UCLA geographer Adam Moore receives book award
Associate Professor of Geography Adam Moore. (Photo: Oliver Chien/ UCLA.)

UCLA geographer Adam Moore receives book award

Adam Moore, a member of the International Institute's teaching faculty, has won the American Association of Geographer's 2019 Global Book Award for his latest publication, "Empire's Labor."

UCLA International Institute, March 9, 2020 —  The UCLA International Institute congratulates Adam Moore for receiving the 2019 Global Book Award for Public Understanding of Geography from the American Association of Geographers (AAG).

Moore, who has a joint appointment to the institute and the department of geography at UCLA, garnered the honor for his most recent publication, "Empire's Labor: The Global Army that Supports U.S. Wars" (Cornell, 2019). The award is given for a book written or co-authored by a geographer that conveys most powerfully the nature and importance of geography to the non-academic world.

Announced by the AAG in late February, the award will be officially conferred at the association's annual conference in April 2020 in Denver, Colorado. An excerpt from the AAG announcement follows:

"'Empire’s Labor' conveys powerfully the nature and importance of geography to audiences beyond academic geography. Clearly written and accessible to readers without training in specialist theory and vocabulary, the book nevertheless shows how extensive fieldwork and a critical geographical imagination can re-map the abstract and violently inhuman logistics of war-fighting in a profoundly humanizing way. As former AAG President John Agnew noted: “[Moore’s book]… displays the very best qualities of contemporary geographical scholarship in its synthesis of first-person experiences, wide reading of specialized literature across a range of fields, and a sophisticated but clearly expressed theoretical framing, particularly with its emphasis on the transfer of risk onto the shoulders of foreigners even as the objectives pursued are defined in Washington, DC.

Further, the prominent use of maps in the book helps to document a global geography of military infrastructure that is commonly ignored or obscured. What is especially impressive is the way in which 'Empire’s Labor' conveys the human geographies and voices of the workers who toil in ‘someone else’s war’. This is a book that geographers will be able
to recommend to non-geographers with pride."


Cornell University Press describes the book as follows: "Focusing on workers from the Philippines and Bosnia...., Moore explains the rise of large-scale [military] logistics outsourcing since the end of the Cold War; describes the networks, infrastructures, and practices that span the spaces through which people, information, and goods circulate; and reveals the experiences of foreign workers, from the hidden dynamics of labor activism on bases, to the economic and social impacts these jobs have on their families and the communities they hail from."