Academic Profile : Faculty

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Assoc Prof Md Saidul Islam
Associate Professor, School of Social Sciences
External Links
Md Saidul Islam is an Associate Professor of Sociology and the past coordinator of the Environment and Sustainability Research Cluster in the School of Social Sciences and Asian School of the Environment, Nanyang Technological University, Singapore (NTU). He’s a former Visiting Scholar in the Abdul Latif Jameel Water and Food Systems Lab (J-WAFS), Massachusetts Institute of Technology (Fall 2018).

Prof. Islam’s research interests include international development and environmental sociology, with a particular focus on industrial aquaculture, global agro-food system, climate change, food security, and environmental sustainability. He has published seven books on these topics:
(1) Development, Power and the Environment: Neoliberal Paradox in the Age of Vulnerability (Routledge, New York, 2013; solo-authored);
(2) Confronting the Blue Revolution: Industrial Aquaculture and Sustainability in the Global South (University of Toronto Press, 2014; solo-authored);
(3) Social Justice in the Globalization of Production: Labor, Gender and the Environment Nexus (Palgrave Macmillan, 2015; co-authored);
(4) Education and Sustainability: Paradigms, Policies, and Practices in Asia (Routledge, 2017; co-edited);
(5) Sustainability through the Lens of Environmental Sociology (MDPI, Switzerland, 2018; edited); and
(6) Islam and Democracy in South Asia: The Case of Bangladesh (Palgrave Macmillan, 2020; co-authored).
(7) Climate change and food security in Asia Pacific: Response and resilience (Palgrave Macmillan, 2021; co-authored).

In addition to books, Dr. Islam also published over four dozen peer-reviewed journal articles and book chapters; notable amongst them is his co-authored article on sustainable seafood in the journal Science. He is the recipient of a number of awards including the Early Investigator Award 2015 (Canadian Sociological Association) and the Outstanding Scientist Award for Publication Excellence 2017 (i-Proclaim Annual Research Award, Malaysia). His current projects include “Climate change and food security in the Asia-Pacific: Response and Resilience” and “The rise of ‘green’ movements in the global environmental politics”, both supported by Tier-1 grants from the Ministry of Education, Singapore.

Dr. Islam is the founder of various conceptual frameworks and paradigms such as (a) the Twin-driven Commodity Chain, (b) Double-Risk Society, (c) Neoliberal Paradox, (d) Development as a Historical Project of Power, (e) Islamic Ecological Paradigm, (f) Plural Coexistence Model for disaster studies and (g) Modernization of Ecology. He teaches Environmental Sustainability, Development and Social Change, Environmental Sociology, and Cultural Politics of Development and Environment.

Dr. Islam earned his MA and Ph.D. in Sociology from York University in Canada where he also taught Sociology and a Bachelor in Sociology & Anthropology from International Islamic University Malaysia. He also taught at the College of William and Mary in the United States, and Nankai University in China.
Within the two broad fields of his specialization, environmental sociology, and international development, Dr. Islam is particularly known for his research on food and global aquaculture. His scholarship and interests also span in other substantive yet related areas such as neoliberal globalization, sustainability, gender and labor, social power, environmentalism, climate change, disaster vulnerabilities, social and environmental justice, and religion and human rights.
  • Developing a public-private partnership by crowdfunding to create sustainable plastics upcycling technologies
• 10 Years Long Service Award 2019, in appreciation of the service rendered to the university, by Professor Subra Suresh, President of NTU, 2019
• MIT Visiting Scholar Award, Abdul Latif Jameel Water & Food Systems Lab, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, 2018
• Outstanding Scientist Award (for Publication Excellence), i-Proclaim Annual Research Award, Malaysia, 2017
• UN Day Award 2017, United Nations Association of Singapore (UNAS) Commemoration of UN Day, 2017
• Early Investigator Award/ Prix jeune chercheur, Canadian Sociological Association (CSA), 2015
Fellowships & Other Recognition
• Visiting Research Associate, University of Nottingham Malaysia Campus, 2018
• Cited as a pioneer in sustainability research by the Research Centre for Sustainable Communities (RCSC), Lakehead University, Canada, 2016
• Cited as the top emerging sociologist of 2015 by the Canadian Sociological Association through the “Early Investigator Award 2015”
• Nominated for the Nanyang Research Award, NTU, 2015
Courses Taught
CC6309: Globalization and Sustainability
HS2023: Environmental Sociology
HS3015: Development and Social Change
HS4027: Cultural Politics of Development and Environment
HS0301: Environmental Sustainability
Supervision of PhD Students
• Shaikh M. Kais, “Climate Change, Resilience, and Sustainability: The Case of Shrimp Aquaculture in Bangladesh” [Supervisor]; Graduated in March 2018.
• M. Nazrul Islam, “God in Politics: Islam, Islamism, and Democracy in Bangladesh” [Supervisor]; Graduated in April 2017.
• Huang Zhiyong Andy, “The Role of Grassroots Organizations in the Mitigation and Adaptation of Climate Change in Singapore”, NIE [Committee Member]; Graduated in April 2017.
• Tan Delfinn Sweimay, “The History and Science of Ornamental Aquaculture: A Study of The Koi Carp in Singapore”, Interdisciplinary Graduate School [Committee Member]; Graduated in 2018.