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Marie Widengård

Researcher

School of Global
Studies
Visiting address
Konstepidemins väg 2
41314 Göteborg
Postal address
Box 700
40530 Göteborg

About Marie Widengård

I am currently researching Swedish visions of fossil-free fuels, specifically how a fair transition to liquid biofuels can be achieved, in Sweden and transnationally. Link to the project 'Just Biofuels'. Link to the project on the Bioeconomy and how this plays out in the Swedish forest is found here.

I teach around various ‘green’ themes, such as natural resources, environmental politics and movements, sustainable development, sustainability standardization and certification, gender and ecofeminism, and more broadly, environmental social science theories and methods and research design.

My PhD work focused on the theme of biofuels, and I examined some of the processes, discourses, materialities, technologies, and relationships involved in the production of biofuel crop Jatropha curcas L. I approached production as an assembling of components that are both material and social, and I looked at the work needed to maintain and/or dismantle biofuel resources. Taking an ethnographic and multi-sited approach, I approached biofuels as a project in-the-making, in, and across, various sites, including Zambia, sub-Saharan Africa, the European Union, and worldwide. I took use of biofuels’ novelty and ‘becomingness’ to render strange more familiar notions, to generate an analytics of how political ecologies and political economies are becoming, and to provide deeper insights into what resources, sustainability, poverty, land, and nation-states actually are. This approach suggested that the production of biofuels is complex and ‘messy’, and that outcomes for societies and ecologies are of an uncertain and ambiguous nature.

Previous to my PhD work, I worked four years in non-governmental organisations in sub-Saharan Africa. My university studies include law, environmental and water engineering, participatory research, and rural development. My master theses investigated the theme of participatory plant breeding and intellectual property rights of plants and genes, with field work in Nicaragua. I have consulted in sustainability standard development and certification application (ISO and RSB), and conducted evaluations and scientific literature reviews.