Dr Austin  Zeiderman

Dr Austin Zeiderman

Assistant Professor of Urban Geography

Department of Geography and Environment

020 7955 6831
Room No
STC 6.01d, St Clement's Building, LSE
Office Hours
Tuesdays: 14:30-16:00 (Book via LSE For You)
Connect with me

About me

Austin Zeiderman is an interdisciplinary scholar who specializes in the cultural and political dimensions of urbanization, development, and the environment, with a specific focus on Latin America. He holds a PhD in Anthropology from Stanford University as well as a Master of Environmental Science degree from Yale University and a bachelor’s degree in Economics from Colgate University.

His book, Endangered City: The Politics of Security and Risk in Bogotá (2016, Duke UP), focuses on how security and risk shape the relationship between citizens and the state in the self-built settlements of the urban periphery. Austin is also beginning a new research project on urban, environmental, and infrastructural transformations motivated by the promise of a post-conflict future in Colombia.

Aspects of Austin’s research have appeared in a range of venues, such as Antipode, Environment and Planning A, Public Culture, American Ethnologist, openDemocracy, and the Guardian.

He has received fellowships and awards from the Fulbright Program, the Wenner-Gren Foundation, the National Science Foundation, and the Mellon Foundation.

From 2012 to 2014, Austin coordinated the Urban Uncertainty project at LSE Cities, where he remains a Research Associate.

Raised in Philadelphia, he has previously worked on urban and environmental issues in Baltimore and San Francisco.

 Get to know Austin a little more through our Spotlight series.


cities; colonial and postcolonial history; development; disaster; environment; ethnography; globalization; law; race; rights; risk; science and technology; security; social theory; the state; uncertainty; urban governance; urban politics; urbanism


Spanish [Spoken: Fluent, Written: Fluent]

Research areas

  • Cities and urbanism
  • Urban politics, governance and the state
  • Security and risk
  • Rights, citizenship and democracy
  • Urban infrastructures, ecologies and environments
  • Colonial and postcolonial history
  • Housing, resettlement and displacement
  • Ethnographic and historical methods
  • Race and ethnicity
  • Latin America
  • Science and technology
  • Urban and social theory

Selected publications

  • Zeiderman, Austin, Kaker, Sobia Ahmad, Silver, Jonathan and Wood, Astrid (2015) Uncertainty and Urban LifePublic Culture 27 (2): 281–304.


Countries and regions

Colombia; Latin America