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Sustainable Development Research Cluster

Growing demand for food, water, energy and land combined with climate change, inequality and weak governance present a challenge to individuals, communities and nations seeking to achieve sustainable development and wellbeing.

The Sustainable Development Research Cluster (SDRC) aims to produce interdisciplinary cutting-edge research that contributes to our understanding of how to improve governance, strengthen institutions and mobilise behaviour to address these challenges.

Our approach

The SDRC provides a forum for economists, social and behavioural scientists, geographers, environmental scientists and other academics from across Middlesex University to exchange ideas about how to address the challenges of poverty alleviation, economic development, and biodiversity conservation in a resource-constrained world. By engaging in collaborative research that cuts across disciplines and methodologies, the SDRC aims to produce cutting-edge sustainable development research that will have an impact on teaching, academia and beyond.


If you are interested in joining the SDRC or attending one of our regular meetings, please contact sdrc@mdx.ac.uk or t.ogarra@mdx.ac.uk

  • Featured research

    • Strengthening Knowledge Co-Production in Locally Managed Marine Areas: a Fijian Case Study

      This British Academy-funded study seeks to evaluate the impact of knowledge co-production processes on the success or failure of Locally Managed Marine Areas ('LMMAs') in delivering social and ecological benefits. The project, led by Middlesex University, is an interdisciplinary collaboration between economists, social scientists and marine biologists from Imperial College London, the Fiji LMMA Network, the Wildlife Conservation Society and the University of the South Pacific. The project will run until July 2020.

      Staff involved: Tanya O'Garra

    • Centre for Understanding of Sustainable Prosperity

      The Centre for the Understanding of Sustainable Prosperity (CUSP) is an Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) funded project that will see researchers from Middlesex University’s Centre for Enterprise and Economic Development Research explore alternative business and investment models for sustainability. The research is part of a £6m five-year research grant led by university of Surrey, based on a vision where people can flourish within the ecological constraints of a finite planet. Middlesex Researchers will focus on the roles of social enterprise, circular business models, and green/social investment.

      Staff involved: Geraldine Brennan, Fergus Lyon, Robyn Owen and Ian Vickers

    • Impact Evaluation of a Social Norm Marketing Campaign to Increase Enrolment and Retention Rates and Improve Learning Outcomes in North-West Nigeria

      Dr. Ericka-Rascon Ramirez is leading a World Bank-funded large-scale randomised control trial that aims to increase parental aspirations, self-efficacy beliefs, and improve learning outcomes of 6-9-year-old children in Northern Nigeria. Working closely with the DIME unit of the World Bank, the project entails two interventions where the first one consists of an educational entertainment and the second a digital app intervention. Both interventions will inform policy makers and development partners about effective behavioural interventions to improve learning outcomes in developing countries.

      Staff involved: Ericka Rascon-Ramirez and Tanya O’Garra

    • Rethinking Fashion Design Entrepreneurship: Fostering Sustainable Practices

      Researchers from CEEDR, as part of a cross-university research consortium, have won a grant of close to £450K from the Arts & Humanities Research Council (AHRC) to investigate the role of creative entrepreneurship and design in micro and small fashion enterprises (MSEs) as a potential driver for a more sustainable fashion industry. The research will analyse existing and novel business models and practices in the fashion sector that foster a balance between environmental, social, cultural and economic considerations. The project aims to identify barriers and points of intervention in order to develop alternative business support mechanisms for sustainability to inform fashion businesses at both small and larger scales.

      Staff involved: Andrea Werner, Geraldine Brennan, Fergus Lyon and Ian Vickers

      Read more about this work

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