South Asian Studies Institute

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Garry Fehr‌

Dr. Garry Fehr‌

Senior Faculty Associate; Director, Agricultural Centre of Excellence

Geography and the Environment

Abbotsford campus, F102

Phone: (854)-4538

email Garry


Prior to returning to school to complete my PhD, I regularly organized and participated in numerous humanitarian aid projects throughout northern British Columbia, Latin America and India. These activities were in addition to managing a business that serviced the natural resource sector and British Columbia's northern communities. I combined these interests in the pursuit of my PhD as I investigated how the globalisation of India's Non Timber Forest Product Sector was impacting rural development and the forest environment. I defended my PhD thesis and began teaching geography at UFV in 2007. The courses I teach fit within the international, environmental and cultural streams of geography.


PhD, University of Guelph, 2008

BA, Thompson Rivers University, 2003


Teaching Interests

All of the upper-level courses I teach reflect my research interests in global development studies and political ecology, with an emphasis on sustainable rural livelihoods and social justice issues. I also focus on the development of applied skills by leading study tours and coordinating student internships. The study tours take place in Mexico, India, and the interior of British Columbia.

Both local and international internships are often funded and require students to partner with NGOs that enable them to use skills in mapping, urban agriculture, community governance, capacity building, and projects that promote environmental sustainability.

Core Courses

  • GEOG 130 Regional Geography of Canada
  • GEOG 140 Human Geography
  • GEOG 312 Political Ecology
  • GEOG 340 Poverty and Development
  • GEOG 343 Transitional Societies
  • GEOG 433 Regional Geography of South Asia
  • GEOG 452 Field Methods and Techniques

Research Interests

 Currently, I am pursuing two streams of research that are connected to my previous work in the forest sector of Madhya Pradesh, India. First, I am continuing my work in India by investigating how the decentralisation of the forest sector and movement to community-based forest management combined with the rapid growth in the medicinal plant sector is being used by the state to implement new strategies of rural development. The second stream explores potential management options of British Columbia's unregulated Non Timber Forest Product sector. This research project is designed to include undergraduate students in the research process. Both of these research streams include themes of traditional ecological knowledge, common property theory and community-based resource management.

Diversifying the Agri-Food Economy in Punjab

Conducted in partnership with Prof. Kaur and Prof. Ghuman from Panjab University, Chandigarh, the purpose of this research is to identify opportunities for Canadian agribusiness to expand operations in Punjab, India. To achieve this, the research has been designed in four phases with coordinated objectives.
Objective 1 – To document the factors that are motivating Punjab State and the Central Government’s attempts to re-structure Punjab’s agricultural sector and encourage food processing. This will require the identification of the environmental, economic and policy factors contributing to declining yields and increasing vulnerability of the agriculture sector.
Objective 2 - To identify the structural factors which are constraining farmers and business from participating in the transition from staples (rice and wheat) production to a more diversified agri-food economy.
Objective 3 - To have farmers’ and business explain their reasons for resisting diversification and unwillingness to invest in food processing and added value activities.
Objective 4 - To identify current food processing policy and formulate options that will encourage agricultural diversification and opportunities for Canadian investors to partner with Indian business to establish food processing businesses in Punjab, India.



 Fehr, G. & Véron, R. (2007). Cashing in India’s forests: globalisation, reform and medicinal plants in Madhya Pradesh. In Bhabbani Nishankar (Ed.) Nationalising crisis: the political economy of public policy in contemporary India. New Delhi: Atlantic Publishers and Distributers. p. 283-307.

Véron, R. & Fehr, G. (March 2006). Unintended consequences: ex-situ cultivation of medicinal plants and forest resource depletion in Madhya Pradesh. Inform. Winrock International. India. p.3-5.

Reports and Discussion Papers
Fehr, G. (March 2005). The impact of globalisation on forest livelihoods in Madhya Pradesh. Research Report. Shastri Applied Research Project, Globalisation and the Poor: Sustaining Rural Livelihoods in India.

Fehr, G. (August 2004). The role of value chain analysis in understanding real markets in a global economy. Discussion Paper. Shastri Applied Research Project, Globalisation and the Poor: Sustaining Rural Livelihoods in India.

For more information on Garry Fehr, please visit his page on the Department of Geography website. 

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