Professor Rowland Atkinson
Department of Urban Studies and Planning
Research Chair in Inclusive Societies
+44 114 222 6936
Full contact details
Department of Urban Studies and Planning
Geography and Planning Building
As Chair in Inclusive Societies I work both within USP and across the Faculty of Social Sciences and welcome contact from community leaders, policymakers and others interested in addressing these challenges. I am a member of the editorial advisory board for the journal Housing, Theory and Society and previously an editor of Housing Studies.
My work crosses the boundaries of urban and housing studies, sociology, geography and criminology. While my interests are broad much of it hinges on a concern to identify hidden and sometimes invisible social problems and issues. These interests started with my PhD which looked at household displacement from gentrification in London.
I continue to be driven by an interest in the ways in which social inequality drives spatial problems. From 1997 I worked at the Department of Urban Studies, at the University of Glasgow, where I worked on issues of social exclusion and area effects (the compounding force of disadvantage faced by poorer residents in poorer areas). It was here that I also took an interest in the rise of gated communities in the UK, leading the first UK study and beginning to further consider the role of the middle-classes and higher income households in shaping social outcomes more broadly across the city.
While my work on gentrification had viewed middle-class neighbourhood choices as a problem for working-class and poorer households I was now interested in much higher income groups while maintaining an interest in poverty, housing and exclusion.
From 2005 I directed the Housing and Community Research Unit, University of Tasmania, Australia, where a very different urban context and issues of indigenous health and housing influenced my thinking. My work here continued to focus on issues of gentrification, public housing and state-led strategies of social mixing to create more sustainable communities and I worked on a series of initiatives designed to generate more interest in these issues from policy-makers nationally.
From 2009 I moved back to the UK to the University of York where I became Reader in Urban Studies and Criminology and my work became more focused on questions of social harm and crime in urban contexts (a book on Urban Criminology, with Gareth Millington, is now in print with Routledge).
Since moving to the University of Sheffield in 2014 I continue to work on urban social problems including the role of the super-rich in residential life in the UK (I am currently writing a book for Verso on this subject), gentrification, community trauma/violence and social vulnerability.
My most recent book (Domestic Fortress, Manchester University Press), with Sarah Blandy from the School of Law, considers many of the long-term foci of my work – inequality, the private home, gating/fortification and social change more broadly.
- Research interests
- Gentrification and displacement
- Cities and crime
- Poverty and exclusion
- Segregation and urban security
- Gated communities and fortress homes
- Social inequalities and urban fragmentation strategies (Newton Mobility Grant)
- War in Peacetime: Investigating urban violence and social trauma (Max Batley)
- Challenging the stigmatisation of poverty and place-based disadvantage (Australian Research Council)
- Life in the Alpha-Territory: London's 'super-rich' neighbourhoods (ESRC)
- Alpha territoriality in Hong Kong and London: The local implications of transnational real estate investment by the super-rich (HK RGC and UK ESRC)
- Building better societies. Bristol University Press.
- View this article in WRRO Domestic Fortress: Fear and the New Home Front. Manchester: Manchester University Press.
- House, Home and Society. London: Palgrave Macmillan.
- Building better societies: Promoting social justice in a world falling apart..
- Shades of deviance: A primer on crime, deviance and social harm. London: Routledge.
- New directions in crime and deviancy. London: Routledge.
- Securing an urban renaissanceCrime, community, and British urban policy. Policy Press.
- Gated Communities: International Perspectives. Taylor and Francis / Routledge.
- Gated Communities: International Perspectives. London: Taylor and Francis.
- Gentrification in a global context: The new urban colonialism. London: Routledge.
