Knowledge for a sustainable world

BScAg, MSAgExtEd, PhD, FHEA

Mofa has joined the Natural Resources Institute (NRI) in July 2020 after having worked as a Senior Lecturer in Global Food Security & Development at Nottingham Trent University (NTU) for over seven years (2013-2020). Prior to that Mofa held (during 2009-2013) various research positions at the Open University (UK) and Scotland’s Rural College (SRUC), following the completion of his PhD from Massey University (New Zealand) in 2008. Mofa also worked for over six years (1997-2003) as an Assistant Professor at Bangladesh Agricultural University after completing his BSc in Agriculture and MS in Agricultural Extension degrees from the same institution.

Mofa is an interdisciplinary behavioural/social scientist with interest in the broad areas of sustainable agriculture, food security, and environment. Systems thinking and approaches as well as theoretical and methodological pluralism often underpin his works. Mofa’s research has been published in renowned journals like: Land Use Policy, Food Security, Ecological Indicators, Journal of Rural Studies, Journal of Environmental Psychology, Applied Geography, and Journal of Flood Risk Management.

During his career Mofa has been involved in a range of international development projects funded by the DFID, World Bank, JSPS, and industry. In addition to academic research and teaching Mofa has considerable experience in the planning, monitoring and evaluation of international development projects.

Mofa’s key research interests fall within the following cross-cutting thematic areas.

  • Food & nutrition security (primarily at individual and household levels)
  • Coping/adaptation, vulnerability, and resilience of individuals and households relating to climatic and non-climatic (e.g. conflicts) hazards
  • Perception, attitude, and behaviour in relation to agricultural, food, and environmental issues
  • Technology adoption and diffusion in agriculture
  • Agricultural extension/communication
  • Agricultural innovation systems
  • Indicators (metrics) and methods for assessing the sustainability/ sustainable intensification of agricultural systems

Mofa is a member of the Livelihoods and Institutions department within NRI. He works closely with a number of research groups within the institute.

Mofa contributes to teaching and supervision of postgraduate students at NRI.

The key funded research projects in which Mofa has been involved include the following.

  • March 2019 – Ongoing: Climate change adaptation strategies and wellbeing of farmers in risk-prone coastal areas of Bangladesh. Research project being implemented in collaboration with three Bangladeshi universities. Fieldwork in nine Bangladeshi coastal districts. Funded by a Nottingham Trent University (NTU) grant. Principal Investigator.
  • October 2017 – Ongoing: Developing a Sustainability Assessment Toolkit for Abaca (Musa textilis) Plantation Agriculture. Action research aims to develop a sustainability assessment toolkit for Abaca plantation agriculture through bottom-up and participatory processes. Fieldwork is being conducted in Indonesia. Funded jointly by NTU and a multinational company. Principal Investigator.
  • 2016-2019: Household resilience against food insecurity in areas of protracted conflicts – A Libyan study. Project funded by the Libyan Ministry of Education. Research Supervisor.
  • 2015-18: Developing indicators of sustainable intensification for UK agriculture. Funded by NTU. Research Supervisor.
  • March 2013-June 2014: Farm as Power Station. Research project aimed to gather evidence for influencing on-farm renewable energy policies in England. Collaboration involved NTU, Farmers Weekly, and Forum for the Future. Funded jointly by Ashden Trust and NTU. Researcher Adviser & Analyst.
  • September 2011-March 2013: Enhancing SRUC’s Impacts on the Rural Sector: Applying the Agricultural Innovation Systems Perspective. Policy research project aimed to identify options for promoting innovation capacity in rural Scotland. Funded by the Scottish Funding Council. Researcher.
  • July 2011-Jan 2012: Global Power in Agriculture: Resources, Economics and Politics. Policy-oriented research aimed to gather evidence as to who has the power in global agriculture in terms of economics, politics, and possession of natural resources. The research was funded by the Oxford Funding Conference (OFC). Co-Investigator & Researcher.
  • December 2008-December 2009: English-in-Action. An educational development project aimed to promote ICT-based pedagogical innovation in Bangladeshi schools. Funded by the UK-DFID. Researcher.

