Shailaja Fennell is Professor of Regional Transformation and Economic Security, Department of Land Economy, University of Cambridge, and a Fellow of Jesus College. She is currently holding the office of Director, Centre of South Asian Studies within the Consortium of the Global South (bringing together the Centres of African Studies, South Asian Studies, Latin American Studies, Gender Studies, and South Asian Studies) in the School of Humanities and Social Sciences. Her research addresses the relationship between regional transformation and institutional reform processes, focussing on the following arenas: rural-urban transitions and sustainable land use; institutional reform and economic (particularly food) security; and the case for the provision of public goods through development policy.
Her research over the last three decades has been located across Asia and Africa, and has investigated why regional transformation exposes fissures within communities along axes of gender, age, and location, and how they manage themselves and the natural environments that they inhabit. Her research methodology is to build brides within the social sciences, as well as engaging further afield and she has forged collaborations with academics in the physical, biological, and environmental sciences, in the pursuit of quantitative and qualitative methods that are best suited to provide new insights, relevant data, and innovative solutions for sustainable futures. Her most recent edited volume, bringing together scholars across the Global South, is The Handbook of BRICS and Emerging Economics, Oxford University Press (2020).