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    Paula is a Leverhulme ECR Fellow located within the Centre for Human Animal Studies at Edge Hill University.

    Her three-year project ‘The visual consumption of animals: challenging persistent binaries’ aims to support transformational change in the way humans conceive and interact with nature. Focusing on zoos, racecourses (horses and greyhounds), and agricultural or county shows as sites where such visual consumption is routinized, the project will use qualitative research methods to:

    1. Examine the mechanisms by which the constitution of othered ‘natures’ as resources for visual consumption is normalised and made mundane, and
    2. Challenge human-nature binaries in ways that are still largely non-existent in non-/post-/more-than-human conceptions and evaluations of associated relations.

    More information on project stages and progress can be accessed here.

    Paula has an interdisciplinary background, encompassing both quantitative and qualitative approaches and methods. Her research focuses on understanding how both societal change and stability are constituted, particularly as these relate to climate and environmental change, the appropriation of nature, and the exploitation of nonhuman animals. Understanding how to challenge habitual ways of thinking and acting about nonhuman animals are a central focus of her research.

    Previous work

    Prior to joining Edge Hill, Paula worked for 10 years at RMIT University in Melbourne, Australia, first as part of a multi-disciplinary research institute (Centre for Design) focused on climate change adaption and mitigation, and then undertaking a PhD in Sociology which she completed in 2018. Before this, she spent four years as a project and campaign manager with ICLEI Oceania, an international not-for-profit local government association working towards reducing greenhouse gas emissions and water use as well as adaptation to climate change, also based in Melbourne.


    Paula’s first book Making Sense of ‘Food’ Animals: A Critical Exploration of the Persistence of Meat was published by Palgrave in 2020. She has authored and contributed to publications on a range of topics including climate change and health, energy and water consumption, technology use, waste, and meat production and consumption. Her primary interest is challenging normalized uses of nonhuman animals through politically engaged research that draws on a range of theoretical and methodological approaches, including critical theory, gender studies, intersectionality, social practices, cultural studies, posthumanism, multispecies ethnography, anarchist praxis, speculative fiction, ethology, and environmental science.

    Expertise related to UN Sustainable Development Goals

    In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This person’s work contributes towards the following SDG(s):

    • SDG 2 - Zero Hunger
    • SDG 3 - Good Health and Well-being
    • SDG 7 - Affordable and Clean Energy
    • SDG 11 - Sustainable Cities and Communities
    • SDG 12 - Responsible Consumption and Production
    • SDG 13 - Climate Action
    • SDG 15 - Life on Land
    • SDG 16 - Peace, Justice and Strong Institutions

    Education/Academic qualification

    Sociology, PhD, RMIT University

    5 Mar 201315 Oct 2018

    Award Date: 15 Oct 2018

    Environmental Science, MA, Monash University

    Jun 2002Feb 2005

    Award Date: 13 Oct 2005

    Geography and Environmental Science, MA, University of Edinburgh


    Award Date: 12 Jul 1990

    Geography and Environmental Science, BA, University of Edinburgh


    Award Date: 4 Sep 1989

    Other positions

    Research Officer, RMIT University

    Jul 2018Oct 2019

    Casual Research Assistant, RMIT University

    Mar 2013Jun 2018

    Researcher, RMIT University

    Nov 2009Mar 2013

    Campaign and Project Manager, ICLEI Oceania

    Nov 2005Jul 2009

    Casual Research Assistant, Monash University

    Mar 2002Oct 2005

    Jewellery designer and silversmith, Curtis Jewellers

    Apr 2001Feb 2002

    Voluntary Research Assistant (Climate Modelling), CSIRO

    Jan 2001Mar 2001


    • H Social Sciences
    • Animals
    • Critical Animal Studies
    • Social practice theories
    • Consumption
    • Cultural Studies
    • Foucault
    • Critical theory
    • Discourse analysis
    • G Geography. Anthropology. Recreation
    • Human geography
    • Climate change
    • Environmental science
    • Sustainability

    Research Centres

    • Centre for Human Animal Studies


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