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Personal profile

Research Statement

Dr Amanda Slevin is a social scientist, educator and researcher who researches, teaches and writes about some of the most pressing challenges facing our socio-ecological world. Interdisciplinary in orientation, Amanda's research centres on complex society-environment interactions and she is skilled in qualitative and mixed methods research. Her cutting-edge, policy-engaged research focuses on important issues such as anthropogenic climate change; multi-level climate action; social inequalities, energy conflicts and just transition; sustainability praxis; policy frameworks, decision-making and practices surrounding climate action and hydrocarbon extraction; ideology and resource management; transformative pedagogy; community activism; community and stakeholder participation in decision-making and multi-level climate action.

Co-Director of QUB's Centre for Sustainability, Equality and Climate Action, Amanda initiated and co-convenes QUB's first Faculty AHSS interdisciplinary module on sustainability and climate breakdown ('What is to be done? Sustainability, climate change and just energy transitions in the Anthropocene', PAI 1010). Amanda works as Policy Fellow with the Place-based Climate Action Network (PCAN), School of History, Anthropology, Philosophy and Politics. Through her role with the UK-wide, ESRC-funded PCAN, Amanda co-established and supports development of Belfast Climate Commission and its working groups (she founded and chairs the Commission's Community Climate Action Working Group); she also collaborates with PCAN colleagues in Leeds, London and Edinburgh in order to translate climate policy into action across multiple levels of society.  

As Chair of Climate Coalition Northern Ireland, Amanda plays a leading role in advancing multi-level climate action across Northern Ireland via development work on NI's first Climate Change Bill and engagement with key stakeholders. In tandem with the aforementioned work, Amanda is Principal Investigator for 'Mapping Community Climate Action' (participatory action research on community climate action in the Belfast City Region, co-developed with Community Climate Action Working Group members), 'Pathways for Sustainability' (qualitative research with QUB staff and students on QUB teaching and learning on the Sustainable Development Goals, Co-Investigators are Prof. John Barry and Dr Colin McClure), and 'Creating our Vision for a Greener Future' (a staff-student collaboration focused on using arts-based methods to engage members of the public around climate breakdown, sustainability and just transition).

Amanda's Irish Research Council funded PhD research (2009-2013, UCD) was the first academic study of Irish state hydrocarbon extraction and its consequences for communities and wider society, culminating in her monograph Gas, oil and the Irish state: Understanding the dynamics and conflicts of hydrocarbon management (2016, 2017, Manchester University Press), other publications and policy-engaged outputs such as expert advice to Oireachtas Committees.

Amanda's work is underpinned by best practice in research, teaching, curriculum development, supervision and administration. Her professional background in community development, adult and community education influences her academic career, evident in her interest in sustainability praxis and wide-ranging efforts as a public intellectual who undertakes policy-engaged research and myriad approaches to communicating scientific research across wider society. Hand in hand with traditional research dissemination activities (e.g. books, journal articles, conference papers), she regularly organises, co-organises and participates in community engagement events, writes accessible articles, engages in public debate on socio-ecological issues via contributions to policy development and media interviews, and collaborates with diverse civil society partners and stakeholders. 

Amanda's research goes beyond academic analysis to informing empirical pathways for a just transition to fairer, healthier and more sustainable societies and is in line with the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals, notably SDGs 7, 10, 11, 12 and 13, and QUB’s new Strategy 2030. She is Series Editor for 'Socio-ecological crises: Responses, challenges and opportunities', a new book series with Peter Lang Publishers which seeks to make scientific research and sustainability praxis accessible to a general audience.

Alongside her socio-ecological endeavours, Amanda has undertaken research on broader social, economic and political issues within contemporary society and was involved in ‘Generation What’, a pan-European research project on the views and experiences of nearly one million 18-34 year olds. Working with colleagues in UCD's School of Sociology, Amanda was part of the research team that analysed findings of the survey completed by over 33,000 young people in Ireland; she also provided analysis of the Irish findings in a RTÉ 2 documentary which was televised in October-November 2017.

Amanda holds a PhD in Sociology from University College Dublin, a MA and HDip in Adult and Community Education (both with first class honours) from Maynooth University, and a BA Hons in Community Development (first class honours) from Letterkenny Institute of Technology. She completed postgraduate studies in 'Energy, Environment and Sustainable Development' with the University of Oslo and conducted primary research on Norwegian state hydrocarbon management while in Norway. She has also undertaken a wide range of professional training related to learning technologies, blended delivery, community leadership, youth work, advice and guidance. Amanda's professional experiences mirror her academic interests and she has previously worked in higher education institutions across the island of Ireland (National University of Ireland Galway, University College Dublin, Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland), adult and community education organisations (An Cosán Virtual Community College and Donegal Vocational Education Committee [Donegal ETB]), numerous community and voluntary sector groups.


Research Interests


Anthropogenic climate change; policy frameworks, decision-making and practices surrounding climate action and hydrocarbon extraction; energy conflicts and just transition; ideology and resource management; transformative pedagogy; community activism; community participation in decision-making.


Expertise related to UN Sustainable Development Goals

In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This person’s work contributes towards the following SDG(s):

  • SDG 3 - Good Health and Well-being
  • SDG 7 - Affordable and Clean Energy
  • SDG 8 - Decent Work and Economic Growth
  • SDG 10 - Reduced Inequalities
  • SDG 11 - Sustainable Cities and Communities
  • SDG 12 - Responsible Consumption and Production
  • SDG 13 - Climate Action


  • H Social Sciences (General)
  • HM Sociology
  • HT Communities. Classes. Races
  • JF Political institutions (General)


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