Sarah Elwood is a Professor in the Department of Geography at the University of Washington, and a faculty affiliate of the UW’s West Coast Poverty Center, Center for Studies in Demography and Ecology, and Certificate in Public Scholarship. With Vicky Lawson, she co-directs the Relational Poverty Network (RPN), a transnational interdisciplinary community of scholars collaborating to develop conceptual frameworks, research methodologies, and pedagogies for the study of relational poverty.
Elwood received her Ph.D. in Geography from the University of Minnesota and previously held faculty positions at DePaul University and the University of Arizona. Her research contributes to relational poverty studies, critical GIScience and digital geographies, visual politics and mixed methods, and urban geography. Current activities include research on poverty politics of creative activisms around homelessness, feminist and critical race theorizations of digital geographies, and a collaborative public scholarly project on horizons of critical poverty studies under emerging nationalist populisms. Her work has appeared in Progress in Human Geography, Transactions of the Institute of British Geographers, Annals of the Association of American Geographers, International Journal of Geographical Information Science, among others. She is co-editor of 3 books, Relational Poverty Politics: Forms, Struggles, Possibilities (with Victoria Lawson), Crowdsourcing Geographic Knowledge: Volunteered Geographic Information in Theory and Practice (with Daniel Sui & Michael Goodchild), and Qualitative GIS: A Mixed Methods Approach (with Meghan Cope).
Elwood's work has been supported by the National Science Foundation, Spencer Foundation, National Geographic Education Foundation, and others. Her research, teaching and community collaborations have been recognized by the University of Washington Distinguished Teaching Award, the Department of Geography’s Student Award for Faculty Excellence in Undergraduate Teaching, Sustainable Seattle’s Sustainable Community Outstanding Leadership Award, and the Richard Morrill Public Outreach Award from the AAG’s Political Geography Specialty Group.