The Bartlett Development Planning Unit

Prof Robert Biel

Prof Robert Biel

Professor of the Political Ecology of Sustainable Food

Development Planning Unit

Faculty of the Built Environment

Joined UCL
1st Sep 1998


London School of Economics and Political Science
Doctorate, Doctor of Philosophy | 1992


Specialising in international political economy, systems theory, sustainable development and urban agriculture.  Has been a member of DPU staff since 1997-8, having previously taught at School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS) and Birkbeck College.  He now works part-time, teaching on the Masters course in Environment and Sustainable Development, directed by Adriana Allen.   His book The New Imperialism (2000) dealt with structural issues in North-South relations and has been translated (in a new revised edition in 2007) into Arabic and Spanish.  His latest book The Entropy of Capitalism (Leiden: Brill, 2012) proposes a novel  synthesis between systems theory and political economy.  As a practitioner of low-input agriculture as well as an activist in the Transition Towns movements, Robert is particularly interested in how the crisis can act as a trigger for a new community resilience.  Together with Yves Cabannes, Robert has played a role within the DPU's funded research, consultancy and teaching on the issue of urban agriculture.