In the middle of applying to universities? | SHARE YOUR EXPERIENCE In the middle of applying to universities? | SHARE YOUR EXPERIENCE

Cultivating hope from the finance-land-food nexus: working relations and the 'value' of land in 21st century Scotland

   Business School

This project is no longer listed on and may not be available.

Click here to search for PhD studentship opportunities
  Dr Brian Garvey, Mr Malcolm Combe  No more applications being accepted  Funded PhD Project (Students Worldwide)

About the Project


This PhD study investigates if and how corporate land grabbing, most commonly associated by new enclosures in Global South, is changing agricultural land value, use and ownership in UK and Europe as a whole. The project explores how tensions in the finance-food-labour nexus create or constrain new opportunities for working the land towards sustaining food production and meaningful livelihoods.

Project Details

This project cultivates a new nexus between the globalised financialisation of agricultural commodities, food insecurity and agricultural labour. These dimensions come to ground, literally, in arable land that has been an increasingly prized destination for corporate finance; with subsequent rising land prices and a deepening of contestation between commodity and food production. Land prices rose some 56% in parts of the UK last year and there has been a 350% increase in Scottish arable land prices in the last two decades alongside a reduction in cultivable area. This is further complicated by Scotland’s opaque land ownership structure. Meanwhile, the UN concedes that progress on the eradication of hunger is poor and deteriorating while the UK faces further disruption to food supply chains and agricultural (migrant) labour markets from both pandemic and Brexit. The situation invites new research that goes beyond an analysis of the complex relations between finance, land and food production to consider the transparency and reform of land dealings, and to unearth new meanings, initiatives and working relations with land towards sustaining rural and urban livelihoods in Scotland.


Candidates should possess a first-class or upper second-class UK Honours degree, or overseas equivalent, in a relevant business, law, policy or social science related subject. A Masters degree, or overseas equivalent, is also desired, although there are often exceptions. Strathclyde Business School is committed to supporting a diverse and inclusive postgraduate research population, and where independent research experience, professional and life experience is demonstrated, applicants with a lower degree classification will be considered.

Funding Notes

Fully-funded scholarship for three years covers all university tuition fees (at UK level) and an annual tax-free stipend. International students are also eligible to apply, but they will need to find other funding sources to cover the difference between the home and international tuition fees. Exceptional international candidates may be provided funding for this difference.
PhD saved successfully
View saved PhDs