This week’s blog continues our series introducing staff who have recently started at UWTSD. This week’s interviewee is Dr Kerem Öge, who is a Lecturer in International Political Economy at UWTSD Lampeter.
What areas do you research?
My research expertise lies at the intersection of International Development and Comparative Politics, with a particular focus on transparency promotion. I look at how external influences shape domestic institutions in resource-rich countries.
My other research interests are Corruption, Energy Geopolitics, the Caspian Region, Sub-Saharan Africa, and Turkey.
What are you teaching?
I currently teach The Modern Middle East: Religion, Culture, and Politics. I have also taught courses on World Politics and Energy Geopolitics.
Where were you before you came to UWTSD?
Most recently, I was a Visiting Fellow at the University of Warwick. Prior to this, I worked at the University of Warwick, McGill University and Université Laval.
Do you remember a particular person or piece of scholarship that sparked your interest in your research specialism?
I was primarily inspired by my PhD supervisor Prof. David Deese at Boston College, who had worked on energy policy before. I can also cite “Prelude to Resource Curse”, an article on oil and gas in Soviet successor states, by Pauline Jones Luong and Erika Weinthal as a major influence.
What things are currently going on in your subject area that you find most interesting?
Many international institutions, such as the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund, promote transparency as the first line of defence against mismanagement of resource revenues. The most salient debate in my field is whether transparency can actually address corruption and lack of accountability that we observe in many resource-rich countries.
I am also fascinated by the contemporary developments in energy geopolitics, particularly the shifting of alliances between Russia, Turkey and the European Union.
How would you like to see your subject area develop in the future?
I would like to see more scholarly work on how energy governance relates to sustainable development and climate change.