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College of Arts & Sciences
Department of Geography

Faculty & Staff Directory

Conor M. Harrison

Assistant Professor
Department of Geography
University of South Carolina

Phone Number: (803) 576-6010
Office: Callcott 111
Curriculum vitae: Download PDF
Profile of Dr. Harrison


Conor Harrison joined the Department of Geography and the Environment and Sustainability Program in 2014 after receiving his Ph.D in geography from the University of North Carolina. He also has a Masters degree in Geography from East Carolina University, a BA in Political Science from Colgate University, and has work experience in supply chain management and consumer product distribution. Dr. Harrison was an international visiting fellow at the DEMAND Research Centre at Lancaster University in the United Kingdom in the summer of 2014.


Dr. Harrison’s research examines the relationship between energy and society, with a particular focus on political economy and power relations. His current research project traces the flows of investment capital, expertise, and technology in the ongoing energy transition to renewable energy in the Caribbean. Dr. Harrison's past research has traced the historical development of electricity supply systems and markets in the American South. This work focused on the interactions of an emerging networked infrastructure with contrasting ideas and methods of financing, governance, and ideologies of race in the American South between 1900 and 1980. Previously Dr. Harrison has examined energy poverty in rural North Carolina. Portions of his work have been published in the Annals of the Association of American GeographersGeoforum, and Local Environment. His research has been supported by the National Science Foundation, Center for Study of the American South, and the University of North Carolina.


GEOG 121 Globalization and World Regions
GEOG 313 Economic Geography
ENVR 202 Environmental Science and Policy II
ENVR 490 Energy, Society and Space

Dr. Harrison is also engaged in a project focused on improving energy literacy through student-led fieldwork at home. See details here.

Representative Publications 

Harrison, C. In press. Electric Conservatism: The Rise of North Carolina’s Conservative Power Politics.Southeastern Geographer.

Harrison, C. 2016 Race, Space, and Electric Power: Jim Crow and the 1934 North Carolina Rural Electrification Survey. Annals of the American Association of Geographers 106(4): 909-931

Thoyre, A. and C. Harrison. 2016. Introduction: Teaching energy geographies. Journal of Geography in Higher Education 40(1): 31-38.

van der Horst, D, C. Harrison, S. Staddon, G. Wood. 2016. Improving energy literacy through student-led fieldwork - at home. Journal of Geography in Higher Education 40(1): 67-76.

Harrison, C. 2016. The American South: Electric and Race in Rocky Mount, North Carolina, 1900-1935. In Luque, A and Silver, J. Energy, Power and Protest on the Urban Grid: Geographies of the Electric City. London: Routledge.

Harrison, C. 2015. Extending the 'White Way': municipal streetlighting and race, 1900-1930. Social and Cultural Geography. 16(8): 950-973.

Harrison, C. 2013. Accomplished by means which are indefensible: Electric utilities, finance, and the natural barriers to accumulation. Geoforum. 49: 173-183.

Harrison, C. 2013. The historical-geographical construction of power: Electricity in eastern North Carolina. Local Environment: The International Journal of Justice and Sustainability. 18(4): 469-486.

Harrison, C. & Popke, J. 2011. 'Because You Got to Have Heat': Fuel Poverty, Weatherization, and Landscapes of Care. Annals of the Association of American Geographers 101(4): 949-961.