Thesis Title [working title]: The Maritime Assemblage: A study of Superrich Mobility in the Cote d’Azur
First Supervisor: Dr Christopher Bear
Second Supervisor: Dr Jon Anderson
Start Date: January 2013
Completion Date: December 2015
Funding Source: The Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) 1+3 Studentship
- MSc, Social Science Research Methods, Cardiff University (2012)
- BSc (Hons) Geography (Human) and Planning, First Class, Cardiff University (2011)
Memberships / External Activities
- Postgraduate Fellow of the Royal Geographical Society (since 2012)
- Postgraduate representative of the Royal Geographical Society- Institute of British GeographersSocial and Cultural Geography Research Group (2013- present)
Areas of Research Interest
- Geographies of the Sea, Ship, and Shore
- Assemblage Theory and Methods
- Mobilities and Mobile Methods
- Superrich Mobilities
Previously within geography and across the social sciences the sea has been perceived as 'a marginal region that has limited commonality with or impact on the physical and social processes that characterize the rest of the world' (Steinberg 1999: 367), whereas ships have been deemed 'heterotopias' and as 'places without a place' (Foucault 1986: 27). In addition, the shore is identified as a liminal space, one that is betwixt and between the functions of the mainland and the ocean (Shields 1991). In response I develop the maritime assemblage.
Specifically I look at how yacht crew facilitate superrich mobility and in what ways the two groups of actors enable or hinder the mobility and or experience of the sea, the ship, and the shore for each other. In addition I have argued that in order to understand these maritime spaces, it is essential to identify and account for the non-human agencies such as animals, marine and coastal geology, weather, and technology.
- To develop the case for a relational approach to conceptualizations of the sea in order to capture the inherent connectivity between sea, ship, and shore spaces.
- To develop an appropriate methodological framework for assemblage, particularly in relation to the sea, in order to enhance future assemblage studies.
- To introduce the superyacht and the superrich as an original case study to assemblage and mobilities fields. In turn, developing newly emerging geographies of the superrich and enhancing existing studies of mobilities and geographies of the sea.
Spence E (2014) Unraveling the Politics of Super-rich Mobility: A Study of Crew and Guest on Board Luxury Yachts Mobilities Vol. 9 (3) DOI: 10.1080/17450101.2014.946772
Spence, E. (2014) Towards a more-than-sea geography: exploring the relational geographies of superrich mobility between sea, superyacht and shore in the Cote d'Azur. Area 46: 203–209. doi: 10.1111/area.12101
Conference/ Workshop Papers
'Visual Methodologies' for the Innovative Methodologies workshop presented atthe RGS-IBG Postgraduate Mid-term Conference, Loughborough University, April 2014. With Richard Scriven and Dr Robin Smith. Session sponsored by the RGS-IBG Social and Cultural Geography Research Group.
“The more-than-sea geographies of superrich mobility” research overview presented at RGS-IBG Postgraduate Forum Mid-term Conference, Loughborough University, April 2014.
"Towards a more-than-sea geography" presented at Sea Narratives Symposium, Institute of Advanced Studies, University of Warwick, Jan 2014.
"Bridging the land-sea divide: Towards a more-than-sea geography" presented at RGS-IBG Annual International Conference, London, Aug 2013.
Co-convener of Post-graduate Snapshots: Engagements with Social and Cultural Geography at the RGS-IBG Annual International Conference, London, Aug 2014 (with Richard Scriven). Sponsored by the RGS-IBG PGF and RGS-IBG Social and Cultural Research Group.
Co-convener of Innovative Methodologies workshop at the RGS-IBG Postgraduate Mid-term Conference, Loughborough University, April 2014. With Richard Scriven and Dr Robin Smith. Session sponsored by the RGS-IBG Social and Cultural Geography Research Group.
Convener of Maritime Mobilities session at the RGS-IBG Annual International Conference, London, Aug 2013.