Chris Flower


Thesis Title: “On its last legs? Pastoralism in the drought-affected drylands of Afar, Ethiopia”
Supervisor: Dr Chasca Twyman, Dr Daniel Hammett and Professor Dan Brockington
Funding: ESRC White Rose Collaborative Award Studentship

Project Description

My PhD evaluates how differential shifts in livelihood affect pastoralist and agropastoralist communities in the remote drylands of Afar, Ethiopia. Living in a context of growing vulnerability to climate change, food insecurity and competition over land and natural resources the project analyses the social justice impacts of pastoral resilience, policy formulation and development practice.


The project is collaborative with the International Land Coalition (ILC), forming part of its Global Rangelands Initiative. Fieldwork was facilitated by the International Livestock Research Institute (ILRI).

Wider Research Interests

  • Sustainable livelihoods
  • Climate resilience
  • Social justice and inclusive development
  • Participatory research techniques


I have teaching and marking experience at undergraduate levels 1 & 2.


  • Sheffield Institute for International Development (SIID) Annual Conference, March 2015 (co-organiser)
  • Royal Geographical Society (RGS) Midterm Conference, March 2015 (presenter, panel chair)
  • Global Land Forum, Dakar, Senegal, May 2015 (delegate)
Education and Experience

Previous Education

MA International Development,
The University of Sheffield (2011-2012)
Dissertation: Women’s Land Rights: Exploring a Multi-Level Governance Approach
BA Geography and Sociology,
The University of Sheffield (2008-2011)
Dissertation: Poverty Perceptions and Support Appropriateness: A Case Study Into Contextual Rural Poverty In Himo Village, Tanzania

Previous Experience

Prior to undertaking my doctoral studies – and since obtaining an MA and First Class degree from the University of Sheffield – I worked in both the private and public international development spheres. First, for the International Land Coalition (ILC), based in the UN’s International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) in Rome, before becoming a proposal writer and project manager for DAI.