Dr Anne Coles is a social geographer, who has lived and worked widely in the Middle East. From 1968 to 1971, while in Dubai, she became fascinated by its windtowers. She was a senior social development adviser in Britain’s Department for International Development from 1994-1998 and has chaired two development NGO’s. Before her recent retirement she was a research associate at the International Gender Studies Centre, Oxford University. Her research interests include migration, people’s responses to harsh environments, public health and domestic/ vernacular architecture. Her recent publications include The Routledge Handbook of Gender and Development (as co-editor and contributor) (Routledge 2015).