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Geography and Environment

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Department of

Geography & Environment

London School of Economics & Political Science

Houghton Street

London WC2A 2AE


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Undergraduate enquiries

Luigi Pisanelli



Undergraduate Programmes Manager & Executive Assistant to Head of Department

Luigi Pisanelli



Graduate enquiries



Communications and Events

Catherine Mitchell


+44 (0)20 7107 5406


Department Manager

Sam Colegate


A centre of international academic excellence in economic, urban and development geography, environmental social science and climate change.

LED Forum

MSc LED Forum 2017

Organized annually by students on the 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.

Michael Storper

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.

Paul Cheshire

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.

Gareth A. Jones

Prof Gareth Jones co-convening LMU conference

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


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!


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 entitled 'Britain and Europe: Towards Brexit?'. Read more.

Riccardo Crescenzi

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.

Ben Groom

Ben Groom advises Office for National Statistics

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

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.

Ben Groom

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 MouratoDr Nancy HolmanDr 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.

Simona Iammarino

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.


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. Next issue: winter 2016.

Past issues: Summer 2016 / Spring 2016.

Andrés Rodriguez-Pose

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 IammarinoAndrés 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.

Felipe Carozzi

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 Tang

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.


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.

Christine Whitehead

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.

Teaching Excellence Awards 2016

Success at LSE Teaching Awards

Many of our Geography & Environment colleagues have 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-PoseHenry Overman and Michael StorperRead the impact case study.

© Sam Colegate

LSE Geography and Environment is top 5 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 4th internationally. The Department was also 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.

Department of Geography and Environment
LSE Houghton Street