Not available in 2021/22
GY404      Half Unit
Inclusive Growth

This information is for the 2021/22 session.

Teacher responsible

Prof Neil Lee


This course is available on the MPhil/PhD in Economic Geography, MSc in Local Economic Development and MSc in Urban Policy (LSE and Sciences Po). This course is available with permission as an outside option to students on other programmes where regulations permit.


A good background in economic geography, economics, public policy, social policy or regional and urban studies.

Course content

Economic change is reshaping local economies, with important implications for work, incomes and poverty. Trade and new technologies are polarising labour markets and creating new types of employment in both the developed and developing world. Despite global falls in poverty, living standards in many disadvantaged regions have been stagnant. And while some cities and regions have managed to create skilled jobs, others have struggled to do so. How can policymakers manage this change and create good jobs in disadvantaged cities and regions? How can local policymakers reduce poverty and disadvantage? Is Inclusive Growth feasible?  

This course focuses on the relationship between local economic development, labour markets, poverty and living standards. Each week we cover academic theory and evidence and then relate this to a current policy challenge. Topics include the geography of poverty, spatial labour markets, labour market change, the challenge of high- and low-skills equilibriums, and the geography of social mobility. The second half of the term focuses on the critical analysis of policy agendas. Topics include the impact of high-tech strategies on low-wage workers, spatial targeting of anti-poverty efforts, microfinance and entrepreneurship, and Inclusive Growth.


In the Department of Geography and Environment, teaching will be delivered through a combination of classes/seminars, pre-recorded lectures, live online lectures, in-person lectures and other supplementary interactive live activities.

This course is delivered via a series of seminars in Lent Term.

This course includes a reading week in Week 6 of Lent Term.

Formative coursework

Students are expected to present, debate, and participate actively in seminars.

Indicative reading

Lee, N. 2018. Inclusive Growth in Cities: A Sympathetic Critique, Regional Studies, 53(9), 424-434. OECD. 2014. All on board: Making inclusive growth happen. Paris: OECD; E Moretti, 2013, The New Geography of Jobs.


Exam (100%, duration: 2 hours) in the summer exam period.

Course selection videos

Some departments have produced short videos to introduce their courses. Please refer to the course selection videos index page for further information.

Student performance results

(2017/18 - 2019/20 combined)

Classification % of students
Distinction 19.1
Merit 73
Pass 7.9
Fail 0

Important information in response to COVID-19

Please note that during 2021/22 academic year some variation to teaching and learning activities may be required to respond to changes in public health advice and/or to account for the differing needs of students in attendance on campus and those who might be studying online. For example, this may involve changes to the mode of teaching delivery and/or the format or weighting of assessments. Changes will only be made if required and students will be notified about any changes to teaching or assessment plans at the earliest opportunity.

Key facts

Department: Geography & Environment

Total students 2020/21: 47

Average class size 2020/21: 24

Controlled access 2020/21: Yes

Value: Half Unit

Guidelines for interpreting course guide information

Personal development skills

  • Self-management
  • Team working
  • Communication
  • Application of numeracy skills
  • Commercial awareness
  • Specialist skills