Mofa has been involved with the supervision of a number of PhD students, with four successful completions to date.

  • Dinish Nadaraja (2017 – Ongoing): Developing a Sustainability Assessment Toolkit for Abaca (Musa textilis) Plantation Agriculture (Director of Studies or Main Supervisor at NTU)
  • Rashd Swesi (completed in July 2020): Household Resilience against Food Insecurity in Areas of Protracted Conflicts – A Libyan Study (Director of Studies)
  • Joshua Wells (completed in April 2020): Natural Flood Management: Assessing the Barriers to Wider Uptake and Implementation (Co-Supervisor)
  • Niamh Elizabeth Mahon (completed in Feb 2019): The Development of Stakeholder-sensitive Indicators of Sustainable Intensification for UK Agriculture (Director of Studies)
  • Oluseun Akinsorotan (completed in 2017): Status and Dynamics of Large Mammal Occupancy in a Nigerian National Park (Co-Supervisor)

In addition, Mofa has supervised over 20 MSc and MRes research projects to successful completion involving students from various African and Asian countries as well as the UK.

Mofa would welcome postgraduate students interested in research on behavioural/social dimensions of sustainable agriculture, food security, and environment.

  • Islam, M. M. & Mamun, A.A. (2020). Beyond the risks to food availability – linking climatic hazard vulnerability with the food access of delta-dwelling households. Food Security, 12 (1), 37-58.
  • Grace, I. & Islam, M.M. (2020). Youth Motivations to Study Agricultural Courses in Tertiary Institutions. Journal of Agricultural Education & Extension. DOI: 10.1080/1389224X.2020.1773285.
  • Swesi, R. M., El-Anis, I., & Islam, M. M. (2020). Food insecurity coping strategies in conflict-affected Libya. Development in Practice, 30 (3), 394-408.
  • Wells, J., Labadz, J., Smith, A., & Islam, M. M. (2019). Barriers to the uptake and implementation of natural flood management: a social-ecological analysis. Journal of Flood Risk Management, 2019, e12561, 1-12.
  • Mahon, N., Crute, I., Di Bonitto, M., Simmons, E., & Islam, M.M. (2018). Towards a broad-based and holistic framework of sustainable intensification indicators. Land Use Policy, 77, 576-597.
  • Mahon, N., Crute, I., Simmons, E., & Islam, M.M. (2017). Sustainable intensification-"oxymoron" or "third-way"? A systematic review. Ecological Indicators, 74, 73-97.
  • Mahon, N., McGuire, S., & Islam, M.M. (2016). Why bother with Bere? An investigation into the drivers behind the cultivation of a landrace barley. Journal of Rural Studies, 45, 54-65.
  • Islam, M. M., Barnes, A. & Toma, L. (2013). An Investigation into Climate Change Scepticism among Farmers. Journal of Environmental Psychology, 34, 137-150.
  • Barnes, A., Islam, M. M. & Toma, L. (2013). Heterogeneity in Climate Change Risk Perceptions Amongst Dairy Farmers: A Latent Class Clustering Analysis. Applied Geography, 41, 105-115.
  • Islam M. M., Renwick A., Lamprinopoulou C., & Klerkx, L. (2013). Innovation in livestock genetic improvement. EuroChoices, 12 (1), 42-46.
  • Renwick, A., Islam, M. M., & Thomson, S. (2012). Power in Global Agriculture: Economics, Politics, and Natural Resources. International Journal of Agricultural Management, 2(1), 31-48.
  • Islam, M. M., Renwick, A., Lamprinopouloy, C., & Klerkx, L. (2012). Dynamics of Innovation in Livestock Genetics in Scotland: An Agricultural Innovation Systems Perspective. Proceedings of the 21st International Scientific Conference in association with 131st EAAE seminar (pp. 301-318). Prague: Czech University of Life Sciences.
  • Lamprinopouloy, C., Renwick, A., Klerkx, L., Hermans, F., Islam, M. M., & Roep, D. (2012). A Systemic Policy Framework: The Cases of Scottish and Dutch Agrifood Innovation Systems – Preliminary Results. Proceedings of the 21st International Scientific Conference in association with 131st EAAE seminar (pp. 281-300). Prague: Czech University of Life Sciences.
