Photo of Patta Scott-Villiers

Patta Scott-Villiers - Research Fellow

T: +44 (0)1273 915616


Nadine Beard

Thematic Expertise:
Conflict and fragility; Conflict Violence and Development; Gender Justice; Participatory methodologies; Politics and Power; Participation Power and Politics; Unruly Politics.

Geographic Expertise:
Sub Saharan Africa; Ethiopia; Kenya; Somalia; Sudan; Uganda.

I specialise in research from the vantage point of citizens (and non-citizens) of politically marginalised settings. At a more philosophical level, I work on the encounter of epistemologies: the role of difference in generating new understandings between people. Methodologically I specialise in action research and narrative-based qualitative research.

My collaborations with citizen's groups aim to support their efforts to change oppressive conditions; building informed action through research, public conversation and civil organising. Most of my citizen and activist collaborations are in East Africa.

I'm conducting research in Kenya as part of the ESRC-DFID funded project Food Riots and Food Rights.

My research and teaching looks at how claims for social justice are influenced through public conversation and posed in a context of political society, moral economy and power. I am interested to understand how different modes of citizen-led research are useful - or not - to people on the margins. Along with citizen’s groups, I also support masters and PhD students to generate learning from participatory research. My approach is conversational, collaborative and philosophical.

The objective of this research is to improve the prospects for accountability for food security at a time of volatility. This will be achieved through an exploration of the proposition that recent popular mobilisation around food has activated public accountability for hunger.

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The Government of Zambia has initiated a study to look at the affects of the financial crisis on women and children in Zambia.

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Researching the impacts of, and responses to, volatile food prices in poor communities in ten developing countries.

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Promoting a rights perspective to the challenges of poverty, inequality and insecurity.

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Four years on from Irish Aid's landmark Hunger Task Force Report, hunger reduction remains an enormous challenge. This will become more difficult in the context of resource scarcity, climate change, and an increased demand for food in the emerging economies.

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Economic shocks in the form of record rises in food and fuel prices followed by financial crisis and recession have driven home the significance of global economic interdependence for people around the world. These economic crises have confirmed a sense of global connectedness at a time of high concern about the impacts of climate change, epidemics, and conflict.

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How have people and communities experienced recent global economic shocks? In early 2009, the Social Impacts of Crisis project started work in 12 community 'listening posts' in Bangladesh, Indonesia, Jamaica, Kenya, Yemen and Zambia to answer this question.

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ER71 Front Cover

Roots and Routes of Political Violence in Kenya’s Civil and Political Society: A Case Study of Marsabit County

Struggles to influence the balance of power and the distribution of economic resources in Kenya have a long history of violence: national and local, actual and threatened, physical and psychological. More details

IDS publications on international development research

Ekoi and Etem in Karamoja - A Study of Decision-making in a Post-conflict Society

This book presents the findings of a group of young Karimojong who set out to explore land, peace and customary law in the Karamoja sub-region in Uganda. More details

IDS publications on international development research

The Long Conversation: Customary Approaches to Peace Management in Northern Kenya and Southern Ethiopia

This working paper is a contribution to understandings of peace-building among pastoralists. From a pastoralist perspective, it throws light on the achievement of peace in a five-year effort led by leaders of the Borana and Gabra peoples of southern Ethiopia and northern Kenya. More details

IDS Working Paper

Raising Voice: Securing a Livelihood: The Role of Diverse Voices in Developing Secure Livelihoods in Pastoralist Areas in Ethiopia

This paper is concerned with the workings of voice among pastoralists in Ethiopia. It documents how diverse pastoralist men and women - young and old, rich and poor - call on one another and on representatives and officials in efforts to achieve cooperation and influence. More details

IDS Research Summary

Raising Voice: Securing a Livelihood: The Role of Diverse Voices in Developing Secure Livelihoods in Pastoralist Areas in Ethiopia

‘Because of our poverty we are not able to speak. If you have property you have power. If you have power you can talk or voice for yourself. The ones with power talk to each other.’ (elderly Ethiopian pastoralist woman). What are the implications for development practice? More details

IDS publications on international development research

The Puff Adder, the Fire, the Spear, the Peace

Reporting from the Peace Gathering that took place in Maikona, Chalbi District in Kenya in July 2009, this publication documents the discussions held between the Borana and Gabra communities from Ethiopia and Kenya around peace, and how to maintain it. More details

Non-IDS publication

Raising Voice - Securing a Livelihood: Summary Paper

This full-colour summary paper of the recent study into pastoralist livelihoods in Ethiopia discusses the role of diverse voices in developing secure livelihoods in pastoralist areas of Ethiopia. More details

IDS publications on international development research

Participatory Learning Groups in an Aid Bureaucracy

Organisational learning, in which leaders and managers give priority to learning as integral to practice, is increasingly recognized as critical to improved performance. ActionAid, DFID and Sida collaborated with the Participation Group at the Institute of Development Studies to explore understandings of learning and to document innovative approaches. More details

IDS Policy Briefing

The New Dynamics of Aid: Power, Procedures and Relationships

Effective poverty reduction requires narrowing the gap between words and actions, making trust and accountability real within and between organisations, at all levels and between all actors. Aid agencies today are shifting emphasis from projects and service delivery to a language of rights and governance. More details

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