Professor Vernon  Henderson

Professor Vernon Henderson

School Professor of Economic Geography

Department of Geography and Environment

Room No
STC 506b St Clement's Building, LSE
Office Hours
Wednesdays 14.15- 15.45
Key Expertise
Urbanization developing countries, Infrastructure policy, Land use policy

About me

J. Vernon Henderson joined the London School of Economics in September 2013 as School Professor of Economic Geography, having previously been Eastman Professor of Political Economy at Brown University, USA.

His research focuses on urbanization in developing countries, looking both within and across cities and regions. He is the co-PI of a major research project on urbanization policy in Africa, as well as globally, situated at LSE and Oxford. His current research looks at topics such as expressway development and city growth in China, the dynamics of investment in the built environment in cities, how colonial legacy affects sprawl and the spatial layout of cities, and the impact of democratization in Africa on city growth and health and education outcomes across the urban political hierarchy. 

His work is published in journals such as the American Economic ReviewJournal of Political EconomyReview of Economic StudiesScience and Journal of Development Economics. He is co-editor of the Journal of Urban Economics and the Handbook of Regional and Urban Economics, and serves on a number of editorial boards. He is a founder and past President of the Urban Economics Association. 

Over the years, he has worked with governments in Asia and Africa directly or indirectly through institutions such as the World Bank or the McKinsey Global Institute on formulating urban policies.

View Professor Henderson's CV.

Expertise Details

Economic geography; Regional economics; Spatial and economic development; Urban economics; Urbanisation

Selected publications

  • “Urbanization and the geography of development in countries” in Rethinking Cities: toward shared prosperity, E. Glaeser and A. Joshi-Ghani (eds.) Oxford University Press, 2015
  • “Measuring Economic Growth from Outer Space,’ with Adam Storeygard and David Weil, American Economic Review, 2012, 102, 994-1028.
  • “Exclusionary Policies in Urban Development,” with Leo Feler Journal of Urban Economics, 2011, 69, 253-272
  • “Corruption and Local Democratization in Indonesia: The Role of Islamic Parties,” with Ari Kuncoro, Journal of Development Economics, 2011, 94, 164-180
  • “Cities and Development,” Journal of Regional Science, 2010, 50, 515-540
  • “The Dynamics of City Formation” (with Tony Venables), Review of Economic Dynamics, 2009, 12, 233-254
  • “Agglomeration of Headquarters,” (with J. Davis), Regional Science and Urban Economics, 2008, 63, 431-450
  • “Networking Off Madison Avenue,” (with M. Arzaghi), Review of Economic Studies, 2008, 75, 1011-1038.

Working papers:

Countries and regions

Asia; China

My research