Emeritus Professor Geoffrey Lawrence

Emeritus Professor

School of Social Science
Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences
g.lawrence@uq.edu.au
+61 7 336 53160

Overview

Geoff is a leading Australian sociologist with interests in rural and regional sociology, globalisation/localisation and agrifood research.

He attended James Ruse Agricultural High School in Sydney and was School Captain in 1968. He then completed a degree in agricultural economics at Sydney University in 1972. This was followed by a diploma in social science (UNE), Master of Science in Sociology (Wisconisn-Madison) and a PhD (Griffith). In 1992 he became Associate Professor of Sociology and Foundation Director, Centre for Rural Social Research, at Charles Sturt University before moving later that year to Central Queensland University as Foundation Professor of Sociology (1992-2002) and Executive Director, Institute for Sustainable Regional Development (1998-2002). He joined The University of Queensland as Professor of Sociology and Head of the School of Social Science in 2002. He is a Life Member of the Fitzroy Basin Association, a Fellow of the Academy of Social Sciences in Australia, Life Member of the Australian Sociological Association, and was President of the International Rural Sociology Association (2012-2016). He became Emeritus Professor of Sociology at the University of Queensland in 2014.

Research Interests

  • Agriculture, the Environment and the Politics of Sustainability
    The questions are: To what extent is 'greening' and green politics influencing the course of agricultural development and resulting in policies aimed at reducing ecological destruction? What is the nature of the debates and theorisations regarding productivism/post-productivism in the rural landscapes of advance economies? In a practical sense, how is it possible to ensure that current and future natural resource management will provide sustainable outcomes for society?
  • Globalisation, Localisation and Restructuring of Regional Australia
    This is a broad area whcih includes an examination of the social affects of economic change upon regions and highlights town decline, poverty, unemployment and ill-health - as well as the 'ingredients' for successful community development and the enhancement of social capital. Issues of empowerment and governance are crucial to the understanding of the future of the regions. The issue of global/local relations is also of significance - particularly as Australian governments seek to promote 'self help' and 'partnership' options.
  • Financialisation of Food and Farming
    Finance capital is playing an increasingly important role in food and farming industries. Entities like merchant banks, sovereign wealth funds, private equity firms and hedge funds are purchasing farmlands and agribusinesses in an effort to increase returns to shareholders. However, some of these activities are speculative and lead to food price distortions; others impact upon traditional owners when so-called 'land grabs' force producers from their farms. 'Financialisation' is seen as being as important as globalisation and neoliberalism in altering the face of food and farming.

Qualifications

  • Doctor of Philosophy, Griffith University
  • Bachelor of Science in Agriculture, The University of Sydney
  • Diploma in Social Science, University of New England
  • Master of Science, University of Wisconsin

Publications

  • Smith, Kiah and Lawrence, Geoffrey (2018). From disaster management to adaptive governance? Governance challenges to achieving resilient food systems in Australia. Journal of Environmental Policy and Planning, 20 (3), 387-401. doi: 10.1080/1523908X.2018.1432344

  • Bjorkhaug, Hilde , Magnan, Andre and Lawrence, Geoffrey (2018). Introduction: The Financialization of Agri-food. The Financialization of Agri-food Systems. (pp. 1-19) edited by Hilde Bjorkhaug, Andre Magnan and Geoffrey Lawrence. London, United Kingdom: Routledge.

  • Bjørkhaug, Hilde, Magnan, André and Lawrence, Geoffrey (2018). Introduction: the financialization of agri-food. The Financialization of Agri-Food Systems: Contested Transformations. (pp. 1-19) edited by Hilde Bjorkhaug, Andre Magnan and Geoffrey Lawrence. Abingdon, Oxon, United Kingdom: Routledge. doi: 10.4324/9781315157887-1

View all Publications

Available Projects

  • Structural change in agriculture; changes power relations along agri-food chains; the financialisation of food and farming.

View all Available Projects

Publications

Book

Book Chapter

  • Bjorkhaug, Hilde , Magnan, Andre and Lawrence, Geoffrey (2018). Introduction: The Financialization of Agri-food. The Financialization of Agri-food Systems. (pp. 1-19) edited by Hilde Bjorkhaug, Andre Magnan and Geoffrey Lawrence. London, United Kingdom: Routledge.

