Latest stories from the Department

MSc REEF 2014 cohort

MSc REEF ranked number 1

We're delighted that the MSc Real Estate Economics and Finance programme has been ranked as the top Real Estate Management programme in the world by Eduniversal Best Masters Ranking 2017. See the rankings.


Art and the City

Dr Julie Ren's new co-edited volume 'Art and the City: Worlding the Discussion through a Critical Artscape' is due out at the end of May 2017. The book presents a global perspective on the relationship between art and the city. It extends thinking on contemporary arts practices in the urban and political context of protest and social resilience and offers the prism of a ‘critical artscape’ in which to view the urgent interaction of arts and the urban politic. Read more. 

Vaishnavi Thirumala Gowri Shankar

Masters students' RGS with IBG grant success

MSc Urbanisation and Development student Vaishnavi Thirumala Gowri Shankar, together with two students from LSE Cities (Ravi Anand Loknath and Larissa Miranda-Heinisch) have been successful in their team bid for an RGS with IBG Geographical Fieldwork Grant to assist them with their dissertations. Under the umbrella of ‘Interpreting Informal Human Geographies’, the team will undertake fieldwork in an informal settlement in São Paulo, Brazil.


Drivers of employment generation and social inclusion in the EU

Prof Andrés Rodríguez-Pose and PhD candidate Marco Di Cataldo have written a new piece for VoxEU’s policy portal: ‘Drivers of employment generation and social inclusion in the EU’. Andrés and Marco write that EU development strategies are aimed at producing growth with “a strong emphasis on job creation and poverty reduction”. Read more.

Mara Nogueira

PhD candidate's AAG success

Congratulations to Mara Nogueira, a final year PhD candidate, whose paper ‘Conserving the (segregated) City: The Role of the Middle-Classes in Shaping Urban Space the Case of Belo Horizonte, Brazil’ was awarded the winner of the 2017 LASG Best Paper at PhD level. The award was given by the Latin America Specialty Group of the American Association of Geographers at this year's AAG annual conference. Well done Mara!

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Winter/Spring Department Newsletter

Our Winter/Spring 2017 newsletter is out now! It has been an exciting time for the Department with several high profile events, awards, blogs and more. Read the newsletter.


Department of Geography and Environment ranked third in the world

We have once again performed impressively in the QS World University Rankings, reaching the top 3 spot globally for Geography! Read more.

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LSE Geography and Environment is top 4 in university tables

The LSE Department of Geography and Environment has been ranked 4th in the UK in the latest Guardian subject tables. This follows success in the QS World University rankings, which put the Department 3rd internationally. The Department was ranked 4th in the Complete University Guide 2017 subject tables. A range of measures contribute to the rankings, including student satisfaction, academic reputation and career prospects.

View the Guardian table / View the QS table/ View the Complete University Guide table.


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Yimin Zhao

PhD candidate wins AAG prize

Congratulations to Yimin Zhao, a final year PhD candidate, whose paper "Space as Method: Field Sites and Encounters in Beijing’s Green Belts” was ranked third place in this year’s China Geography Specialty Group’s student paper competition. The competition was held as part of the annual conference of the American Association of Geographers (AAG). Well done Yimin!


How can we achieve inclusive growth?

Dr Neil Lee talks to Centre for Cities, discussing what inclusive growth actually means, how it can be achieved and whether it is even desirable. Listen to the podcast.


How stubborn ‘nail houses’ take a stand against China’s rapid urbanisation

Dr Hyun Bang Shin has written an article for The Conversation on how households in China are defying state-ordered evictions and demolitions by refusing to vacate their properties. Read more


Investment in transport infrastructure is not always conducive to stronger economic performance

Drawing on a recent study, Prof Riccardo CrescenziMarco Di Cataldo and Prof Andrés Rodríguez-Pose write that in contexts marked by weak and inefficient governments and widespread corruption, different types of road investments often yield low or no economic returns. Read more.


What Works Centre for Local Economic Growth awarded funding for Brexit study

The What Works Centre for Local Economic Growth (one of our associated research centres) has been awarded funding from the LSE Knowledge Exchange and Impact Fund to work with a small number of local authorities and LEPs to consider the impact of Brexit on their local economic growth, and how they can respond most effectively. Read more. 


