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Professor Geoff Vigar
Professor of Urban Planning and Director of Research

  • Email: geoff.vigar@ncl.ac.uk
  • Telephone: +44 (0) 191 208 8338
  • Address: School of Architecture Planning and Landscape
    Claremont Tower
    Newcastle University
    Newcastle upon Tyne
    NE1 7RU

Roles and Responsibilities

APL Research Director


PhD: The Politics of Paradigmatic Policy Change and the Greening of UK Transport Planning, Department of Geography, University of Newcastle upon Tyne.

Postgraduate Diploma, City and Regional Planning. University of Wales College of Cardiff.

BSc(Hons) Town Planning Studies, University of Wales College of Cardiff

Research Interests

Geoff’s research focuses on the following overlapping elements:
- the politics of mobility, infrastructure supply and demand, and their translation into transport policy

- planning theory and practice, particularly institutional design for spatial strategy-making as seen through collaborative and deliberative theoretical lenses

- planning professionalism

- media representations of planning and transport issues

Current Work

1. Looking at ideas of innovation in planning, funded by the projects: 'Spatial Planning, Innovation, Design and User Involvement (SPINDUS)' www.spindus.org : funded by IWT, Dec. 2009- Nov. 2013, which also explores concepts of spatial quality in planning practices; and by the Royal Town Planning Institute looking at innovation in UK planning practice.

2. Using a SPINDUS work package to explore the everyday politics of mobilty for disadvantaged groups http://www.ncl.ac.uk/guru/research/project/3180

3. Exploring the implications of localism for English planning, focusing on procedural and substantive justice concerns in particular. This entails acting as critical friend to a Neighbourhood Planning Frontrunner in Northumberland funded by the Catherine Cookson Trust.

4. Working on the ESPON TANGO project pursuing ideas of 'good' territorial governance utilising case studies of urban-region governance and neighbourhood planning.

Research Roles

Research Director for APL

Postgraduate Supervision

Geoff welcomes applications for post-graduate study that mesh with his research interests. To date he has supervised 11 PhD candidates to completion, and currently supervises 7 others:  

  • Ozge Erbas, Megaproject Decision-Making in Megacities, [2nd supervisor with Suzanne Speak] 
  • Felix Ogele, ‘Integrated Coastal Zone Management and the Petroleum Industry in the Niger Delta’, (2nd supervisor with Paola Gazzola)
  • Rorie Parsons: Cycling cultures, travel behaviour and the local polity [ESRC DTC funded, lead supervisor with Andy Law]
  • Brian Peel, 'The use of knowledge for effective planning: The funding and provision of infrastructure from value capture mechanisms' (lead supervisor with David Webb)
  • Rhona Pringle, 'Energy Independence in Smaller Settlements' (2nd supervisor with Neil Powe)
  • Hiroshi Saito, ‘Spatial Planning as Regeneration Strategy’ [sole supervisor]
  • Dhruv Sookoo, ‘Becoming Planners and Architects: the Formation of Perspectives on Residential Design Quality’ (2nd supervisor with Andrew Ballantyne)

I have examined 12 PhDs at universities in the UK and overseas.  


Undergraduate Teaching

TCP2023 Understanding Sustainable Development

TCP3049 Spatial Strategy-Making

TCP3050 Planning Strategies into Action

Postgraduate Teaching

TCP8901/2 The Reflexive Practitioner

TCP8910 Sustainable Communities