I started my lectureship in Environmental Geography at the University of Stirling in June 2015, where I specialise in energy geographies.
Prior to moving to Stirling, I completed my PhD in Physical Geography at the University of Leicester, where I stayed on as a postdoctoral researcher working on a number of interdisciplinary research projects that spanned the social and natural sciences. My first role was as a researcher and teaching developer in the HEFCE-funded Spatial Literacy in Learning and Teaching CETL, investigating the pedagogies of mobile Geographical Information Science (GIS) and Virtual Reality with particular focus on human/environmental applications. Recognising the value of interdisciplinary approaches, I then diversified and engaged with more social sciences projects where I developed my qualitative research skills.
Some of the larger projects I’ve worked on are: ‘Adaptations to Rural Communities through Living with Climate Change’ (RCUK Rural Economy and Land Use Programme); ‘New Urbanisms, New Citizens: Children and Young People’s Everyday Life and Participation in Sustainable Communities’ (ESRC), Affective Digital Histories: Recreating De-Industrial Places, 1970s to the Present’ (AHRC) and ‘Rural Hybrid Energy Enterprise Systems’ (EPSRC Bridging the Urban Rural Divide programme).
I am also a Fellow of the Royal Geographical Society, the RGS-IBG Energy Geographies Research Group Communications Officer, and an advisor for the International Energy Justice Council.
My broad research interests focus around the socio-technical assemblages of renewable energy systems, public perceptions and reaction to energy transitions, sustainable housing and behaviours, energy justice, and the social challenges associated with the development of the shale gas industry. I specialise in using mixed method approaches in my research, including GIS analysis, participatory mapping, mobile and social data collection, quantitative analysis and a range of social science techniques to assess socio-environmental interactions of the energy landscape.
My current research activities include:
‘Beyond the ‘energy silo’: exploring energy challenges and their interactions with food, water and health in rural India and Scotland’ (Scottish Alliance for Geosciences, Environment & Society PECRE award). 2016
‘Getting the right spatial and social mix: improved methods for planning community renewable energy facilities’ (SECURE feasibility project, EPSRC). 2015
Comber A & Dickie J (2016) Getting the right spatial mix: Optimising the size, type and location of renewable energy facilities. In: Bailly J, Griffith D & Josselin D (eds.) Proceedings of Spatial Accuracy 2016. 12th Spatial Accuracy International Symposium 2016, Montpellier, France, 05.07.2016-08.07.2016. Montpellier, France, pp. 185-189