- Anchoring capital in place: the grounded impact of international wealth chains on housing markets in London. Urban Studies. View this article in WRRO
- Necrotecture: Lifeless Dwellings and London's Super‐Rich. International Journal of Urban and Regional Research. View this article in WRRO
- Disorderly cities and the policy-making field:the 1981 English riots and the management of urban decline. British Politics. View this article in WRRO
- Disconnected: Non-Users of Information Communication Technologies. Sociological Research Online. View this article in WRRO
- Domestic Fortress: Fear and the New Home Front Response. URBAN STUDIES, 55(2), 483-486. View this article in WRRO
- Elite Formation, Power and Space in Contemporary London. Theory, Culture & Society, 34(5-6), 179-200. View this article in WRRO
- Looking for big ‘fry’: The motives and methods of middle-class international property investors. Urban Studies. View this article in WRRO
- Non-state space: the strategic ejection of dangerous and high maintenance urban space. Territory, Politics, Governance, 5(4), 443-458. View this article in WRRO
- Pleasure Zones and Murder Boxes: Online Pornography and Violent Video Games as Cultural Zones of Exception. British Journal of Criminology, 56(6), 1291-1307. View this article in WRRO
- Welcome to Pikettyville? Mapping London's Alpha Territories. Sociological Review. View this article in WRRO
- Limited exposure: Social concealment, mobility and engagement with public space by the super-rich in London. Environment and Planning A. View this article in WRRO
- Urban policy, city control and social catharsis: The attack on social frailty as therapy. British Journal of Criminology, 55(5), 866-882. View this article in WRRO
- Losing One’s Place: Narratives of Neighbourhood Change, Market Injustice and Symbolic Displacement. Housing, Theory and Society, 32(4), 373-388. View this article in WRRO
- Who needs good neighbors?. Environment and Planning A, 47(4), 939-956. View this article in WRRO
- Ears have walls: The listening body in urban space. Aether, 7, 20-28.
- Privatism, Privatisation and Social Distinction in Master-Planned Residential Estates. Urban Policy and Research, 28(4), 391-410.
- The ivorine tower in the city: Engaging urban studies afterThe Wire. City, 14(5), 529-544.
- Burying Indigeneity: The Spatial Construction of Reality and Aboriginal Australia. Social & Legal Studies, 19(3), 311-330.
- Damned by Place, then by Politics: Spatial Disadvantage and the Housing Policy-research Interface. International Journal of Housing Policy, 10(2), 155-171.
- Transparent cities: Re‐shaping the urban experience through interactive video game simulation. City, 13(4), 403-417.
- Home/Neighbourhood/City/+. Environment and Planning A: Economy and Space, 41(12), 2816-2822.
- Gated Communities - Edited by Rowland Atkinson & Sarah Blandy. Tijdschrift voor economische en sociale geografie, 100(3), 370-371.
- Home and away from home: the urban-regional dynamics of second home ownership in Australia. Urban Research & Practice, 2(1), 1-17.
- The consequences of the creative class: The pursuit of creativity strategies in australia's cities. International Journal of Urban and Regional Research, 33(1), 64-79.
- The politics of knowing: Spatial isolation, disconnection and social withdrawal. Geografiska Annaler, Series B: Human Geography, 91(4), 299-310.
- A Picture of the Floating World: Grounding the Secessionary Affluence of the Residential Cruise Liner. Antipode, 41(1), 92-110.
- The Great Cut: The Support for Private Modes of Social Evasion by Public Policy. Social Policy & Administration, 42(6), 593-610.
- Commentary: Gentrification, Segregation and the Vocabulary of Affluent Residential Choice. Urban Studies, 45(12), 2626-2636.
- The Creative Class in Utero? The Australian City, the Creative Economy and the Role of Higher Education. Built Environment, 34(3), 307-318.
- Special Issue: Theoretical Concerns in Australian Housing and Urban Research. Housing, Theory and Society, 25(3), 157-163.
- Affordable housing and planning in Australia Urban 45. Australian Planner, 44(4), 12-13.
- CHARTING THE LUDODROME The mediation of urban and simulated space and rise of theflâneur electronique. Information, Communication & Society, 10(6), 818-845.
- Editorial. European Urban and Regional Studies, 14(4), 267-276.
- Book Reviews. Urban Studies, 44(8), 1619-1629.
- Ecology of Sound: The Sonic Order of Urban Space. Urban Studies, 44(10), 1905-1917.
- Panic rooms: The rise of defensive homeownership. Housing Studies, 22(4), 443-458.
- Padding the Bunker: Strategies of Middle-class Disaffiliation and Colonisation in the City. Urban Studies, 43(4), 819-832.
- Do urban regeneration programmes improve public health and reduce health inequalities? A synthesis of the evidence from UK policy and practice (1980-2004). Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health, 60(2), 108-115.
