We have a strong track record of delivering positive research impact, including policy development, public debate and innovative practice in the fields of geography and planning.
With projects funded by the EU, national bodies, government departments and other organisations, our staff work to deliver relevant, robust, high-quality research that supports legislation change and evidence-based policy making across the UK and further afield.
We have four Impact Groups that are engaging with practitioners and policy-makers at the local, national and global level in the following areas:
Our research has a strong emphasis on social, spatial and economic inclusion, particularly in urban environments. Globally, work by members of this group has shaped UN debates on sustainable housing and the urban informal economy.
In the UK, our research has sparked legislative changes in Wales that significantly improved accommodation outcomes of homeless people; it has contributed to protect the rights of religious minorities across English planning authorities; and it has raised awareness about the challenges facing mothers in the UK as they seek to integrate breastfeeding into their daily lives.
Strategic environmental planning
A key research specialism within the School connects the social and the environmental, using impact assessment, modelling and mapping techniques.
Positive impacts that have recently been achieved in this area include the identification of patterns of social vulnerability to climate change and flooding in Scotland and Wales and the development of frameworks and models for measuring waterways’ public benefits, land use, car and public transport, pedestrian and cycle behaviour.
Food and farming policies
We have a longstanding history of impactful research on food and farming policies. Research by members of this Group has recently informed the Welsh National Food Policy and Rural Development Plan, the Scottish National Public Procurement Policy and DEFRA’s management of animal disease and biosecurity.
At the global level, this research has influenced European legislation on animal welfare; it has provided support to the development of the Milan Urban Food Policy Pact; and it has raised the profile of urban food policies in UN debates.
Urban and regional development
Our researchers have played a very prominent role in shaping regional policy-thinking towards innovation and endogenous development, especially at EU level.
In recent years, members of this group have developed new metrics for measuring regional competitiveness, have used resilience concepts to identify key principles for regions to prepare for future economic crises, and are currently participating in the development of the Cardiff City Region.