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Nathan Andrews of McMaster's department of political science

Meet Dr Nathan Andrews

Nathan Andrews joined the department of political science on January 1, 2022. He recently sat down with the communications team to discuss his research interests, the questions that still keep him up at night and his love of dance.

Jan 27, 2022



  1. Where are you from? What did you do before you came to McMaster?

I left my position at the University of Northern British Columbia to take up this exciting position at McMaster University in January 2022. Prior to working at UNBC for over four years, I was a Banting Postdoctoral Fellow at Queen’s University which makes the return a sort of ‘homecoming’ for me considering I did my master’s degree at Brock University and do maintain an extensive network of friends and colleagues in Southern Ontario.


  1. What got you interested in political science?

I have always been interested in institutions and governance and how they work to serve people and communities. I am particularly curious about the power asymmetries and procedural injustices built into institutions (both formal and informal) that limit people’s access to sustainable livelihoods or what may be considered as the ‘good life’. This overarching interest led me to pursue political science from undergrad to the PhD level.

Yet, you probably won’t believe that I still do not have all the answers to the many questions that keep me puzzled. 


  1. What are your teaching and research interests?

 For the Winter semester, I am teaching one undergrad course (POLSCI 2H03: Globalization and the State) and a graduate seminar (POLSCI/GLOBALST 774: Global Political Economy). These two courses have been interesting so far because they align with my research interest in the global political economy of resource extraction and development. Another interest of mine revolves around the scholarship of teaching and learning, comprising the politics of representation, epistemic hegemony/oppression, academic dependency, racism and whiteness in knowledge production and dissemination. 


  1. Is there any research that you’re working on right now that you can share with us?

I am the Principal Investigator on a new collaborative project that examines meaningful stakeholder engagement in resource-rich communities in the Global South and 'High North’ such as Canada, Chile, Ghana, and Norway. This project is funded by a five-year SSHRC Insight Grant, and started just last year, and we are yet to undertake the exciting fieldwork that we hope would result in interesting findings to share.

The comparative aspect of the research is driven by our interest in examining what similarities and differences exist in sites of natural resource extraction (mainly minerals and hydrocarbons) where agents such as corporations and governments are expected to consult and engage with affected populations. We believe such public consultations do not often work and we are curious about ways in which this can be reversed, especially for the betterment of community members (e.g., women and youth) who tend to be marginalized in such processes.


  1. What would your students be surprised to learn about you?

There are quite a few things about me that would surprise my students but let me just share one for now: I am absolutely a party animal, and my friends call me ‘king of the dance floor’! It is surprising to most because I can be quite serious with my academic work at the same time. My general principle is work hard and then you can party even harder — well, perhaps when COVID is over!