Update from University College London

Michele Acuto and Francesca Artioli have finished a piece on the urban politics/policy of the nexus, submitted to CITY, which discusses the implication for cities of the “integration agenda” of the nexus. This was also the object of Francesca’s presentation at the annual RGS-IGB conference as well as of a talk Michele gave recently at the University of Antwerp Urban Studies Institute.

In collaboration with the EPSRC Vaccinating The Nexus project and postdoctoral research assistant on it, Dr Rocio Carrero, and Shaun Larcom from Cambridge, Michele and Francesca are also running a survey of "nexus attitudes" designed to get a sense of the understanding and propensity for nexus thinking in U.K., European and international research. That will most certainly lead to a few papers early in the new year and offers a clear touch point between wefwebs and VTN. In particular, they have been invited to submit a proposal for a piece in the new Nature Sustainability magazine that draws join this survey.

Michele and the team have also secured a £25,000 EPSRC impact accelerator award (IAA), plus staffing costs for a researcher and an intern for 6 months, to extend the analysis of the urban nexus infrastructure to the UK Core Cities group (10 largest cities outside London) in preparation for the London WEFWEBs workshop next March.

The grant also offers a chance to scope the internationalisation of this approach with the world bank (which is one of the key partners of the research group). As part of that, they will associate to the project Paul Honeybone, currently a PhD student at UCL with over a decade of infrastructure experience in local government in New Zealand, until March to lead on the application of the methodology developed with Francesca to the Core Cities and engage government (especially national infrastructure commission and civil contingencies secretariat) in the March workshop.

In the meantime, the UCL branch of the project are busy hiring a replacement for Francesca, who has moved as Lecture at the School of Urbanism in Paris, and plan on making an appointment offer after 1st November.

First published: 20 October 2016