It has been a busy few months for the Cluster, with academics sharing their expertise at a variety of events across three continents and enjoying considerable research funding success. Catch up with all the latest news below.

Invited talks

CityLightsProfessor Sylvia Chant ran a short course entitled ‘Cities, Poverty and Gender’ at the University of Fribourg, Switzerland over four days in April and May 2014, which succeeded in being voted ‘excellent’ by all participants. In May she was invited to speak at a public lecture marking the 20th Anniversary of the LSE Gender Institute entitled ‘The Presence of Gender’. The audio podcast is available now. Sylvia also travelled to Sweden in Junein her role as Adlerbertska Guest Professor of Sustainable Development, University of Gothenberg, to deliver a guest lecture in the Higher Seminar Series on ‘Young Love and Urban Poverty in The Gambia’.

In May Professor Gareth Jones chaired a panel at the Latin American Studies association Conference (LASA) in Chicago entitled “Ethnographies and/of street violence in Latin America”. The following month Gareth delivered a keynote address at the IDS-UNICEF conference in Sussex, speaking on ‘Cities, Poverty and Rights in Latin America: what is the present and future for young people?’

Dr Romola Sanyal took part in a conference on Statelessness and Transcontinental Migration on July 24th-25th, at the United Nations University (Institute of Globalization, Culture and Mobility) in Barcelona.

Dr Hyun Bang Shin took part in the Crisis-scapes: Athens and beyond conference held in Athens, Greece, 9-10 May 2014. He gave a talk at a Right to the City in Crisis panel along with other invitees including Tom Slater, Andy Merrifield, Lila Leontidou and Christy Petropoulou. The session was chaired by Antonis Vradis who did his PhD (2013) in the Cities@Geography Cluster. Dr Shin also visited Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, to take part in the 2nd International Conference on Mega-events and the City, held shortly before the 2014 FIFA World Cup. He gave a paper on Urban spatial restructuring, event-led development and scalar politics, discussing the experience of the Guangzhou Asian Games held in 2010. The conference saw the presence of two other members of Cities@Geography, Dr Melissa Fernandez who is a research officer at LSE London and Mara Nogueira, a research student.

Hyun will shortly travel to Beijing, China, to teach a course on Urban Asia and China at the LSE-Peking University Summer School, 11-22 August 2014. He is also to visit Seoul for a week before travelling to Beijing to continue his research on urban redevelopment and displacement in Seoul.

Sylvia Chant has a busy end to the year, travelling to Marrakesh as an invited participant in the Atlantic Dialogues Conference in October; Guadalajara in Mexico in November as speaker and roundtable member at a conference on ‘Las Ciencias Sociales Aquí y Ahora: Propuestas Creativas para Problemáticas Agobiantes’ at the Unidad Occidente de CIESAS; and Barcelona in December to deliver a keynote address on ‘Childhood in Feminine: Girls’ at the Universitat de Barcelona International Colloqium.

Grants and funding

Cluster members have enjoyed considerable research funding success, with the level of support reflecting the outstanding quality of research produced. In summary:

Dr Nancy Holman and a team of LSE London academics were awarded £99’000 in HEIF5 research funding, to support 14 months of research entitled Housing in London: Addressing the crisis’. Read more about the project.

Gareth Jones recently secured €1,011,245 from ESRC-ORA for “Slum Tourism in the Americas: Commodifying Urban Poverty and Violence”, with Dr Rivke Jaffe (Amsterdam) and Professor Eveline Durr (LMU).

Romola Sanyal was awarded an academic collaboration with Arab universities grant (£102,875) funded by the Emirates Foundation through the LSE Middle East Centre, together with Dr Mona Harb and Dr Mona Fawaz (American University Beirut) for a project entitled “Policy Mobilities, Urban Politics and Assemblage: A View from Lebanon.”

Selected recent publications

Chant, S. (2014) Reflections on the ‘feminisation of poverty’ in relation to women’s work and home-based enterprise in slums of the global south. International Journal of Gender and Entrepreneurship, 6 (3)

Jones, G.A. & S. Thomas de Benitez (2014) Lost Opportunity: the Lydia Cacho case and Child Rights in Mexico. International Journal of Children’s Rights, 22, 2, 285-312.

Mercer, Claire (2014) Middle class construction: domestic architecture, aesthetics and anxieties in Tanzania. The Journal of Modern African Studies, 52 (2). pp. 227-250. ISSN 0022-278X