A big welcome to Poul Wisborg

– I am excited to be able to join the academic and social environment at SUM, says Poul Wisborg, who is visiting scholar at SUM this year.

Poul Wisborg

Poul says that he is looking forward to develop his teaching and research, and to enjoy the freedom to learn new things in a stimulating setting.

We are excited to welcome Poul Wisborg from Noragric (NMBU) as a visiting scholar at SUM.

Poul is on a sabbatical leave from his position as Associate Professor at the Department of International Environment and Development Studies, Noragric, at NMBU. For the past five years, Poul has been the Head of Department at Noragric.

Poul grew up in Denmark, and came to Norway at the age of 19 attracted by nature, love and a chance to work in biodynamic farming.

I  sometimes feel, like Obstfelder, stranded on the wrong planet, but SUM has the right mix of perspectives from local to global, from humanities, to social and environmental fields of learning, he says.

Research group on rural transformations

Associate Professor and Research group leader Mariel Aguilar-Støen

While visiting SUM, Poul will contribute to the work of the newly established research group, Rural transformations in the new century.

Joining the research group on Rural Transformations, I was immediately invited into a fascinating PhD course and the researcher network on extractive industries and indigenous people, he says.

The leader of the research group at SUM, Mariel-Aguilar Støen, is looking forward to collaborate with Poul. Poul's work is highly relevant for our research group and he will be participating in all our activities.

We hope that he will become a discussion partner with whom we can continue to have conversations beyond his stay at SUM, says Støen.

Focusing on land rights

Poul has since the 1990s conducted extensive research on human rights, social justice and land rights. In his Post Doc he did research on gender in large-scale land acquisitions in Africa, and he has throughout his career conducted several projects on land reform in South Africa. His main interest currently is the occuring violence against land and human rights defenders.

We see a shocking trend of violence against land and human rights defenders, which I did not envisage some twenty years ago when I first got interested in land as a human rights issue. Maybe I was naïve, but the world has also become a harder place with violence being a systemic feature of capitalist resource capture, says Poul.

During the next year, he will conduct research in South Africa, and pick up the threads from his previous work on land reform and farm labour.

More information

Read about the research group Rural transformations in the new century.

By Charlotte Kildal
Published Sep. 20, 2018 11:26 AM - Last modified Sep. 20, 2018 12:56 PM