Photo of Kanchana N. Rawanpura

New professor in Human Geography with focus on uneven development, research ethics and feminist politics


Kanchana N. Ruwanpura is a new Professor that recently joined Human Geography. Previously she was a Reader at the Institute of Geography, University of Edinburgh. Her focus areas for both research and teaching are uneven development, environmental debates, research ethics and feminist politics.

Ruwanpura most recently (2019-20) held a Humboldt Fellowship at the University of Gottingen, Germany and was the France-ILO (International Labour Organisation) Chair Fellow at the Institute of Advanced Studies, Nantes, France. She is currently finalising a book manuscript entitled Garments without Guilt? Global Labour Justice and Ethical Codes in Sri Lankan Apparels, which will be published by Cambridge University Press; and hopes to devote her attention to teaching on courses around uneven development and globalisation, research ethics and feminist politics and the workplace.

I am excited to be joining a group of Human Geographers and be located amongst social scientists more broadly within the University of Gothenburg. To be in a place where there is a nuanced approach towards gender equity, and where the social compact both within and outside of the workplace is treated earnestly is likely to be rewarding.

It will also be enjoyable to work together with a group of development geographers, including those that work on Sri Lanka, both within Human Geography and also at the School of Global Studies. I look forward to becoming part of the University of Gothenburg and learning about Swedish culture and its respect towards the environment, feminist concerns and egalitarian politics.

About Kanchana N. Ruwanpura

A British-Sri Lankan by citizenship, Kanchana was born and grew up in Colombo, Sri Lanka. Much of her research has focused on her native country and the South Asian region more broadly. Until recently, she was a Reader at the Institute of Geography, University of Edinburgh, where she also served as the Programme Director for the MSc in Environment and Development (2015-2019) and served as one of two Directors at the Centre for South Asian Studies (2014-2018). Since completing her PhD at Newnham College, University of Cambridge, she has worked at the University of Southampton (UK), Hobart & William Smith Colleges (USA), University of Munich (Germany) and the International Labour Office (Switzerland).