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Dr Alasdair Jones

Alasdair Jones is Assistant Professor in Qualitative Research Methodology and an Associate at LSE Cities|.

Alasdair graduated with a first class degree (with distinction) in Geography from Cambridge in 2002 before being awarded an ESRC studentship. These studies comprised an MPhil in Sociology from Cambridge (awarded with distinction) and a PhD from the Cities Programme at LSE. Prior to commencing his lectureship at LSE’s Department of Methodology, Alasdair worked in research positions at the University of Hertfordshire, the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine and the Royal Society for the Arts. He also spent 16 months working as a Visiting Fellow at the City Futures Research Centre, University of New South Wales, and recently completed a 2012-13 US-UK Fulbright Commission ‘all-disciplines scholarship’ at the Center for Ethnographic Research, UC Berkeley.

Research interests
Alasdair’s research coalesces around the theme of urban life. In particular, he is interested in the relationship between built form in cities and social practices, and his published research to date has centred on public space, public transport and the ways that citizenship is experienced in urban settings. Alasdair is currently writing up qualitative research he has conducted that explores the fit between sustainable design features of masterplanned developments and the living practices of residents of those developments.

Broadly, Alasdair’s research interests can be categorised as follows:

Research methods – qualitative methods and ethnography, with a particular interest in methods that allow researchers to explore the disconnects between designs and practices. Also developing an interest in mixed methods approaches that combine ethnography and social network analysis;

Urban sociology – the relationship between built form and social life in cities, with a particular emphasis on public space, public life in cities and urban citizenship;

Public health – expertise in the public health impacts of social policy interventions, with a particular interest in the relationship between transport and health;

Sustainable urbanism – in particular the lived experience of ‘sustainable’ residential developments and active/public transport policies, infrastructure and mobilities.

Recent Research Projects

Understanding social networks ethnographically - using qualitative methods to map social group networks, US-UK Fulbright Commission All-disciplines Scholarship 2012-13 (Centre for Ethnographic Research, UC Berkeley

UH-Lafarge Sustainable Living Study, UH-Lafarge Sustainable Living Partnership (Centre for Sustainable Communities, University of Hertfordshire)

‘On the buses’: evaluating the impact of free bus travel for young people on the public health, NIHR Public Health Research Programme (Transport and Health Group, London School of Tropical Medicine [PI: Professor Judith Green])


Scholarly Papers

  • Green, J., Jones, A. and Roberts, H. (2014) ‘More than a-to-b: the health implications of free public transport for older citizens in London,’ Ageing & Society 34(03): 472-494.
  • Goodman, A., Jones, A., Roberts, H., Steinbach, R. and Green, J. (2014) ‘“We can all just get on a bus and go”: rethinking independent mobility in the context of the universal provision of free bus travel to young Londoners,' Mobilities 9(2): 275-293.
  • Jones, A. (2013) ‘A tripartite conceptualisation of urban public space as a site for play: Evidence from South Bank, London,’ Urban Geography 34(8): 1144-1170.
  • Jones, A., Goodman, A., Roberts, H., Steinbach, R. & Green, J. (2013) ‘Entitlement to concessionary public transport and wellbeing: a qualitative study of young people and older citizens in London, UK,’ Social Science & Medicine 91: 202-9.
  • Edwards, P., Steinbach, R., Green, J., Petticrew, M., Goodman, A., Jones, A., Roberts, H., Kelly, C., Nelthorp, J. & Wilkinson, P. (2013) ‘Health impacts of free bus travel for young people: evaluation of a natural experiment in London,’ Journal of Epidemiology & Community Health 67(8): 641-7.  
  • Jones, A., Green, J., Roberts, H., Steinbach, R. & Goodman, A. (2012) ‘Rethinking passive transport: bus fare exemptions and young people’s wellbeing’, Health & Place 18(3): 605-612.

Other research publications

  • Green, J., Steinbach, R., Jones, A., Edwards, P., Kelly, C., Nellthorp, J., Goodman, A., Roberts, H., Petticrew, M. & Wilkinson, P. (2014) On the buses: a mixed-method evaluation of the impact of free bus travel for young people on the public health. NIHR Journals Library ‘Public Health Research’ Volume 2 Issue 1 (February 2014). DOI: 10.3310/phr02010. Available to download from: NIHR Journal Library. PrePress Ltd: Perth.
  • Jones, A. (2012) Eco- by design, eco- by practice? Urban development and the making of sustainable communities. Centre for Sustainable Communities think piece. Hatfield: University of Hertfordshire.
  • Wilkinson, P., Edwards, P., Steinbach, R., Petticrew, M., Goodman, A., Jones, A., Roberts, H., Kelly, C., Nellthorp, J. & Green, J. (2011) The health impact of free bus travel for young people in London: protocol for an observational study. Occasional Papers in Transport & Health (2). London: LSHTM.
  • Jones, A. (2010) Free for some: Setting the context for the ‘On the Buses’ study. Occasional Papers in Transport & Health (1). London: LSHTM.
  • Rowson, J., Broome, S. & Jones, A. (2010) Connected Communities: How social networks power and sustain the Big Society. RSA, London

Book reviews

  • Jones, A. (2012) ‘Material Geographies of Household Sustainability’, Journal of Urbanism: International Research on Placemaking and Urban Sustainability 5(2-3): 271-273