John Pickles is the Patterson Distinguished Professor of Geography and International Studies at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill. His research focuses on economic geographies of production and work, post-socialist economies in Central and East European countries into the EU, and migration routes and border management in Euro-Med. He was Head of the Department of Geography from 2007-2013.
He holds PhDs from the Pennsylvania State University and the University of Natal, and MA and BA (Hons) from Oxford University. He sits on the Scientific Advisory Panel to the International Geographical Union’s Initiative for the UN International Year of Global Understanding, served from 2007-2012 as the research coordinator for the Apparel Sector Research Group of the Capturing the Gains Network dealing with social and economic upgrading in global production networks (capturingthegains.org), and sat on the University of North Carolina Chancellor’s Advisory Committee on Labor and Licensing from 2005-2012. He currently works on three related areas of research; the changing dynamics in apparel global value chains and their effects on the geographies of production and employment in different regions; post-socialist economies and the integration of Central and East European countries into the EU; and migration routes and border management in Euro-Med. His books on cultural and geographical theory include: Anomie of the Earth: Philosophy, Politics, Autonomy (co-edited, Duke University Press, 2015), A History of Spaces: Cartographic Reason, Mapping, and the Geo-Coded World (Routledge, 2004), Ground Truth: The Social Implications of Geographical Information Systems (edited, The Guilford Press), Commonplaces: Essays on the Nature of Place (co-edited, University Press of America 1989), and Phenomenology, Science, and Geography: Space and the Human Sciences (Cambridge University Press, 1985). His books on political economy include Toward Better Work – Understanding Labour in Apparel Global Value Chains. (co-edited, /Macmillan 2013), Globalization and Regionalization in Post-socialist Economies: the Common Economic Spaces of Europe (edited, Palgrave Macmillan, 2009), State and Society in Post-Socialist and Post-Soviet Economies (edited, Palgrave Macmillan, 2009), Environmental Transitions: Post-Communist Transformations and Ecological Defense in Central and Eastern Europe (co-authored, Routledge, 2002), and Theorising Transition: The Political Economy of Post-Communist Transformations (co-edited, Routledge, 1998). His newest book: Articulations of Capital: Global Production Networks and Regional Development (co-authored with Adrian Smith; Wiley/Blackwell) will appear in 2015/2016.