  • Bjørkhaug, Hilde, Magnan, André and Lawrence, Geoffrey (2018). Introduction: the financialization of agri-food. The Financialization of Agri-Food Systems: Contested Transformations. (pp. 1-19) edited by Hilde Bjorkhaug, Andre Magnan and Geoffrey Lawrence. Abingdon, Oxon, United Kingdom: Routledge. doi: 10.4324/9781315157887-1

  • Lawrence, Geoffrey and Smith, Kiah (2018). The concept of 'financialization': Criticisms and insights. The Financialization of Agri-food Systems: Contested Transformations. (pp. 23-41) edited by Hilde Bjorkhaug, Andre Magnan and Geoffrey Lawrence. London, United Kingdom: Routledge. doi: 10.4324/9781315157887-2

  • Sippel, Sarah Ruth, Lawrence, Geoffrey and Burch, David (2017). The financialization of farming: the Hancock Company of Canada and its embedding in rural Australia. Transforming the rural: global processes and local futures. (pp. 3-23) edited by Terry Marsden, Mara Miele, Vaughan Higgins, Hilde Bjørkhaug and Monica Truninger. London, United Kingdom: Emerald Insight.

  • Lawrence, Geoffrey (2016). Food systems and land: connections and contradictions. Routledge international handbook of rural studies. (pp. 183-191) edited by Mark Shucksmith and David L. Brown. London, United Kingdom: Routledge.

  • Lawrence, Geoffrey, Sippel, Sarah Ruth and Burch, David (2015). The financialisation of food and farming. Handbook on the globalization of agriculture. (pp. 309-327) edited by Guy Robinson and Doris Carson. Cheltenham, United Kingdom: Edward Elgar. doi: 10.4337/9780857939838

  • Lawrence, Geoffrey and Dixon, Jane (2015). The political economy of agri-food: supermarkets. Handbook of the International Political Economy of Agriculture and Food. (pp. 213-231) edited by Alessandro Bonanno and Lawrence Busch. Cheltenham, Glos, UK: Edward Elgar Publishing. doi: 10.4337/9781782548263.00019

  • Lawrence, Geoffrey and McMichael, Philip (2014). Global change and food security: introduction. Global environmental change. (pp. 667-676) edited by Bill Freedman. Dordrecht, Netherlands: Springer Netherlands. doi: 10.1007/978-94-007-5784-4_114

  • Lawrence, Geoffrey and Campbell, Hugh (2014). Neoliberalism in the antipodes: understanding the influence and limits of the neoliberal political project. The Neoliberal Regime in Agri-food: Crisis, Resilience and Restructuring. (pp. 263-283) edited by Steven A. Wolfe and Alessandro Bonanno. Abingdon, Oxon, England: Routledge. doi: 10.4324/9780203583111

  • Lawrence, Geoffrey, Richards, Carol and Burch, David (2013). The impacts of climate change on Australia's food production and export. Food security in Australia: challenges and prospects for the future. (pp. 173-186) edited by Quentin Farmer-Bowers, Vaughan Higgins and Joanne Millar. New York, NY, United States: Springer. doi: 10.1007/978-1-4614-4484-8_12

  • Lawrence, Geoffrey, Richards, Carol, Gray, Ian and Hansar, Naomi (2012). Climate change and the resilience of commodity food production in Australia. Food systems failure: The global food crisis and the future of agriculture. (pp. 131-146) edited by Christopher Rosin, Paul Stock and Hugh Campbell. London, U.K.: Earthscan. doi: 10.4324/9781849776820

  • Carl, John D. and Lawrence, Geoffrey (2012). Environmental sustainability and social movements: how do societies connect with nature?. Think sociology. (pp. 244-267) edited by John D. Carl, Sarah Baker, Brady Robards, John Scott, Wendy Hillman and Geoffrey Lawrence. Frenchs Forest, NSW, Australia: Pearson Australia.

  • Carl, John D. and Lawrence, Geoffrey (2012). Globalisation: the economy and society. Think sociology. (pp. 186-206) edited by John D. Carl, Sarah Baker, Brady Robards, John Scott, Wendy Hillman and Geoffrey Lawrence. Frenchs Forest, NSW, Australia: Pearson Australia.

