Liam Saddington is an ESRC Postdoctoral Research Fellow. Liam completed his DPhil in Geography and the Environment at the School in 2021, with his thesis "Rising Seas and Sinking Island: The Geopolitics of Climate Change in Tuvalu and Kiribati". He first entered the department to read for a BA in Geography in 2013, before completing his MSc in Nature, Society and Environmental Governance in 2017. In 2018 and 2019, Liam was a Visiting Research Fellow at the University of the South Pacific.
Liam is a political and environmental geographer whose research focuses on the geopolitics of climate change concerning small island states and rising sea levels. His work explores how the relationship between territory and statehood is being reimagined in low-lying atolls in light of rising sea levels. It examines how space and time shape understandings of climate change and the implications for critical geopolitics, adaptation, and diplomacy.
Liam is interested in how different forms of knowledge are mobilised in controversies over the futures of atoll states. Specifically, he is interested in how vertical geopolitics and geographies of the ocean intersect in the construction of atoll states as "sinking islands" and resistance to this term. His research focuses on the small island states of Tuvalu and Kiribati in the South Pacific.