Dr Robin Smith

robin smith web

Postdoctoral Affiliate

Robin is a Postdoctoral Researcher at the Institute of Cultural Anthropology and Development Sociology at Leiden University, the Netherlands, on the ERC consolidator project Food citizens? Collective food procurement in European cities (www.foodcitizens.eu) and a Postdoctoral Associate of the Institute of Social and Cultural Anthropology at the University of Oxford.

Her doctoral research, undertaken at the University of Oxford thanks to the support of the Clarendon Fund of OUP, analyzed how morals, values, and debt shape business relationships in the Croatian wine industry. Articles and a book manuscript proposal related to this research are under development.

Robin is interested in relationships in local food systems, farmer politics, the translation of terroir in post-socialist contexts, financialization in post-socialist agri-food sectors, economic history of Yugoslavia, alternative notions of citizenship, the role of debt in society, supermarket politics in Europe, business associations and cooperatives in post-socialism, and all things related to wine.

Additionally, she holds a MSc in Social Anthropology from the University of Oxford, MA in Politics, Security, and Integration from University College London’s School of Slavonic and East European Studies, and a BA in Politics from the University of California, Santa Cruz. She has also volunteered with Peace Corps in the Republic of Moldova working with family wineries on local marketing initiatives and worked at international development organizations focused on agribusiness development, which greatly informed her subsequent research at Oxford.


2018. ‘An economy of trust: chains of debts and favours in rural Istrian business relationships’, Journal of the Anthropological Society of Oxford.

2018. ‘Solastalgia in Istria, Croatia’, in Andrea Boscoboinik, Hana Horáková, and Robin Smith (eds.), Utopia and neoliberalism: ethnographies of rural spaces, Berlin: Lit Verlag.

Selected conference papers

‘Chains of debt in Croatia’s agribusiness sector’. Co-convenor and presenter on the panel: Corporate lives after socialism: theory and ethnography, at the Association of Slavic, East European, and Eurasian Studies (ASEEES), Boston, MA, Dec. 2018.

‘Wine is alive: local notions and interpretations of terroir in Istria, Croatia’. Panel: Wine mobilities: tensions in crafting wine stories. EASA, Aug. 2018.

‘Broker capitalism and democratic discontent: farmer protest in Istria, Croatia’. Purposeful Agency and Governance: A Bridgeable Gap, the University of Kent, June 2016.

‘Tax reform and informality in rural Istrian business communities: business values confronting a bureaucratizing state’. Precarious Economy: Informality and Entrepreneurship at the Bottom of the Pyramid, University of Sussex, Dec. 2015.

‘The influence of EU agricultural legislation on traditional farming practices and rural trading relationships in Istria’s wine industry’, SIEF, Zagreb, June 2015.

‘Agrotourisms and the marketization of rural Istrian identity through food’. Past, Present, Future: Identity in Flux, University of Pula, Croatia, May 2015.

Convenor for panels

‘The sociality of taxes: state-citizen imaginaries’. Association of Social Anthropologists of the UK and Commonwealth (ASA), 2018.

‘Re-inventing European food: pasts and futures of agricultural imaginaries’. European Association of Social Anthropologists (EASA), 2018.

Other websites
Academia.edu: https://oxford.academia.edu/RobinSmith 
Research Gate: https://www.researchgate.net/profile/Robin_Smith37 



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