Lowery Parker, PhD

Lowery has a master’s degree in international policy and a PhD in geography and integrative conservation, both from the University of Georgia. Her research focuses on the politics of agricultural investment in Africa, exploring issues related to philanthropy, genetically modified crops, and food sovereignty. Her interest in food politics stems from a childhood growing up on a family farm in southwest Georgia as well as her experience living in Niger as a Peace Corps volunteer. She has worked on farms and in restaurants committed to building local food systems and has conducted applied research on agricultural issues such as irrigation efficiency and the social effects of large-scale commodity crop production.

Her teaching is based on the premise that addressing “wicked” environmental problems requires the transformation of our food and energy systems, and that this transformation must be based in racial and economic justice. She is interested in facilitating dialogue around “political imaginations,” as seen in cooperative land governance models, racial justice in supply chains, and democratic funding relationships between agricultural producers and philanthropic organizations.

See Dr. Parker’s full list of publications

Courses Taught

Graduate Courses
Global Practicum

Undergraduate Courses
Global Practicum
Development Practice
Politics, Ethics, and Food Security
Getting from Field to Fork

Select Publications

German, L., J. Heppinstall, T. Biggs, L. Parker, and M. Salinas. (2020). The environmental effects of sugarcane expansion: A case study of changes in land and water use in southern Africa. Applied Geography 121: 102240

German, L. and L. Parker. (2019). The social construction of “shared growth”: Zambia Sugar and the uneven terrain of social benefit. Journal of Agrarian Change 19(1): 181-201

Vercoe, R., N. Heynen, R.D. Hardy, J. Demoss, S. Bonney, K. Allen, J.P. Brosius, D. Charles, B. Crawford, S. Heisel, R. de Jesús-Crespo, N. Nibbelink, L. Parker, C. Pringle, A. Shaw, L. Van Sant, M. Welch-Devine. (2014). Acknowledging trade-offs and understanding complexity: Exurbanization issues in Macon County, North Carolina. Ecology and Society 19(1): 23

Research Interests

Soil carbon markets
Food and land justice
Agricultural development/transformation
Pedagogies of solidarity
Politics of philanthropy


  • PhD, Geography and Integrative Conservation, University of Georgia
  • MIP, International Policy, University of Georgia
Lowery Parker, PhD

SIT Study Abroad

Visiting Faculty and Launch Coordinator

IHP Food Systems: Agriculture, Sustainability, and Justice

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SIT Graduate Institute

Affiliated Faculty

MA in Sustainable Development Practice

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Affiliated Faculty

PhD in Sustainability

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