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Lecturers by Professors of School of Geography and Planning at Cardiff University

The lectures were provided within programm of academic mobility between HSE and Cardiff University. Professor Paul Milbourne Head of the School of Geography and Planning at Cardiff University and Lecturer of School Andrew Williams visited Institute for regioanl studies and urban planning and gave two lectures (Brexit and the agri-food system in the UK: from migrant labour crises to the possibilities of food justice by Professor Paul Milbourne and Religion, spirituality and addiction treatment: new critical perspectives by Dr Andrew Williams).

Paul Milbourne is PhD, Professor of Human Geography and Head of the  School of Geography and Planning, Director of Cardiff University's Centre for Research on Environment, Society and Space. Director of the Wales Rural Observatory form 2004 to 2014. Main research interests lie in the field of social geography and, more specifically, the geographies of welfare and poverty. I am also interested in environmental geographies, particularly the interplay between social and environmental forms of (in)justice within contemporary society. He has researched and written widely on these themes, receiving research grants totalling £10.5 million and publishing seven books and more than 100 journal articles, book sections and research reports. He is Elected Fellow of the Academy of the Social Sciences (2011), Fellow of the Academy of the Social Sciences (2011-), Fellow of the Royal Geographical Society.

Andrew Williams is PhD in Human Geography (University of Exeter)/ He has MSc in Society and Space (University of Bristol) and BSc Human Geography (University of Bristol). Research interests of Andrew Williams centre on the relationships between welfare, ethics and care, religion, and neoliberalism. I pursue these through a series of ethnographic engagements in particular spaces in the city – drug and alcohol treatment, food banks, homelessness, protest, advocacy and care.

Abstracts:

BREXIT AND THE AGRI-FOOD SYSTEM IN THE UK: FROM MIGRANT LABOUR CRISES TO THE POSSIBILITIES OF FOOD JUSTICE

In a national referendum held on 23rd June 2016, the British people voted to withdraw from the European Union, a process that has come to be referred to as Brexit. Prominent within the EU referendum debate was the issue of immigration and EU migrant workers in particular.  The enlargement of the EU in 2004 to include eight new countries in Central and Eastern Europe led to large numbers of migrant workers from these countries moving to the UK. A significant proportion of these workers are based in the agri-food sector, which has increasingly relied on migrants in its efforts to develop more flexible modes of working to meet the shifting requirements of major supermarkets. Brexit challenges this practice given that it potentially restricts the supply of European migrant workers in the UK labour market.

In this paper I examine the growing use of migrant labour within the UK agri-food sector, highlighting changing relations between food producers and supermarkets, the rise of flexible working practices, and the experiences of migrants working within the sector. I then explore the reactions of key agri-food stakeholders to Brexit, pointing to the ways in which discourses of crisis have been employed to justify the continued use of migrant workers within the conventional agri-food sector. The paper ends with a discussion of alternative post-Brexit scenarios for the agri-food sector and, more specifically, the possibilities of developing a more locally-based and just food system in the UK.


RELIGION, SPIRITUALITY AND ADDICTION TREATMENT: NEW CRITICAL PERSPECTIVES

Religion continues to play a significant role in drug and alcohol treatment and recovery. The recent expansion of faith-based organisations (FBOs) in the service landscape has typically been interpreted as a by-product of neoliberalism, as the gaps left by shrinking public service provision and the contracting out of service delivery have been filled by private and voluntary sector organisations. Critical interpretations of faith-based therapeutic communities and residential rehabilitation programmes have been drawn to narratives of social control, indoctrination, and exclusion, yet often underplay the divergent theo-ethical expressions on the ground.

Drawing on a two month residential ethnography in an abstinence-based Christian therapeutic community in the UK, the paper seeks to make two contributions. First, it outlines a conceptual framework for understanding the complex disciplinary, therapeutic and spiritual geographies that co-constitute life in faith-based treatment spaces. Second, it draws on non-representational and post-phenomenological approaches in Human Geography to examine the variegated meanings and embodied experiences associated with mandatory practices of worship and religious instruction in the community. It illustrates how the contingent configuration of care/control might be seen as both constraining and empowering for residents. This underlines the importance for academics and policymakers to ground interpretation of faith-based drug and alcohol treatment in the lived experiences of service-users themselves.