After studying Geography and the Middle East at the School of Oriental and African Studies and the University of Durham in the early 1980s, Richard Schofield spent a couple of years running an oriental bookshop in London, simultaneously writing up his master's thesis on the Shatt al Arab (Iran-Iraq) dispute for publication.
Thereafter, he collaborated with Gerald Blake in a major archival research project on Arabian Boundaries, the success of which allowed for the institution of Durham’s International Boundaries Research Unit in 1989.
Richard then joined the SOAS Geography Department part-time to help run its Geopolitics Research Centre. Most other time was spent in dusty government archives, either compiling lengthy and detailed documentary anthologies on Britain’s colonial boundaries or researching historical aspects of live boundary cases in International Law.
Richard founded the highly-rated 'Geopolitics (and International Boundaries)' journal in 1996 and took up a full-time post during 1997 in SOAS Geography to launch and convene the master's programme in International Boundary Studies. This survives at King’s in modified and expanded form to constitute Geography’s well-regarded Geopolitics, Territory and Security programme.
- Territorial policy in decolonisation
- The unique geopolitics of island sovereignty dispute
- Delimitation questions in complex territorial dispute settlement
- Historiography in boundary and border geographies
- Multi-disciplinarity and dispute settlement
Richard has long been interested in the treatment of international boundaries and territorial definition within political geography and the social sciences more generally, as reflected in his founding of the 'Geopolitics' journal in 1996.
He is a specialist in archival sources for the study of boundary and territorial disputes, particularly those of the Arabian Peninsula and Persian Gulf, the regional focus of his research interests.
Richard welcomes students looking to research:
- The evolution of disputed international boundaries
- Imperial territorial policy and boundary-making.
- Emerging territorialities at the state and sub-state level
- Developing borderland geographies
- Territorial disputes as symbols of national and regional rivalries
- Political geography/Geopolitics of the Arabian Peninsula/Persian Gulf
See Richard's research profile
JoffeÌ, E. G. H. . (ed.) & Schofield, R. N. (ed.), 2021, Abingdon, Oxon: Routledge. 217 p. (History and society in the Islamic world) Research output: Book/Report - Book
Joffé, G. & Schofield, R., 26 Oct 2020, Geographic Realities in the Middle East and North Africa: State, Oil and Agriculture. Taylor and Francis, p. 1-7 7 p. Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceeding - Chapter
Schofield, R., 26 Oct 2020, Geographic Realities in the Middle East and North Africa: State, Oil and Agriculture. Taylor and Francis, p. 11-24 14 p. Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceeding - Chapter
Agnew, J., Dalby, S., Flint, C., Mamadouh, V., Schofield, R. & Newman, D., 19 Jun 2020, (Accepted/In press) In : Geopolitics. Research output: Contribution to journal - Article
Schofield, R., 26 May 2020, In : Mediterranean Politics. 25, 3, p. 394-411 18 p. Research output: Contribution to journal - Article. DOIs: https://doi.org/10.1080/13629395.2020.1743574
Schofield, R., 15 Jun 2018, In : Egypte/Monde Arabe. 18, 2, p. 149-161 13 p. Research output: Contribution to journal - Article. DOIs: https://doi.org/10.4000/ema.4279
Schofield, R., 25 Sep 2017, In : Geopolitics. p. 1-24 24 p. Research output: Contribution to journal - Article. DOIs: https://doi.org/10.1080/14650045.2017.1374246
Schofield, R. N., 24 Oct 2016, Orients Strategiques: Les Frontieres dans le Monde Arabe: Quel Enjeux de Pouvoirs Aux Marges des Etats. 4 ed. Paris: L'Harmattan, Vol. 2016. p. 61 75 p. Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceeding - Chapter
Schofield, R. N., 1 Jan 2016, From the Gulf to Ararat: Imperial Boundary Making in the Late Ottoman Empire by G.E. Hubbard. Hubbard, G. E. (ed.). I. B. Tauris, p. xii-xxiii 11 p. Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceeding - Chapter
Schofield, R. N., 1 Jan 2017, Routledge Library Edition ed. London: Routledge. 256 p. (History of the Middle East) Research output: Book/Report - Book