Research Profile

  • Nigel has been involved in sustainability research and teaching since 2010 and received a Ph.D. in Sustainability from Arizona State University in 2015. He brings his background in transformational sustainability research to bear on the urgent need for businesses and economies that prioritise social and environmental goals as highly as economic viability. He is particularly interested in sustainable local food economies. He has taught sustainability in higher education since 2010 and sustainable business since 2017 in the USA and Germany. Prior to 2010, Nigel worked in the IT sector and has extensive private and public sector experience in software engineering, project management, and consultancy in the UK and USA.

  • Nigel has a higher education teaching certificate from Harvard University and has experience of teaching in higher education going back to 2010 at undergraduate and postgraduate levels in the USA and more recently in Germany. Now back in the UK, he is currently pursuing an HEA fellowship. In his teaching, Nigel favours an active learning pedagogy, including project-based learning that involves students in research projects.

    At UON, Nigel is currently teaching the following:

    • Social responsibility and Impact
    • Business project supervision
  • Nigel’s research interests lie in furthering the development of sustainable local economies through entrepreneurial ecosystems that embrace a variety of enterprise types and a broad range of sustainable business models and practices. He is particularly interested in the role of cooperatives, employee ownership, and other alternative businesses as key building blocks of such an economy.

    Nigel is experienced in qualitative, case study-based research methods, including transdisciplinary and participatory approaches. This has entailed working with local government, non-profit, and business partners in ‘living labs’ to engage with entrepreneurs, small businesses, and community groups on learning and development projects or ‘experiments’.

    Current research topics include:

    • Sustainable entrepreneurial ecosystems – functions and their development
    • Sustainable business practices – assessment, transfer and scaling
    • Cooperative and employee-owned businesses – sustainability impact on local economy and community
    • Sustainable local food economies