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Blueprints for rural economy: Philip Lowe's work in rural and environmental social science

Lookup NU author(s): Professor Neil Ward, Professor Jeremy Phillipson



This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License (CC BY-NC-ND).


Philip Lowe died in February 2020, and so an academic career spanning five decades in environmental and rural social science and the sociology of knowledge came to an end. A pioneer of the social science of environmentalism since the early 1990s, Philip Lowe had been closely associated with the Centre for Rural Economy at Newcastle University in the UK and had been the intellectual force behind establishing rural economy as both a subject and mode of social science analysis. This article reflects on a career and the evolving concept of ‘rural economy’ as an economic form, a policy realm and a knowledge practice. Through this history, it presents an account of the contribution of Philip Lowe's research and writing that, as a result of his death, now stands as a bounded and complete body of work for the benefit of future generations of scholars.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Ward N, Phillipson J

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Sociologia Ruralis

Year: 2021

Volume: 61

Issue: 4

Pages: 723-742

Print publication date: 31/10/2021

Online publication date: 05/05/2021

Acceptance date: 26/02/2021

Date deposited: 19/07/2021

ISSN (print): 0038-0199

ISSN (electronic): 1467-9523

Publisher: Wiley-Blackwell Publishing Ltd.


DOI: 10.1111/soru.12349


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