- Giving urban policy its 'medical': assessing the place of health in area-based regeneration. Policy & Politics, 34(1), 5-26.
- Gated cities of today?: Barricaded residential development in England. Town Planning Review, 76(4), 401-422.
- Introduction: International Perspectives on The New Enclavism and the Rise of Gated Communities. Housing Studies, 20(2), 177-186.
- Fortress UK? Gated communities, the spatial revolt of the elites and time–space trajectories of segregation. Housing Studies, 19(6), 875-892.
- ‘Opportunities and Despair, it’s all in there’. Sociology, 38(3), 437-455.
- Order born of chaos? The capacity for informal social control in disempowered and 'disorganised' neighbourhoods. Policy & Politics, 32(3), 333-350.
- Sacred cows, rational debates and the politics of the right to buy after devolution. Housing Studies, 19(3), 447-463.
- The evidence on the impact of gentrification: new lessons for the urban renaissance?. European Journal of Housing Policy, 4(1), 107-131.
- Book Reviews. Urban Studies, 41(3), 697-712.
- Stock Responses to Disorder?. Criminal Justice Matters, 55(1), 10-11.
- Introduction: Misunderstood Saviour or Vengeful Wrecker? The Many Meanings and Problems of Gentrification. Urban Studies, 40(12), 2343-2350.
- Domestication by Cappuccino or a Revenge on Urban Space? Control and Empowerment in the Management of Public Spaces. Urban Studies, 40(9), 1829-1843.
- What Makes People Dissatisfied with their Neighbourhoods?. Urban Studies, 39(13), 2413-2438.
- Area effects: what do they mean for British housing and regeneration policy?. European Journal of Housing Policy, 2(2), 147-166.
- Disentangling Area Effects: Evidence from Deprived and Non-deprived Neighbourhoods. Urban Studies, 38(12), 2277-2298.
- Accessing hidden and hard to reach populations: snowball research strategies. Social Research Update, 33.
- . Journal of Housing and the Built Environment, 15(4), 307-326.
- Professionalization and displacement in Greater London. Area, 32(3), 287-295.
- Owner-occupation, social mix and neighbourhood impacts. Policy & Politics, 28(1), 93-108.
- Measuring Gentrification and Displacement in Greater London. Urban Studies, 37(1), 149-165.
- Book Reviews. Urban Studies, 36(10), 1819-1831.
- Book Reviews. Urban Studies, 35(12), 2369-2387.
- Book Reviews. Urban Studies, 32(7), 1215-1227.
- Segregation, International Encyclopedia of Human Geography (pp. 119-123). Elsevier
- Gated Communities, International Encyclopedia of Human Geography (pp. 259-263). Elsevier
- From Edge Work to Death Drive: The Pursuit of Pleasure and Denial of Harm in a Leisure Society, Deviant Leisure (pp. 215-236). Springer International Publishing View this article in WRRO
- Minimum City? The Deeper Impacts of the ‘Super-Rich’ on Urban Life, Cities and the Super-Rich (pp. 253-271). Palgrave Macmillan US
- Withdraw, defend or destroy, Domestic Fortress Manchester University Press
- A shell for the body and mind, Domestic Fortress Manchester University Press
- The myths and meanings of home security, Domestic Fortress Manchester University Press
- Fear, crime and the home, Domestic Fortress Manchester University Press
- The fortress archipelago, Domestic Fortress Manchester University Press
- Complexes of the domestic fortress, Domestic Fortress Manchester University Press
- Introduction, Domestic Fortress Manchester University Press
- Invasions of privacy, Domestic Fortress Manchester University Press
- Technologies of the defended home, Domestic Fortress Manchester University Press
- The Loss of Home, House, Home and Society (pp. 56-71). Macmillan Education UK
- House, Home and Society, House, Home and Society (pp. 1-15). Macmillan Education UK
- Housing, State and Market, House, Home and Society (pp. 97-109). Macmillan Education UK
- Space, Place and Design, House, Home and Society (pp. 129-139). Macmillan Education UK
- Domestic Criminology: Crime, Harm and Victimization in the Home, House, Home and Society (pp. 72-82). Macmillan Education UK
- Theoretical Perspectives on Housing, House, Home and Society (pp. 16-31). Macmillan Education UK
- Conclusion: Houses, Homes and Societies, House, Home and Society (pp. 153-160). Macmillan Education UK
- Home Economics, House, Home and Society (pp. 83-96). Macmillan Education UK
- The Household, Gender and Sexuality, House, Home and Society (pp. 46-55). Macmillan Education UK
- The Meaning of Home, House, Home and Society (pp. 32-45). Macmillan Education UK
- Housing, Class and Spatial Divisions, House, Home and Society (pp. 110-128). Macmillan Education UK
- The Home in a Global Context, House, Home and Society (pp. 140-152). Macmillan Education UK
- Capital city? London's housing markets and the super-rich In Hay I & Beaverstock I (Ed.), Handbook on Wealth and the Super-Rich (pp. 225-243). Cheltenham: Edward Elgar.
