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Dr Chad Walker

Dr Chad Walker

Postdoctoral Research Fellow


 Amory C255


Amory Building, University of Exeter, Rennes Drive, Exeter, EX4 4RJ , UK


Chad Walker is an interdisciplinary environmental social scientist with broad interests in low-carbon transitions. Recent research endeavours include studying the impact of environmental justice and partisanship in shaping support for Canadian wind energy development, critically investigating the meaning of community wind energy, public participation and carbon pricing in Ontario (Canada), and using diverse methodologies — including Community-Based Participatory Research — to better understand reconciliation, autonomy, and pathways for improved health via Indigenous-led and owned renewable energy development in Canada (see A SHARED Future). Through these projects and others, he has used a combination of qualitative and quantitative approaches. Such work has spurred a keen interest in methodological questions surrounding the ways we think about and practice mixed methods.

Chad has landed at the University of Exeter to work with Professor Patrick Devine-Wright on the UK Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund[ed] EnergyRev Project. As a diverse team of scientists and social scientists, the team is working toward “providing evidence to overcome challenges associated with scaling up local energy markets to stimulate market uptake”. His main contribution will be to investigate user engagement and support for smart local energy systems (e.g. integrating renewable energy, energy storage, and electric vehicle charging networks). 

Broad research specialisms:

Low-carbon transitions, renewable energy policy and development, Indigenous energy autonomy, environmental policy, rural geography, health geography

Full CV:

Can be found here

Media articles:

Walker, C. (2020). Journalists covering Indigenous Peoples in renewable energy should focus on context and truth, not click-bait. The Conversation. Published January 2020. 

  • Readership of 4000+

Walker, C. (2018). Let’s create climate policy that will survive elections.The Conversation. Published November 2018.

  • Re-published in National Post, iPolitics (Canada), and MENAFN
  • Readership of 2500+

Walker, C. (2017). The need for community-based approaches to wind energyMunicipal World Magazine. Published August 2017. 

Research coverage (selected):

Corporate Knights: The Magazine for Clean Capitalism. Power of the people. November 2018. 

The Social: Western Social Science Magazine (Western University). Study says wind energy plans should generate more equitable benefits to neighbours. July 2017. 

The Globe and Mail. Local planning, ensuring area benefits, key to wind-farm buy-in. April 2017.

TVO. The secret to securing local support for wind energy? Money and power. March 2017. 

CBC Radio, Morning Drive: Study shows wind farms can gain public support. March  2017. 

Toronto Star. Local input crucial to adoption of wind farms.March  2017.

London Free Press. Turbine turmoil avoidable, study says. March 6 2017. 

CBC News. Local planning, sharing benefits key to wind-farm buy-in, study finds.March 5 2017.

CBC Radio: Afternoon Drive with Bob Steele (Audio interview). March  2017.  

Canadian Press (via Metroland Media). Local involvement key to wind-farm buy-in: study.March 5 2017. 

The Londoner, Article. “Language require changing for meaningful turbine talk”. May 2014.

London Free Press. “Western University researchers calling on governments and wind farm developers to avoid feeding war of words”. May 2014

AM980 News. “Western University Study Looks To Cut Down On Wind Turbine Rhetoric”. May 2014. 


PhD, Western University (Geography, Environment & Sustainability)

MA, Western University (Geography, Environment & Sustainability)

BA, Bowling Green State University (Environmental Policy & Analysis)



Research group links


Energy policy, climate/environmental policy, rural geography, environmental studies, environmental hazards & human health, smart energy systems, low-carbon transitions

Supervision / Group

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