James joined the School of Geography and the Environment in January 2015. He has a BA (Hons), an MPhil, and a PhD, all from the University of Cambridge. James' doctoral research examined the roles of science, evidence and discourse in EU biofuels policy making, focusing in particular on debates about biofuels' land-use change impacts.
Prior to becoming the Course Director of the MSc in Nature, Society and Environmental Governance, James taught undergraduate geographers at Oxford for two and a half years, as a tutorial fellow at Keble College and a stipendiary lecturer at Brasenose College. He was also a research fellow in the Transport Studies Unit and an associate fellow of the Institute for Science, Innovation and Society.
James is an environmental geographer with research interests in the governance of complex problems situated at the nexus of climate change, sustainable energy and the environment, especially at the European Union level. Drawing on the disciplinary and sub-disciplinary fields of critical political ecology, science and technology studies, and interpretive policy analysis, James uses qualitative research methods to analyse how environmental knowledges are variously constructed, circulated and interpreted, and also how they are co-produced with wider governance objectives and normative value judgements in specific political contexts. James is involved in numerous on-going research projects, which explore the politics of EU sustainable road transport policy, the implications of climate geoengineering for public engagement in environmental governance, and the construction of expertise in interactions between chief scientific advisers and policy makers in UK government.
James convenes and teaches on modules in 'Governance, Politics and Policy' and 'Research Methods and Practice' for the MSc in Nature, Society and Environmental Governance.
- Anderton, K. and Palmer, J.R. (2016) Evidence-based policy as iterative learning: the case of EU biofuels targets. Chapter 4 in, Hantrais, L., Lenihan, A.T. and MacGregor, S. (eds.) International and Interdisciplinary Insights into Evidence and Policy. Routledge. 138 pp. ISBN: 9781138655263.
- Palmer, J.R. (2016) Interpretive analysis and regulatory impact assessment. Chapter 4 in, Dunlop, C.A. and Radaelli, C.M. (eds.) Handbook of Regulatory Impact Assessment. Edward Elgar. pp. 52-65. ISBN: 978 1 78254 955 0.
- Anderton, K. and Palmer, J. (2015) Evidence-based policy as iterative learning: The case of EU biofuels targets. Contemporary Social Science, 10(2): 138-147.
- Palmer, J. and Owens, S. (2015) Indirect land-use change and biofuels: The contribution of assemblage theory to place-specific environmental governance. Environmental Science and Policy, 53(A): 18-26.
- Parker, M., Acland, A., Armstrong, H.J., Bellingham, J.R., Bland, J., Bodmer, H.C., Burall, S., Castell, S., Chilvers, J., Cleevely, D.D., Cope, D., Costanzo, L., Dolan, L.A., Doubleday, R., Feng, W.Y., Godfray, H.C.J., Good, D.A., Grant, J., Green, N., Groen, A.J., Guilliams, T.T., Gupta, S., Hall, A.C., Heathfield, A., Hotopp, U., Kass, G., Leeder, T., Lickorish, T.A., Lueshi, L.M., Magee, C., Mata, T., McBride, T., McCarthy, N., Mercer, A., Neilson, R., Ouchikh, J., Oughton, E.J., Oxenham, D., Pallett, H., Palmer, J., Patmore, J., Petts, J., Pinkerton, J., Ploszek, R., Pratt, A., Rocks, S.A., Stansfield, N., Surkovic, E., Tyler, C.P., Watkinson, A.R., Wentworth, J., Willis, R., Wollner, P.K.A., Worts, K. and Sutherland, W.J. (2015) Identifying the science and technology dimensions of emerging public policy issues through horizon scanning. PLOS ONE, 9(5). e96480.
- Palmer, J. (2014) How do policy entrepreneurs influence policy change? Framing and boundary work in EU transport biofuels policy. Environmental Politics, 24(2): 270-287.
- Palmer, J.R. (2014) Biofuels and the politics of land-use change: tracing the interactions of discourse and place in European policy making. Environment and Planning A, 46(2): 337-352.
- Palmer, J. (2012) Risk governance in an age of wicked problems: Lessons from the European approach to indirect land-use change. Journal of Risk Research, 15(5): 495-513.
- Palmer, J. (2011) Book Review: "Plant Resources for Food, Fuel and Conservation", by Robert Henry. The Geographical Journal, 177(2): 195-196.
- Palmer, J. (2010) Stopping the unstoppable? A discursive-institutionalist analysis of renewable transport fuel policy. Environment and Planning C: Government and Policy, 28(6): 992-1010.