The School of Geography, Politics and Sociology

Staff Profile

Dr Lisa Garforth

Senior Lecturer in Sociology


I'm a senior lecturer at Newcastle where I research and teach on social theory, utopian studies, environmental/Anthropocene futures, science fiction and social imaginaries. I'm also interested in epistemic cultures and gender.

I'm currently Postgraduate Research Director for Sociology at Newcastle and also Postgraduate Director for the School of Geography, Politics and Sociology.


How can we live better with nature? What would a good environmental future look and feel like? My research explores social thinking about green futures in fiction, policy, public debate and the sociological imagination and how it is changing in response to climate change and the Anthropocene.  My recent book Green Utopias: Environmental Hope Before and After Nature (Polity 2017) explores some of these debates.

The AHRC-funded project Unsettling Scientific Stories: Expertise, Narrative, and Future Histories explored how people in different historical periods envisioned their futures over the long technological twentieth-century and how they used fiction to imagine and explore, speculate and critique what science might bring.

My ongoing work on science fiction readers with Dr Amy Chambers and  Dr Miranda Iossifidis examines the relevance of SF reading for public understandings of science and environmental challenges, and its value for people as we try to come to terms with climate change and the Anthropocene. 


For 2020-21 I am contributing to the Stage 2 compulsory module SOC2058 Understanding Social Change and Transformation, and offering my MA option SOC8045 Sociology for the Anthropocene.