John Agnew

John Agnew profile photo

John Agnew

Ladder Faculty

Office: 1171 BUNCHE HALL


Phone: 3108251713


(Ph.D., Ohio State University, 1976) is Distinguished Professor of Geography with research interests in Political Geography, International Political Economy, European Urbanization, and Italy. Professor Agnew teaches courses in Political and European Geography. He is also a Professor in UCLA’s Department of Italian and was Visiting Professor of Political Geography at Queen’s University, Belfast, 2012-14. Editor-in-Chief, Territory, Politics, Governance.


B.A. (Hons.) Geography and Politics, University of Exeter, England, 1970
Cert.Ed. Education, University of Liverpool, England, 1971
M.A. Geography, Ohio State University, Columbus, OH, 1973
Ph.D. Geography, Ohio State University, Columbus OH, 1976


Political Geography of Modern Europe;
Place and Politics in Modern Italy;
No Borders, No Nations: Nationalism and Borders in the Balkans;
Sovereignty and Globalization;
Geopolitics of the World Economy;
Political Geography of Water;
Critical Geopolitics of China

Selected Publications

  • With M. Shin, Mapping Populism: Taking Politics to the People (Lanham MD: Rowman and Littlefield, 2019)
  • Globalization and Sovereignty: Beyond the Territorial Trap (Lanham MD: Rowman and Littlefield, 2018) — Second Edition.
  • “Too many Scotlands? Place, the SNP and the future of nationalist mobilization,” Scottish Geographical Journal (2018)
  • “Fellini’s sense of place,” in F. Burke et al. (eds.) Wiley-Blackwell Companion to Federico Fellini (Oxford: Wiley-Blackwell, 2019).
  • With M. Coleman (eds.) Handbook of Geographies of Power (Cheltenham: Elgar, 2018)
  • With M. Shin, “Spatializing populism: going to the people in Italy,” Annals of the Association of American Geographers, 107 (2017)
  • With S. Rolf, “Sovereignty regimes in the South China Sea: Assessing contemporary Sino-US relations,” Eurasian Geography and Economics, 57 (2016), 1-24.
  1. With M. Shin, “Electoral dramaturgy: Insights from Italian politics about the 2015-16 campaign strategy of Donald Trump … and beyond,”  Southeastern Geographer, 56/3 (2016): 265-72.
  • With S. Stephenson, “The work of networks: embedding firms, transport and the state in the Russian Arctic oil and gas sector,” Environment and Planning A 48 (2016), 558-76.
  • “La geopolitica de la austeridad europea: Ordnungspolitik y la sombra del modelo economico aleman sobre la crisis de la Eurozona,” Geopolitica(s) (Madrid Spain), 6 (2015), 179-200.
  • Co-editor, The Wiley-Blackwell Companion to Political Geography (2015)
  • “Editorial: Territory, Politics, Governance” Territory, Politics, Governance, 1,1 (2013) (PDF)
  • “Of Canons and Fanons,” Dialogues in Human Geography, 2, 3 (2012), 321-3. (PDF)
  • “Is US Security Policy ‘Pivoting” from the Atlantic to Asia-Pacific?” Friedrich Ebert Stiftung Tiergarten Conference (Berlin), September 12 2012. (PDF)
  • “Looking Back to Look Forward: Chinese Geopolitical Narratives and China’s Past,” Eurasian Geography and Economics, 53/3 (2012), 301-14. (PDF)
  • With Scott Stephenson et al. “Projected 21st Century Changes to Arctic Marine Access,” Climatic Change (2013).
  • “Arguing with Regions,” Regional Studies (2013) (PDF)
  • “Rethinking Popular Sovereignty in Light of the Arab Awakening,” Arab World Geographer, 15/1 (2012), 82-90.
  • “Putting Politics into Economic Geography,” in T. Barnes et al. (eds.) Wiley-Blackwell Companion to Economic Geography (Oxford: Wiley-Blackwell, 2012) (PDF)
  • With Luca Muscara’, Making Political Geography (Lanham MD: Rowman and Littlefield, Second Edition, 2012)
  • “The Big Seducer: Berlusconi’s Image at Home and Abroad and the Future of Italian Politics,” California Italian Studies, 2/1 (2011). (PDF)
  • With David N. Livingstone (eds.) Sage Handbook of Geographical Knowledge (London: Sage Publications, 2011)
  • “Space and Place,” in John A. Agnew and David N. Livingstone (eds.) Sage Handbook of Geographical Knowledge (London: Sage Publications, 2011). (PDF)
  • With M. Shin, “Spatial Regression for Electoral Studies: the Case of the Italian Lega Nord,” in B. Warf and J. Leib (eds.) Revitalizing Electoral Geography (Farnham, England: Ashgate, 2011)
  • With James S. Duncan (eds.) Wiley-Blackwell Companion to Human Geography (Oxford: Wiley-Blackwell, 2011)
  • With Scott Stephenson and Laurence Smith, “Divergent Long-Term Trajectories of Human Access to the Arctic,” Nature Climate Change, 1 (2011). (PDF)
  • “Dualisme contre polyphonie dans la gouvernance territoriale contemporaine,” in Giuseppe Bettoni (ed.) Gouverner les territoires: antagonismes et partenariats entre acteurs publics (Paris: IGPDE, Ministry of Finance, 2011). (PDF)
  • “Waterpower: Politics and the Geography of Water Provision,” Annals of the Association of American Geographers,” 101/3 (2011), 463-76. (PDF)
  • “Emerging China and Critical Geopolitics: Between World Politics and Chinese Particularity,” Eurasian Geography and Economics, 51/5 (2010), 569-82. (PDF)
  • “Deus Vult: the geopolitics of the Catholic Church,” Geopolitics, 15 (2010), 39-61. (PDF)
  • “Italian Labyrinth,” Journal of Cultural Geography 27 (2010), 261-73. (PDF)
  • “‘Ghosts of Rome’: the haunting of Fascist efforts at remaking Rome as Italy’s capital city,” Annali d’Italianistica, 28 (2010), 179-97. (PDF)
  • “ Money games: currencies and power in the contemporary world economy,” Antipode 41 s1 (2010), 214-38.
  • “Making the strange familiar: geographical analogy in global geopolitics,” Geographical Review, 99/3 (2009), 426-43. (PDF)
  • Globalization and Sovereignty (Lanham MD: Rowman and Littlefield, 2009) Outstanding Academic Title, Choice, 2009 (PDF)
  • With Michael Shin, Berlusconi’s Italy: Mapping Contemporary Italian Politics (Philadelphia: Temple University Press, 2008) (PDF)
  • “Borders on the Mind: Re-Framing Border Thinking,” Ethics and Global Politics, 1/4 (2008), 1-17. (PDF)
  • With T.W. Gillespie, J. Gonzalez, and B. Min, “Baghdad Nights: Evaluating the US Military ‘Surge’ Using Nighttime Light Signatures,” Environment and Planning A, 40 (2008), 2285-95. (PDF)
  • “Know-Where: Geographies of Knowledge of World Politics,” International Political Sociology, 1/2 (2007), 138-148. (PDF)
  • “No Borders, No Nations: Making Greece in Macedonia,” Annals of the Association of American Geographers, 97/2 (2007), 398-422.(PDF)
  • “Remaking Italy? Place Configurations and Italian Electoral Politics under the ‘Second Republic,'” Modern Italy, 12/1 (2007), 17-38.
  • Hegemony: The New Shape of Global Power (Philadelphia: Temple University Press, 2005) Outstanding Academic Title, Choice, 2005
  • “Sovereignty Regimes: Territoriality and State Authority in Contemporary World Politics,” Annals of the Association of American Geographers, 95/2 (2005), 437-461.
  • Co-edited with Katharyne Mitchell and Gerard Toal, A Companion to Political Geography (Oxford:Blackwell, 2003) (PDF)

