My career so far has involved two main areas of research:
1) In my PhD and subsequent writing I have been interested in practice-based theories of knowledge and innovation, and particularly the contribution that approaches from organisational studies such as activity theory can make to understanding of this area in economic geography. For my PhD I carried out ethnographic research on the relationship between collective learning and work practices in UK videogame development studios. In the future I aim to further develop this strand of research by studying the role of design as a practice through which innovation occurs across manufacturing, service, and creative industries.
2) My recent work in CURDS has been focused on universities and urban or regional development. I am writing a book (with John Goddard) provisionally titled The University and the City that will be published by Routledge in 2012. This involves research in a number of English cities on the contribution of universities to sustainable development, public health, and the cultural sector of cities. My more theoretical-focused writing in this area has mainly focused on contributing to the literature on universities and intermediary organisations in regional innovation systems, particularly from an institutional and evolutionary economic geography perspective. This wider programme of research has also included an online survey that investigated the ways in which individual academics understand their research to have different types of ‘impact’ and its relationship to their work practices. Future work in this area will hopefully encompass a broader focus on higher education and regional development in different national contexts, and further research on the links between universities and the creative or design sectors of the economy.