A. M. Shapan Adnan

I work in the broad terrain of the social sciences, interweaving political economy, sociology and politics, with a focus on South Asian Studies. My PhD is in Social and Political Sciences (SPS) from the University of Cambridge (1984, Churchill College), following a B.A. Honours with major in Economics from the School of African and Asian Studies (AFRAS), University of Sussex (1971). At the University of Oxford, I have been a Visiting Scholar (1995-96), Visiting Research Fellow (2011), and Associate of the Contemporary South Asian Studies Programme (CSASP) (2011-18). I have taught in the South Asian Studies Programme (SASP) of the National University of Singapore (NUS) (2000-09), involving undergraduate and graduate teaching, as well as PhD supervision. Earlier, I had taught at the Universities of Dhaka (1972-78) and Chittagong (1978-91). Since 2008, I have served as a member of the international advisory board of the Journal of Peasant Studies. My research and publications include theoretical analysis and empirical studies based on fieldwork, as well as their application to practical issues of policy and development. The specific topics on which I have worked include agrarian structure, capitalist development, land grabs, primitive accumulation/accumulation by dispossession, peasant economy and society, village studies, resistance and mobilization, religious and ethnic conflicts, forced migration and displacement in the South Asian borderlands (e.g. the Rohingya refugees from Myanmar). My work experience extends into commissioned research and policy analysis of concrete development programmes for various national and international organizations including, most recently, research on food security and livelihoods for the UN World Food Programme (WFP).

Universities of Cambridge and Sussex



2020 – Present


Univeristy of Cambridge



Oxford University Contemporary South Asian Studies Programme (CSASP)

2011 – 2018

Visiting Research Fellow

Oxford University Contemporary South Asian Studies Programme (CSASP)

2011 – 2011

Associate Professor

National University of Singapore

2000 – 2009

Visiting Scholar

Oxford University, Queen Elizabeth House

1995 – 1996

Professor/ Associate Professor and Chairman, Department of Economics

University of Chittagong

1978 – 1991

Assistant Professor

University of Dhaka

1972 – 1978