National Teaching Fellow 2010
"Martin Haigh …impresses by his dedication to issues related to learning. … if there is any truth … that today's unconventional thinking is tomorrow's mainstream ideology, then Martin is the very personification." (Fellow Journal of Geography in Higher Education academic)
Most commonly found leading fieldwork groups through land devastated by coal-mining, Martin's teaching combines muddy-boot experiential learning with hands-on applied sustainability education and philosophy. An avid developer of out-of-classroom learning experiences, Martin's signature exercises include tree planting as a stimulant for ethical reflection upon personal responsibilities, landscape assessment exercises that require learners to see the world through the lens of a different culture or belief system, and problem-solving exercises that try to marry technical environmental interventions with the conflicting needs of local stakeholder communities.
Oxford Brookes University strongly endorses the work its teachers do in the community. Here, Martin is a leader. For 13 years he was team leader for biannual Earthwatch-funded field camps that empowered graduate adult learners with the capacity to rebuild damaged lands. The field demonstration sites he created have been used by generations of undergraduate and postgraduate learners. Martin's works in Wales and the Balkans are recognised by awards from the University of Forestry, Bulgaria, and the World Association of Soil and Water Conservation.
For six years, Martin was Co-Editor of the Journal of Geography in Higher Education (JGHE), which leads the world's Geography-discipline's drive toward better learning and teaching, and which Martin helped steer toward exploration of sustainability, internationalisation and global citizenship.
On campus, Martin helped embed course evaluation in the 1980s, then the cause of education for sustainability for which he was awarded a University Teaching Fellowship in 2003. Currently, he helps lead the University's Centre for Internationalisation of the Curriculum and Networking.
Martin teaches environmental management, Gaia, field research, and ethical Geography. Previously, he taught at the universities of Chicago and Oklahoma and Jawaharlal Nehru University India. He is much involved in education for sustainability outreach among Britain's Hindu community and, equally, to the importation of perspectives from Britain's Indian minorities.
In 2008, Martin's contribution to learning and teaching was recognised by a Senior Fellowship of the Higher Education Academy.
Professor of Geography & University Teaching Fellow
Oxford Brookes University