- Conclusion: Engaging your criminological imagination In Atkinson R (Ed.), Shades of Deviance: A Primer on Crime, Deviance and Social Harm (pp. 241-243). London: Routledge.
- Introduction: Shades of deviance, crime and social harm In Atkinson R (Ed.), Shades of Deviance: A Primer on Crime, Deviance and Social Harm (pp. 1-14). London: Routledge.
- Stalking and harassment In Atkinson R (Ed.), Shades of Deviance: A Primer on Crime, Deviance and Social Harm (pp. 162-165). London: Routledge.
- Nudity In Atkinson R (Ed.), Shades of Deviance: A Primer on Crime, Deviance and Social Harm (pp. 24-26). London: Routledge.
- Globalisation and the new urban colonialism In Brown-Saracino J (Ed.), The Gentrification Debates (pp. 51-70). New York: Routledge.
- Introduction In Atkinson R & Winlow S (Ed.), New Directions in Crime and Deviancy (pp. 1-18). London: Routledge.
- Accommodating harm: The domestic home in criminology In Atkinson R & Winlow S (Ed.), New Directions in Crime and Deviancy (pp. 239-251). London: Routledge.
- Segregation, Urban, International Encyclopedia of Human Geography (pp. 76-80). Elsevier
- Gated Communities/Privatopias, International Encyclopedia of Human Geography (pp. 297-301). Elsevier
- The flowing enclave and the misanthropy of networked affluence In Blokland T & Savage M (Ed.), Networked Urbanism: Social Capital in the City (pp. 41-58). Ashgate
- Introduction, Securing an Urban Renaissance: Crime, Community, and British Urban Policy (pp. 1-18).
- Conclusion: British urbanism at a crossroads, Securing an urban renaissanceCrime, community, and British urban policy (pp. 233-244). Policy Press
- Spaces of discipline and control: the compounded citizenship of social renting, Housing, urban governance and anti-social behaviourPerspectives, policy and practice (pp. 100-116). Policy Press
- Mob mentality: the threat to community sustainability from the search for safety, Building on the pastVisions of housing futures (pp. 162-184). Policy Press
- Spaces of discipline and control: The compounded citizenship of social renting, Housing, Urban Governance and Anti-Social Behaviour: Perspectives, Policy and Practice (pp. 99-116).
- Housing and the new spaces of disciplinary control In Flint J (Ed.), Housing, Urban Governance and Anti-social Behaviour Perspectives, Policy and Practice (pp. 91-116). Bristol: Policy Press.
- Mob-mentality: The threat to community sustainability from the search for safety In Malpass P & Cairncross L (Ed.), Building on the Past: Visions of Housing Futures (pp. 163-184). Bristol: Policy Press.
- Neighbourhoods and Poverty: Linking Place and Social Exclusion, Changing Cities (pp. 154-171). Macmillan Education UK
- British neighbourhoods and poverty: linking place and social exclusion In Buck N, Gordon I, Harding A & Turok I (Ed.), Changing Cities: Rethinking Urban Competitiveness, Cohesion and Governance (pp. 154-171). London: Palgrave Macmillan.
- Introduction In Atkinson R & Bridge G (Ed.), Gentrification in a Global Context (pp. 1-17). London: Routledge.
- Sources of city prosperity and cohesion: the case of Glasgow and Edinburgh, City mattersCompetitiveness, cohesion and urban governance (pp. 12-31). Policy Press
- Thinking prosocially, Building better societies (pp. 195-200). