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Dr Gabriela Manley

Leverhulme Early Career Fellow

Leverhulme Early Career Fellow in the Department of Anthropology



My Leverhulme project, Climate Futures: Imagination and its influence on net-zero policy in Scotland, investigates the effect these imaginations of the future have on net-zero policy creation, implementation, and support within the Scottish Government, exploring the affective influence that future imaginations have on net-zero policies that are presented as purely scientifically grounded. 

By focusing on policy creation Climate Futures provides an innovative approach that will investigate net-zero policy at its inception, rather than its eventual implementation. It will introduce a new theoretical angle to analyse climate policy, helping anthropologists, climate scientists, and politicians understand the practical, political, and interdisciplinary difficulties faced at the early stages of policy creation.

Since 2017, extensive fieldwork on political parties, Scottish Nationalism, temporality, and political planning has formed the basis of my PhD and resultant publications, talks, and public engagements. My work addresses how imaginations of the future influence nationalist politics today, affecting the way Scottish National Party (SNP) activists and politicians vote, mobilise, create policy and messaging. Through detailed ethnographic analysis of SNP politicians and activists my work challenges established analytical frameworks within political and anthropological studies that emphasise the past and present as key drivers in political action. Instead, it demonstrates the heavy influence the future has in the creation, messaging and promotion of national futures and civic nationalism.

I am a co-convenor for the Anthropology of Time Network - @AnthTime, and webmaster at American Ethnologist.

Research Interests
  • Climate change
  • Political anthropology
  • Time and temporality
  • Anthropology of the future
  • Renewable energy
  • Climate policy
  • Activism
  • Conspiracy theories
  • Anthropology of Britain/Europe