Social Theory and Spatial Praxis

The Social Theory and Spatial Praxis (STSP) Research Group focuses on relationships between the social and the spatial and the ways in which research can make a difference to academic knowledge, research participants and wider society.

Established in 2005 to reflect and support the research interests of a growing number of staff and postgraduate students, the STSP Research Group includes researchers working in Human Geography, Development Studies and Environmental Studies - and reflects a range of theoretical and methodological perspectives. Through 'critical geographies' from Aotearoa New Zealand and around the world, we seek to actively engage and challenge dominant discourses within our disciplines.

Our work commonly centres on:

  • An engagement with various forms of social theory and critical theory;
  • Relationships between subjectivities and identities, and the places and spaces in, and through, which these are performed;
  • The development, adaptation and application of qualitative, participatory, Indigenous and visual action-oriented approaches;
  • A commitment to theoretically-informed activist geographies with both mainstream and hard-to-reach groups.

Through research colloquia, workshops and seminars and within a friendly, encouraging and supportive environment, we act as a home and resource base for those interested in these perspectives from within and beyond the context of Aotearoa New Zealand. We welcome scholars, practitioners, students, activists and artists as visitors and research collaborators, and are eager to nurture spaces of learning, reflection and cooperation.