  • Lawrence, Geoffrey and Cheshire, Lynda (2012). Queensland towns. Sociology: Antipodean perspectives. (pp. 133-143) edited by Peter Beiharz and Trevor Hogan. South Melbourne, VIC, Australia: Oxford University Press.

  • Lawrence, Geoffrey and Cheshire, Lynda (2012). Regions. Sociology: antipodean perspectives. (pp. 31-37) edited by Peter Beiharz and Trevor Hogan. South Melbourne, VIC, Australia: Oxford University Press.

  • Kingsford, Richard and Lawrence, Geoff (2011). Peter Cullen: chair of the Lake Eyre Basin Scientific Advisory Panel. This land our water: water challenges for the 21st century. A collection of papers by Peter Cullen. (pp. 36-39) edited by Vicky Cullen. Hindmarsh, SA, Australia: ATF Press.

  • Lawrence, Geoffrey, Lyons, Kristen and Wallington, Tabatha (2010). Introduction: Food security, nutrition and sustainability in a globalised world. Food security, nutrition and sustainability. (pp. 1-23) edited by Geoffrey Lawrence, Kristen Lyons and Tabatha Wallington. London, U.K. ; Sterling, VA, U.S.A.: Earthscan. doi: 10.4324/9781849774499

  • Burch, David and Lawrence, Geoffrey (2010). The "Wellness" phenomenon: Implications for global agri-food systems. Food security, nutrition and sustainability. (pp. 175-187) edited by Lawrence, Geoffrey, Lyons, Kristen and Wallington, Tabatha. London, U.K. ; Sterling, VA, U.S.A.: Earthscan. doi: 10.4324/9781849774499

  • Lawrence, Geoffrey, Miller, Toby and Rowe, David (2010). The new international division of cultural labor and sport. Sport and migration : Borders, boundaries and crossings. (pp. 217-229) edited by Joseph Maguire and Mark Falcous. Abbingdon, Oxon, U.K.: Routledge. doi: 10.4324/9780203877319

  • Wallington, Tabatha and Lawrence, Geoffrey (2009). Accounting for performance: Public environmental governance in the shadow of the future. Contested Country. (pp. 91-107) edited by Marcus Lane, Cathy Robinson and Bruce Taylor. Australia: CSIRO Publishing.

  • Gray, Ian, Lawrence, Geoffrey and Sinclair, Peter (2009). The sociology of climate change for regional Australia: Considering farmer capacity for change. Climate change in regional Australia: Social learning and adaptation. (pp. 136-158) edited by J. Martin, M. Rogers and C. Winter. Victoria, Australia: VURRN Press.

  • Lawrence, Geoffrey and Grice, Janet (2008). Agribusiness, Genetic Engineering and the Corporatisation of Food. A Sociology of Food & Nutrition: The Social Appetite. (pp. 78-99) edited by John Germov and Lauren Williams. Melbourne, VIC, Australia: Oxford University Press.

  • Cheshire, L., Higgins, V. and Lawrence, G. (2007). Introduction: Governing the rural. Rural Governance: International Perspectives. (pp. 1-18) edited by L. Cheshire, V. Higgins and G. Lawrence. London, United Kingdom: Routledge.

  • Lawrence, G. and Everingham, J. (2007). Regionalism. Oxford Companion to Australian Politics. (pp. 501-503) edited by Galligan, B. and Roberts, W.. Melbourne: Oxford University Press.

  • Cheshire, Lynda, Higgins, Vaughan and Lawrence, Geoffrey (2007). Rural governance and power relations: Theorising the complexity of state-citizen interactions. Rural governance: International perspectives. (pp. 291-303) edited by L. Cheshire, V. Higgins and G. Lawrence. London, United Kingdom: Routledge. doi: 10.4324/9780203968178

  • Burch, D. and Lawrence, G. (2007). Supermarkets Own Brands, New Foods and the Reconfiguration of Agri-food Supply Chains. Supermarkets and Agri-food Supply Chains: Transformations in the Production and Consumption of Foods. (pp. 100-128) edited by Burch, D. and Lawrence, G.. Cheltenham, UK: Edward Elgar.

  • Lawrence, G. and Burch, D. (2007). Understanding Supermarkets and Agri-food Supply Chains. Supermarkets and Agri-food Supply Chains: Transformations in the Production and Consumption of Foods. (pp. 1-26) edited by Burch, D. and Lawrence, G.. Cheltenham, UK: Edward Elgar.

