http://politybooks.com/bookdetail/?isbn=9780745698588

Brad Evans interviews Mark Dufffield on The Death of Humanitarianism in the Los Angles Review of Books, Novemeber 26, 2018:

https://lareviewofbooks.org/article/the-death-of-humanitarianism/

'Is the Earth Curved or Flat?' - presentation prepared for workshop on 'Mapping, Mercator and Modernity: The impact of the digital', Duisburg, Germany, 25 April 2017

http://www.bristol.ac.uk/media-library/sites/global-insecurities/documents/Duffield_Curved%20or%20Flat_April%2017.pdf

'Captialism and Liberal Zombification', - prepared for seminar on 'Theorising (Dis)Order: Governing in an uncertain world', World Peace Foundation, Tufts University, 2-3 March 2017

https://sites.tufts.edu/reinventingpeace/2017/03/22/capitalism-and-liberal-zombification/

'Resilience of the Ruins: towards a critique of digital humanitarianism.' 2016. Resilience, published first online 15 March

http://www.tandfonline.com/eprint/8mCv427nVpXgfDbqn7Fk/full

'The Digital Development-Security Nexus: Linking Cyber-Humanitarianism and Drone Warfare.' 2015, in Paul Jackson (ed), Hanbook on International Security and Development. Cheltenham & Northhampton, Massachusetts: Edward Elgar.

'From immersion to simulation: remote methodologies and the decline of area studies.' 2014. Review of African Political Economy 41 (sup1), s75-s94. http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/03056244.2014.976366

With Sarah Collinson, 'Paradoxes of Presence: Risk Management and Aid Culture in Challenging Environments', ODI, Humanitarian Policy Group, 2013

Disaster-Resilience in the Network Age: Access Denial and the Rise of Cyber-Humanitarianism.  DIIS Working Paper, 2013: 2.  http://en.diis.dk/files/publications/WP2013/WP2013-33_Disaster-resilience-cyber-age_Duffield_web.pdf

'How Did we Become Unprepared?Emergency and resilience in an uncertain world, 2013, British Academy Review, (21), 55-58: http://www.britac.ac.uk/review/21/index.cfm

'Challenging Environments: Danger, Resilience and the Aid Industry', 2012, Security Dialogue, 43 (5), 475-92.

'Risk Management and the Bunkering of the Aid Industry', 2012, Development Dialogue - The End of the Development-Security Nexus? The Rise of Global Disaster Management, 58, 21-36.

 With Brad Evans, 'Bospheric Security: The Development-Security-Environment- Nexus (DESNEX), Containment and Retrenching Fortress Europe', 2011, in Peter Burgess and Serge Gutwirth (eds.), A Threat Against Europe? Security, Migration and Integration (Brussels: VUB Press), 93-110.

'Environmental terror: Uncertainty, resilience, and the bunker' , 2011, SPAIS Working Paper No. 06-11 (pdf, 600 KB)




Latest publications

  1. Evans, B & Duffield, MR, 2011, ‘Bio-Spheric Security: The Development-Security-Environment-Nexus [DESNEX], Containment and Retrenching Fortress Europe’. in: Peter Burgess, Serge Gutwirth (eds) A Threat Against Europe? Security, Migration and Integration. VUB Press, pp. 93-110
  2. Duffield, M & Evans, B, 2011, ‘Biospheric Security: The Development-Security-Environment-Nexus (DESNEX): Containing and Retrenching Fortress Europe’. in: P Burges, S Gutwirth (eds) A Threat Against Europe? Security, Migration and Integration. VUB Press, pp. 93 - 110
  3. Duffield, M, 2010, ‘Insurgencia Global y Contrainsurgencia: El Nexo Entre Desarrollo y Seguridad Desde Una Perspectiva Mas Amplia’. in: Carjaval , P E (eds) Las Raices Históricas de los Conflictos Armados Actuales. Universitat de València, pp. 21 - 48
  4. Duffield, M, 2010, ‘The Development-Security Nexus in Historical Perspective: Governing the World of Peoples’. in: Sorensen , Jens Stilhoff (eds) Challenging the Aid Paradigm: Western Currents and Asian Alternatives. Palgrave Macmillan, pp. 25 - 46
  5. Duffield, M & Hewitt, V, 2009, ‘Development and Colonialism: The Past in the Present’. James Currey

Full publications list in the University of Bristol publications system

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