Prof Eric Neumayer on terrorism and tourism

New research from Professor Eric Neumayer finds that attacks on tourists by Islamic State are deterring people from travelling to all Muslim countries. Read more


Dr Neil Lee contributes to PPIW Report Publication

Dr Neil Lee has contributed to a new study report funded by the PPIW and ESRC. It demonstrates that the sector in which an individual works has a significant impact on their income but that the level of local demand for labour is also important. Read more


Prof Simona Iammarino appointed Publication Committee member of the RSA

Prof Simona Iammarino has become a Publication Committee member of the Regional Studies Association. Working with its international membership, the RSA enables the highest standard of policy debate to be carried out on issues of theoretical development and empirical analysis. 


Dr Charles Palmer and Francisco Fontes on Deforestation in Brazil 

Dr Charles Palmer and PhD Student Francisco Fontes have written a blog post for the LSE Business Review: 'How changes in the prices of milk and beef affect deforestation in Brazil'. When prices increase, producers who are far from the market clear forest to make room for new pasture, write Francisco and Charles. Read more


National University of Singapore Exhange

Do Young Oh, a final year PhD student in the Department of Geography and Environment, has written about his experience at the National University of Singapore for his doctoral research. The School runs Partnership PhD Mobility Bursaries programmes that allow a small number of research students to visit overseas partner institutions as part of doctoral training and field research. Read more.


Geography undergraduate's Study Abroad experience

Lydia Luk, a final year BA Geography student, has written about her experience of having applied for the Sciences Po exchange programme and student life in Paris. Read more.


BA Geography Student's LSE Groups Research Project wins Booth Prize

At the end of the Michaelmas Term, the LSE Research Festival announced a number of category winners, and Sally Park, a final year BA Geography student, was one of the joint winners of the Booth Prize. In this blog, Sally reflects on her experience of working with her colleagues on a project that was part of the LSE GROUPS initiative. Read more


Will the politics of threat carry over into post-conflict Colombia? 

Dr Austin Zeiderman has written a blog post for the LSE Latin America and Caribbean Centre focusing on the politics of urban security in Bogotá. Read more.


MSc LED Forum 2017

Organised annually by students on MSc Local Economic Development, the LED Forum is an occasion to learn and work on the most current pressing local issues. This year's theme is 'Inequality and Shocks'. Read more.


Prof Michael Storper awarded Distinguished Scholarship Honors by AAG

Prof Michael Storper is to be awarded the Distinguished Scholarship Honors by the American Association of Geographers for his outstanding record of scholarly achievement and innovative contributions to the fields of global economic development and the geography of urban and regional systems. Read more.

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Prof Paul Cheshire awarded CBE

Congratulations to Prof Paul Cheshire, Emeritus Professor of Economic Geography, who has been awarded a CBE for services to Economics and Housing in the 2017 New Year's Honours. 


Success for MSc LED students at Hult Prize quarterfinals

A team of LED students has won the LSE Quarterfinals for the Hult Prize. Their next step is to implement a pilot project before the Regional Finals in March.

Team Atlas, otherwise known as Aleena, Gaelle, Jon and Sania, bring together business acumen, personal experience, academic excellence and a very novel idea to this year’s President’s Challenge. They are equipped with a strong understanding of economics, finance, and law, and are confident in their ability to create a scalable and sustainable method to tackle the refugee crisis. Good luck team Atlas!


Prof Gareth Jones co-convening LMU conference

Gareth co-organised the conference 'From Stigma to Brand: Commodifying and Aestheticizing Urban Poverty and Violence' at LMU in Munich from 16-18 February 2017. Dr Romola Sanyal also took part, speaking on 'Walking the Slum: Sensing urban poverty in Mumbai' Read more.



Geography academics at Brussels Brexit event

Prof Simona Iammarino and Dr Andrea Ascani took part in a Brussels event organised by LSE on 8 December 2016 entitled 'Britain and Europe: Towards Brexit?'. Read more.


Riccardo Crescenzi wins 2016 Talented Young Italians Award for outstanding contribution to Research and Innovation in the UK

Prof Crescenzi has won the 2016 Talented Young Italians Prize, awarded by the Italian Chamber of Commerce and Industry for the UK and the Italian Embassy in the UK. Eight awards were conferred in four categories, with Riccardo receiving the award for ‘Research and Innovation’, in recognition of his outstanding research accomplishments. The award aims "to bring to public attention the individuals who have succeeded in their endeavour in the UK, keeping at the same time a link with Italy and fostering the exchanges between the two countries.”

