LSE Cities

LSE Cities

An international centre carrying out research, education, advisory and outreach activities in London and abroad.

About LSE Cities

LSE Cities is an international centre at the London School of Economics and Political Science that carries out research, graduate and executive education and outreach activities in London and abroad.

Extending LSE’s century-old commitment to the understanding of urban society, LSE Cities investigates how complex urban systems are responding to the pressures of growth, change and globalisation, with new infrastructures of design and governance that both complement and threaten social and environmental equity. It is one of a small number of research centres that contribute to LSE’s reputation as one of the foremost social science universities in the world.

LSE Cities studies how people and cities interact in a rapidly urbanising world, focusing on how the design of cities impacts on society, culture and the environment. With the support of the Alfred Herrhausen Gesellschaft, the centre builds on the interdisciplinary work of the Urban Age Programme, an international investigation of cities around the world.

LSE Cities hosts a wide range of international conferences, public lecture series, seminars and awards that span the core of our research goals, and works to consolidate a growing network of urban experts.

Our research

LSE Cities’ research is divided into three research units. These are focused on improving the theoretical and interdisciplinary knowledge base on urban development and advancing research in key knowledge areas by engaging with education in city governance, management, planning and design.

Cities, Space and Society

The shape of cities impacts on culture, health and well-being, and our ability to prosper economically. Insight into the impact of space provides opportunity to design more inclusive, resilient and sustainable built environments.

Cities and the Environment

This unit better understands how the design of cities, in particular transport mobility, urban form, resource efficiency and technology, can position cities as a solution to environmentally sustainable living.

Urban Governance

This unit investigates the links between architecture and democracy, how the relationship between metropolitan and other levels of government impacts on city design, and the impact of mega-projects on urban change.

Studying with us

Graduate Education

The Cities Programme is an innovative programme for graduate teaching and research on urban issues. The programme’s distinctive focus is on the relationship between the physical and social development of cities. The MSc City Design and Social Science is based on interdisciplinary teamwork in research-based studios led by urban academics and practitioners. It draws directly from the exceptional range of expertise within and associated with LSE Cities. The MPhil/PhD Cities doctoral research programme offers an excellent environment for innovative and interdisciplinary graduate research on cities, space, and urbanism. 

Executive Education

LSE Cities offers an Executive MSc in Cities designed for public, private and third sector leaders who want to deliver large scale change in cities and taught in five one-week blocks over 18 months. An intensive week-long summer course on London and Global Cities is available for mid and late career professionals in the public and private sectors, and tailored executive programmes for organisations such as municipalities and private firms. 

Urban Age Programme

The Urban Age Programme, jointly organised with the Alfred Herrhausen Gesellschaft, is an international investigation of the spatial and social dynamics of cities centred on regular conferences, research initiative and publications. Since 2005, over 16 conferences have been held in rapidly urbanising regions in Africa and Asia, as well as in mature urban regions in the Americas and Europe. As an event, the Urban Age catalyses the exchange of information, experiences and data across a global network of cities. Since 2005 Urban Age has studied the social and spatial dynamics of metropolitan areas such as DelhiRio de JaneiroLondonHong KongIstanbulSão PauloMumbaiJohannesburg, and New York City.

At recent conferences, national leaders such as the UK’s Prime Minister David Cameron, German Chancellor Angela Merkel and President of Mexico Vicente Fox have joined the mayors of London, Berlin, Mexico City, New Delhi, Chicago, Washington DC, Bogotá and São Paulo, and internationally renowned academics, architects and activists, to debate a wide range of urban issues.

Deutsche Bank Urban Age Award

Established in 2007, the Deutsche Bank Urban Age Award recognises projects that improve the physical conditions of communities and the lives of their residents, establishing a network of urban initiatives at the grassroots level. The first award was given out in Mumbai (2007), followed by São Paulo (2008), Istanbul (2009), Mexico City (2010), Cape Town (2012), Rio de Janeiro (2013) and Delhi (2014).

Queen’s Anniversary Prize

LSE was awarded one of the prestigious Queen’s Anniversary Prizes for Higher and Further Education for LSE Cities’ broad range of research, education and outreach activities. The Prize, which is part of the UK honours system, is given biennially to institutions across the UK, recognising excellence in a number of key academic areas which have had impact on society and the wider community. The Queen’s Anniversary Prize for 2016-2018 was awarded in recognition of LSE Cities’ work on ‘training, research and policy formulation for cities of the future and a new generation of urban leaders around the world.’



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LSE Cities, London School of Economics and Political Science, 8th Floor, Fawcett House, Clement's Inn, London, WC2A 2AE, United Kingdom