Grants & Awards

Chancellor’s Award for Distinguished Scholarship, Syracuse University 1996
Wasserstrom Award for Graduate Teaching, Syracuse University, 1995
Guggenheim Fellowship 2003-2004
Hettner Lectures, University of Heidelberg 2000
Choice Outstanding Title Book Award, 2005 and 2009
Distinguished Scholarship Award, American Association of Geographers, 2006
2007 UCLA Award in Distinguished Teaching ; UCLA 122nd Faculty Research Lecture, 2017
President, American Association of Geographers, 2008-9
Phi Beta Kappa Visiting Scholar, 2012-13
Visiting Professor: University of British Columbia, 1979; Miami University of Ohio, 1986; University of Cambridge, 1992; University of Chicago, 1992; University of Iowa, 1994; Scuola Superiore Sant’ Anna, Pisa, 1994; UCL (London), 1995; University of Durham, 2003; Queen’s University, Belfast, 2003, 2012-14; University of Siena, 2010; University of Exeter, 2012; University of Leipzig, 2015; University of Grenoble Alpes, 2018. Fellow of the Royal Geographical Society, 1994-; Fellow of the Regional Studies Association, 2011-; Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, 2013-; Fellow of the British Academy, 2017-; AAG Fellow, 2019-; Honorary Ph.D. (Faculty of Science, University of Oulu, Finland, 2017)

Graduate Students

I have been fortunate down the years to work with many excellent doctoral students including Gerard Toal (Virginia Tech), Susan Roberts (Kentucky), Mathew Coleman (Ohio State), Monica Varsanyi (City University of New York), Scott Stephenson (RAND), Tom Narins (Albany), Nuala Johnson (Queen’s Belfast), Joanne Sharp (St. Andrew’s), Tristan Sturm (Queen’s Belfast), Scott Salmon (New School for Social Research), Jonathan Leib (Old Dominion), Wendy Jepson (Texas A&M), Henry Sivak (Arizona State), Sara Hughes (Cal State Monterey Bay), Ali Hamdan (George Washington), Julien Mercille (University College Dublin) and Wesley Reisser (George Washington and US State Department).

External Collaborators

Here is a link to a video in which John Agnew connects Belfast as a place to his subsequent research:

Fields of Study

Political and urban geography, international political economy, Italy, Mediterranean World.