The awards ceremony took place on 10 November 2016 during an event organised by The Italian Chamber of Commerce and Industry for the UK and the Italian Embassy in London under the patronage of H.E. Pasquale Terracciano, the Italian Ambassador in the UK. Read more.

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Ben Groom advises Office for National Statistics

Dr Ben Groom has been advising the Office for National Statistics (ONS) on the appropriate social discount rates to use for the Natural Capital Accounts (NCA). The NCA are being compiled as part of the remit of the UK Natural Capital Committee (NCC) in a collaboration between the ONS and the Department for Environment Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA). The project aims go beyond the standard measurements of GDP and make environmental considerations and natural capital central to the measurement of economic performance in the UK.

Details of the project can be found here. The report on social discount rates can be found here.


Prof Gareth Jones at House of Lords reception

Gareth Jones attended a reception at the House of Lords hosted by the Rt Hon Sir John Major KG CH and Lord Loomba of Moor Park CBE in celebration of the United Nations General Comment on Children in Street Situations. With an audience of NGO and business groups, Gareth was interviewed about the contribution of research to assist policy-making aimed at improving the lives of children. In collaboration with the University of Dundee and the International Consortium for Street Children, it is hoped that LSE can support an initiative to monitor the General Comment which aims to hold governments accountable across the world.


Michael Storper contributes to European Commission/UN-HABITAT report  

Michael has contributed to chapter 3 of the report on 'The State of European Cities 2016'. His chapter notes a big division between high-income cities and middle-income cities. The latter face a "middle income trap" because they are more expensive than the low-income cities (for attracting basic economic activities) and yet they don't have the technology and skills endowments of the very high-income cities. In Europe this makes many of them candidates for potential stagnation.

The chapter also shows that cities are generally more productive and higher-income than their national economies. In the case of Europe's superstar cities, they are often much wealthier than their national economies as a whole. This leads to issues of uneven development parallel to the USA. Read the report.


Virtual issue on urban China released by top tier journal 

Hyun Bang Shin's article "Economic transition and speculative urbanisation in China: Gentrification versus dispossession", which was published in the Urban Studies journal in 2016, has been included in a Virtual Special Issue entitled "From an emerging market to a multifaceted urban society: Urban China studies" edited by Shenjing He and Junxi Qian. Read the full text.


Charlie Palmer at Workshop on Environmental and Natural Resources Conservation

Charlie was invited to give a presentation at the Workshop on Environmental and Natural Resources Conservation, organised by the French National Institute for Agricultural Research, which was held in Montpellier on 15-16 November 2016. The talk was titled “Was Von Thünen Right? Cattle Intensification and Deforestation in Brazil”.


Spotlight on...Clare Barnes

LSE Fellow in Environment Dr Clare Barnes gives us her first impressions of LSE and tells us about her research on the governance of natural resources in the Global South. Read more.


50 years of RUPS

On Friday 28 October 2016 we celebrated the 50th year of the MSc in Regional and Urban Planning Studies. Over the programme’s history we have educated over 600 students from all around the world. Many students have gone on to make significant contributions in the fields of planning, architecture and academia. The reunion was an occasion to come together and celebrate the programme and the long-lasting friendships it has inspired. Read more.

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Ben Groom awarded UCSIA teaching chair

Dr Ben Groom has been awarded the UCSIA teaching chair between 22 and 24 November 2016. He will speak on 'Preferring the present or the future' at the University of Antwerp: read more.


The Legacy of Peace: public lecture by Colombian President

On 2 November Prof Gareth Jones chaired an event at LSE with Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos Calderón, winner of the 2016 Nobel Peace Prize. The podcast of the event is now online.


Excellence in Education Award Winners 

The teaching and education achievements of several of our staff were celebrated in a reception hosted by Prof Julia Black and Prof Paul Kelly on Wednesday 19 October 2016. The reception marked the award of the LSE’s inaugural Excellence in Education Awards as well as the 2016 Teaching Promotion Awards.