  • Islam, M.M, Gray, D., Reid, J. & Kemp, P. (2011). Developing Sustainable Farmer-Led Extension Groups: Lessons from a Bangladeshi Case Study. Journal of Agricultural Education and Extension, 17 (5), 425-443.
  • Islam, M.M., Gray, D., Reid, J., Kelly, T. & Kemp, P. (2011). Beyond Recurrent Costs: An Institutional Analysis of the Unsustainability of Donor-Supported Reforms in Agricultural Extension. Journal of International Agricultural and Extension Education, 18 (3), 5-18.
  • Khan, S.A.K., Islam, M.N., Kabir, M.Y., & Islam, M.M. (2003). Problem confrontation by the onion growers in the South-West coastal areas of Bangladesh. Bangladesh Journal of Extension Education, 15(1&2), 89-93.
  • Akhter, M.S., Islam, M.N., Islam, M.M., & Hossain, M.A. (2001). Participation of the Women Beneficiaries in the Population Education and Family Planning Activities of the RDRS. Bangladesh Journal of Extension Education, 13(1&2), 63-75.
  • Kashem, M.A., & Islam, M. M. (2000). Comparative Analysis of Bangladeshi and Japanese Farmers’ Perception of the Benefits of Using Indigenous Farm Technologies. Bangladesh Journal of Extension Education, 11&12 (1&2), 23-31.
  • Kashem, M.A., & Islam, M. M. (1999). Use of Indigenous Agricultural Technologies by the Rural Men and Women Farmers in Bangladesh. Journal of Sustainable Agriculture, 14 (2/3), 27-43.
  • Islam, M.M., & Kashem, M.A. (1999). Farmers’ Use of Ethno-Veterinary Medicine (EVM) in the Rearing and Management of Livestock: An Empirical Study in Bangladesh. Journal of Sustainable Agriculture, 13 (4), 39-56.
  • Islam, M.M., Kashem, M.A., & Anwar, A.B.M.N. (1999). Attitude of Farmers towards the Use of Agrochemicals. Bangladesh Journal of Training and Development, 10 (1&2), 23-31.
  • Kashem, M.A., Anwar, A.B.M.N., Islam, M.M., & Hossain, M.A. (1999). Attitude of Farmers towards the Use of Indigenous Technical Knowledge in Agriculture. Bangladesh Journal of Agricultural Sciences, 26 (1), 105-109.
  • Islam, M. M., Hamid, M.A., Hoque, M. M., & Hossain, M.A. (1999, June) Farmer Field School (FFS) Paradigm: Empowering Farmers for Sustainable Agricultural Development. In A. Halim, A. Hossain, A. Kashem, M. M. Islam, M. A. M. Miah, M. A. Hamid, et al. (Eds.). Proceedings of the Symposium on Agricultural Extension Services in the 21st Century: Needs and Challenges (pp. 167-179). Bangladesh Agricultural University, Mymensingh, Bangladesh: Bangladesh Agricultural Extension Society (BAES).
  • Research and related duties
  • Teaching and related duties
  • External engagement and consultancy

In 2003, Mofa won the highly competitive New Zealand Agency for International Development (NZAID) scholarship for his PhD research. Mofa has been the reviewer of several international journals (e.g. Sustainability, Social Sciences, Journal of Agric Educ & Extension, International Journal of Agric Management, Resources, Agriculture, Plos One, Development in Practice) and the ESRC and Newton Fund grant applications. Moreover, he has served as the Joint Editor of Bangladesh Journal of Extension Education for three years (2001-2003). Mofa is an external PhD examiner for the Institute of Natural Resources of Massey University in New Zealand. He is a member of the Development Studies Association (DEA) and the Association for International Agricultural and Extension Education (AIAEE) as well as a life member of a high-level agrifood policy forum in Bangladesh named Bangladesh Agricultural Extension Society (http://baes-agext.com/). Mofa has contributed to over 20 conferences or seminars, including several invited presentations in China, USA, Canada, and UK as well as session co-organisation at the European Development Day (EDD) in Brussels.

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