  • Campbell, Hugh, Lawrence, Geofffrey and Smith, Kiah (2006). Audit Cultures and the Antipodes: The Implications of EurepGAP for New Zealand and Australian Agri-food Industries. Between the Local and the Global: confronting complexity in the contemporary Agri-food sector. (pp. 69-94) edited by T. Marsden and J. Murdoch. Oxford, England: Elsevier. doi: 10.1016/S1057-1922(06)12004-1

  • Grice, Janet and Lawrence, Geoffrey (2006). Promovarea dezvoltarii durabile: Problematica guvernarii. Catalyse: Cunoastere, participare, si dezvoltare in spatiu comunitar. (pp. 15-45) edited by Mihai Pascaru. Cluj-Napoca, Romania: Editura Argonaut.

  • Lawrence, G A and Cheshire, L A (2006). Queensland Towns. Sociology: Place, Time and Division. (pp. 107-111) edited by P. Beilharz and T. Hogan. Melbourne, Australia: Oxford University Press.

  • Lockie, Stewart, Lawrence, Geoffrey and Cheshire, Lynda (2006). Reconfiguring rural resource governance: The legacy of neoliberalism in Australia. Handbook of Rural Studies. (pp. 29-43) edited by P. Cloke, T. Marsden and P. Mooney. London: Sage. doi: 10.4135/9781848608016.n3

  • Lawrence, G A and Cheshire, L A (2006). Regions. Sociology: Place, Time and Division. (pp. 20-25) edited by P. Beilharz and T. Hogan. Melbourne, Australia: Oxford University Press.

  • Burch, D., Lyons, K. and Lawrence, G. (2006). What do we mean by green? Consumers, agriculture and the food industry. Rikka rokassa vai sattumia sopassa? Johdatus yhteiskuntatieteelliseen maatalous-ja elintarviketutkimukseen. (pp. 69-87) Helsinki, Finland: University of Joensuu, Karelian Institute.

  • Lawrence, Geoffrey (2005). Globalisation, agricultural production systems and rural restructuring. Sustainability and change in rural Australia. (pp. 104-120) edited by Chris Cocklin and Jacqui Dibden. Sydney: New South Wales University Press.

  • Higgins, V. and Lawrence, G. A. (2005). Introduction: Globalization and Agricultural Governance. Agricultural Governance: Globalization and the New Politics of Regulation. (pp. 1-15) edited by V. Higgins and G. Lawrence. London: Routledge. doi: 10.4324/9780203698907

  • Lawrence, Geoffrey (2005). Promoting Sustainable Development: The Question of Governance. New directions in the sociology of global development. (pp. 145-174) edited by Frederick H. Buttel and Philip McMichael. Amsterdam, The Netherlands: Elsevier.

  • Cheshire, L. A. and Lawrence, G. A. (2005). Reshaping the State: Global/local networks in association and the governing of agricultural production.. Agricultural Governance: Globalization and the New Politics of Regulation. (pp. 35-49) edited by V. Higgins and G. Lawrence. London: Routledge.

  • Lawrence, Geoffrey and Grice, Janet (2004). Agribusiness, biotechnology and food. A sociology of food and nutrition : the social appetite. (pp. 77-95) edited by John Germov and Lauren Williams. South Melbourne, Australia: Oxford University Press.

  • Lawrence, G. A., Cheshire, L. A. and Richards, C. A. (2004). Agricultural production and the ecological question. Controversies in environmental sociology. (pp. 221-237) edited by R. White. Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press. doi: 10.1017/CBO9780511804434.014

  • Lyons, K., Lockie, S. and Lawrence, G. A. (2004). Consumer views of organic and GM food. Recoding Nature: Critical Perspectives on Genetic Engineering. (pp. 94-107) edited by R. HIndmarsh and G. Lawrence. Sydney: UNSW Press.

  • Lyons, K., Burch, D., Lawrence, G. A. and Lockie, S. (2004). Contrasting paths of corporate greening in Antipodean agriculture: Organics and green production. Agribusiness and society: Corporate responses to environmentalism, market opportunities and public regulation. (pp. 91-113) edited by K. Jansen and S. Vellema. London: Zed Books.