We are delighted that Prof Susana Mourato, Dr Nancy Holman, Dr Olmo Silva and Dr Romola Sanyal all won Excellence in Education Awards, while Prof Christian Hilber and Prof Riccardo Crescenzi both won Teaching Promotion Awards.

Designed to support the School’s aspiration of creating ‘a culture where excellence in teaching is valued and rewarded on a level with excellence in research’ (LSE Strategy 2020), the LSE Excellence in Education Awards are made on the recommendations of Heads of Department to staff who have demonstrated outstanding teaching contribution and educational leadership in their departments.  In turn, the Teaching Promotion Awards are given to faculty who made a significant educational contribution to LSE, upon their promotion to Professor.


Prof Simona Iammarino at Gran Sasso Science Institute event

Simona Iammarino gave a lecture on 'Multinational enterprises, innovation & geography: global impacts on local economic development'. Read more.


Dr Hyun Bang Shin at University of Toronto event

Hyun Bang Shin was the keynote speaker at an event at the University of Toronto entitled 'Speculative Urbanization in East Asia: People, Power, and Politics'. Read more.

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Geography and Environment Autumn Newsletter

In this issue of the Department Newsletter we bring you student and staff news, new articles, new books and events.

Past issues: Summer 2016 / Spring 2016.


Strong government institutions more important than geography for economic development in the EU

A new study, co-authored by Prof Andrés Rodríguez-Pose, has found that strong government institutions are more influential for economic growth than geographic conditions. Read more.


Reassessing economic development policies for regions and cities

Simona Iammarino, Andrés Rodríguez-Pose and Michael Storper took part in a major conference at LSE and have contributed to a report which will inform the next round of EU Cohesion Policy. The conference was jointly organised with the European Commission, Directorate-General for Regional and Urban Policy, and brought together academics and policymakers from Europe and North America to assess urban and regional economic development theory, evidence and policy. Read the report.

Simona, Andrés and Michael gave presentations on the report at the European Week of Regions and Cities in Brussels, 10-13 October 2016. See the photos.


LSE Report on Multinationals, Local Firms and Economic Development in the Lazio Region

Riccardo Crescenzi and Andrés Rodríguez-Pose were keynote speakers at the launch of the LSE Report on “Multinationals, Local Firms and Economic Development in the Lazio Region” promoted and organised by Lazio Innova and the Regional Government of Lazio in Italy. Event website.


First-time buyers priced out by the 'accidental landlord'

First-time buyers have been priced out of the ownership market by richer households who keep their starter homes for renting out when trading up, according to new research by Dr Felipe Carozzi. Read more.

Cheng Keat

Home owners prepared to pay a premium for lower traffic congestion

London homeowners are prepared to pay a premium to live in inner city areas where the congestion zone applies, new research by doctoral candidate Cheng Keat Tang shows. Read more.

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Prof David Jones celebrates 50 years

On 21 September 2016 staff were treated to a one-off talk by Prof David Jones, outlining the Department's varied history. We were also celebrating David's 50th year in the Department! See photos from the talk.


Prof Christine Whitehead wins Excellence in Planning Research award

The award is made by the Royal Town Planning Institute following peer review of the best of the year’s planning research. It has recognised high quality and policy relevance of the work on planning obligations led by Emeritus Professor Tony Crook, Prof John Henneberry of the University of Sheffield, and Prof Christine Whitehead, Professor Emeritus of Housing Economics at LSE. Read more.


A 21st Century Metropolitan Green Belt

New report by academics in Geography & Environment explores the purpose of the Metropolitan Green Belt in the context of contemporary housing need and urban development planning in the region.Read the report.


Success at LSE Teaching Awards

Many of our Geography & Environment colleagues won prizes at the LSE Teaching Awards 2016.

Well done to: Austin Zeiderman, Neil Lee, Sefi Roth, Riccardo Crescenzi, Christian Hilber, Joel Gill, John Wilkie, Julius Andersson, Emanuele Campiglio and Alex Jaax! Read more.


Influencing the content of five landmark global development reports 

Department of Geography and Environment expertise on approaches to economic growth have influenced OECD, World Bank and European Commission publications. Featured academics from the department are Andrés Rodríguez-Pose, Henry Overman and Michael Storper. Read the impact case study.