Personal profile


I am a political geographer whose work brings together research on energy, materialities, urban governance, and infrastructures to conceptualise the political significance of circulations and circulatory infrastructures for the organisation of everyday life. I am especially interested in the opportunities and challenges for governance that gaseous materials present in the 21st century. More information on these themes can be found below.

In May 2020, I joined Northumbria University’s Department of Geography and Environmental Science as a Lecturer in Human Geography. Prior to this, I held research and teaching fellow positions in the sociology department at Lancaster University, the business school at the University of York, and in the institute for political science at the University of Tübingen (Germany). I completed my PhD in Human Geography at Durham University in 2017.

Research interests

Securing Circulation

A key theme in my research is exploring how different kinds of global/local flows variously relate to questions of security, risk, and resilience. I am particularly concerned with the processes and technologies through which circulations become rendered known, politicisable, and governable.

Energy and Infrastructural Politics

I am especially concerned with how flows of energy are facilitated and governed according to different understandings of risk, and the roles in which socio-technical infrastructures play in this. My work traces the consequences of these governance practices for the organisation of societies. To date, my work has predominantly focused upon natural gas networks in the UK, and on evolving proposals to develop infrastructures for the production, transport, and consumption of hydrogen.

Atmospheres and Gaseous Governance

Gases and other atmospheric bodies present unique challenges for contemporary governance and are responsible for some of today's most urgent political issues. Successfully governing them has become a 21st century imperative, requiring interventions at scales ranging from the domestic to the urban, regional, and planetary. Tracing these challenges and identifying opportunities for intervention is further explored through my work.

Matter, Materialities, and Life in the Anthropocene

My research investigates alternative ways of living with nonhumans in the Anthropocene, examining the ethics of more-than-human relations in the context of unfolding ecological crises.

Further Information



Forman, P.J., Shove, E., Lord, C., & Blue, S. (2023) "Beyond Fuel Switching and Substitution: A History of Fuel Supply on the Isle of Man" [Blog Post] Energy Flexibility Gallery, Centre for Energy Demand Solutions (CREDS) Beyond Fuel Switching and Substitution: A History of Fuel Supply on the Isle of Man – Energy Flexibility Gallery (


Gregson, N. & Forman, P.J. (2021) "England's Municipal Waste Regime: Challenges and Prospects" The Geographical Journal

Blue, S., Forman, P., & Shove, E. (2021) "Flexibilities in Energy Supply and Demand: Legacies and Lessons from the Past" Journal of Energy History 5(1) pp.1-8.

Forman, P.J. (2021) "Materialist Dialogues and the Granular" Dialogues in Human Geography

Forman, P.J. & Gregson, N. (2021) "UK Waste Management Contracts by Local Authority, 2018-2019" [Dataset] UK Data Service

Hughes, S.H., & Forman, P.J. (2021) "A Material Politics of Citizenship: The Potential of Circulating Materials from UK Immigration Removal Centres" In: Amelung, N., Gianolla, C., Sousa Ribeiro, J., & Solovova, O. (Eds) "Material Politics of Citizenship: Connecting Migrations with Science and Technology Studies" London: Routledge.


Forman, P.J. (2020) "Histories of Balancing Demand and Supply in the UK's Gas Networks, 1795-Present" Journal of Energy History URL: Histories of Balancing Demand and Supply in the UK’s Gas Networks, 1795 – Present | Drupal ( 

Blue, S. Shove, E. & Forman, P.J. (2020) "Conceptualising Flexibility: Challenging representations of time and society in the energy sector" Time and Society DOI:

Anderson, B. Wilson, H. Forman, P.J. Heslop, J. Ormerod, E. & Maestri, G. (2020) “Brexit: Modes of Uncertainty and Futures at an Impasse” Transactions of the Institute of British Geographers DOI:


Forman, P.J. (2019) “Security and the Subsurface: Natural Gas and the Visualisation of Possibility Spaces” Geopolitics DOI: 10.1080/14650045.2018.1513918

Forman, P.J. (2019) “Materiality, New Materialisms” In: Kobayashi, A. (Ed) The International Encyclopedia of Human Geography (Second Edition)

Forman, P.J. & Shove, E. (2019) “The Fixity of Flexibility” [Guest blog post for CREDS website] Available at: [Last accessed: 08/01/20]


Forman, P.J. (2018) “Circulations beyond Nodes: (In)Securities Along the Pipeline” Mobilities 

Tironi, M., Hird, M., Forman, P.J., Simonetti, C., & Freiburger, N. (2018) “Inorganic becomings: Situating the Anthropocene in Puchuncaví” Environmental Humanities

Forman, P.J. (2018) Book review: Global Undergrounds: Exploring Cities Within. Edited by Paul Dobraszczyk, Carlos Lopez Galviz, & Bradley Garrett [Reviewed for the Urban Geographies Research Group]


Hughes, S.M. & Forman, P.J. (2017) “A Material Politics of Citizenship: The Governance of Circulating Materials from UK Immigration Removal Centres” Citizenship Studies 

Forman, P.J. (2017) “Hard to Follow Things: Natural Gas” [Online] Guest blog post for Available at: <> [Last accessed: 22/08/17]

Expertise related to UN Sustainable Development Goals

In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This person’s work contributes towards the following SDG(s):

  • SDG 7 - Affordable and Clean Energy
  • SDG 10 - Reduced Inequalities
  • SDG 11 - Sustainable Cities and Communities

Education/Academic qualification

Geography, PhD, Securing Natural Gas: Entity-Attentive Security Research, Durham University

1 Jan 201323 May 2017

Award Date: 30 Jun 2017

Geography, MA (Hons), Social Research Methods, Durham University

1 Sept 201110 Oct 2012

Award Date: 11 Jan 2013

Geography, BA (Hons), Geography, Durham University

6 Oct 200824 Jun 2011

Award Date: 28 Jun 2011

External positions

Royal Geographical Society with IBG

1 Sept 20201 Sept 2023


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