  • Richards, Carol, Lawrence, Geoff and Cheshire, Lynda (2004). Environmental sustainability in the beef grazing sector of Central Queensland: What helps, what hinders?. Social innovations in natural resources management handbook. (pp. 65-67) edited by Carol Richards and Lyn Aitken. Brisbane, Australia: Department of Natural Resources & Mines.

  • Lawrence, G. A. (2004). Foreword. Social Innovations in Natural Resource Management Handbook. (pp. i-ii) edited by C. Richards and L. Atikens. Qld: Dept Natural Resources & MInes, Qld.

  • Hindmarsh, R. and Lawrence, G. A. (2004). Recoding nature: Deciphering the scripts. Recoding Nature: Critical Perspectives on Genetic Engineering. (pp. 23-41) edited by R. HIndmarsh and G. Lawrence. Sydney: UNSW Press.

  • Miller, T., Lawrence, G. A., Mckay, J. and Rowe, D. (2004). Sports media sans frontieres. Critical Readings: Sport, Culture and the Media. (pp. 84-98) edited by D. Rowe. Maidenhead, UK: Open University Press, McGraw Hill.

  • Lawrence, G. A. and Cheshire, L. A. (2004). The social consequences of the rural reform agenda. The Politics of Australian Society: Political Issues for the New Century. (pp. 338-356) edited by P. Boreham, G. Stokes and R. Hall. Frenchs Forest, NSW: Pearson Longman.

  • Campbell, H. and Lawrence, G. A. (2003). Assessing the neoliberal experiment in Antipodean agriculture. Globalization, Localization and Sustainable Livelihoods. (pp. 89-101) edited by R. Almas and G. Lawrence. Aldershot, England: Ashgate. doi: 10.4324/9781315194240

  • Almas, R. and Lawrence, G. A. (2003). Introduction: The global/local problematic. Globalization, Localization and Sustainable Livelihoods. (pp. 3-24) edited by R. Almas and G. Lawrence. Aldershot: Ashgate.

  • Cheshire, L. A. and Lawrence, G. A. (2003). Monto, Queensland. Community Sustainability in Rural Australia: A Question of Capital?. (pp. 10-37) edited by C. Cocklin and M. Alston. Wagga Wagga: Centre for Rural Res., Charles Sturt Univ.

  • Lockie, S., Herbert-Cheshire, L. A. and Lawrence, G. A. (2003). Rural sociology. The Cambridge Handbook of Social Sciences in Australia. (pp. 604-625) edited by Ian McAllister, Steve Dowrick and Riaz Hassan. Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press.

  • Hindmarsh, R. A. and Lawrence, G. (2001). Bio-utopia: Future Natural?. Altered Genes II: The Future?. (pp. 11-35) edited by R. Hindmarsh and G. Lawrence. Melbourne: Scribe Publications.

  • McKay, J., Lawrence, G., Miller, T. and Rowe, D. (2001). Gender equality, hegemonic masculinity and the governmentalisation of Australian amateur sport. Culture in Australia. (pp. 233-251) edited by Bennett, T. and Carter, D.. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

  • Lyons, Kristen and Lawrence, Geoffrey (2001). Institutionalisation and resistance – organic agriculture in Australia and New Zealand. Food, nature and society: rural life in late modernity. (pp. 124-147) edited by Hilary Tovey and Michel Blanc. Aldershot: Ashgate.

  • Burch, David, Lyons, Kristen and Lawrence, Geoffrey (2001). What do we mean by green? Consumers, agriculture and the food industry. Consuming foods, sustaining environments. (pp. 45-68) Bowen Hills, Qld: Australian Academic Press.

  • Hughson, J., Lawrence, G. W., McKay, J. and Rowe, D. (2000). Sport and Australian society. A Sociology of Australian Society. (pp. 275-300) Melbourne: MacMillan.

Journal Article

Conference Publication

Edited Outputs

Other Outputs

Grants (Administered at UQ)

PhD and MPhil Supervision

Current Supervision

  • Doctor Philosophy — Associate Advisor

    Other advisors:

Completed Supervision

Possible Research Projects

Note for students: The possible research projects listed on this page may not be comprehensive or up to date. Always feel free to contact the staff for more information, and also with your own research ideas.

  • Structural change in agriculture; changes power relations along agri-food chains; the financialisation of food and farming.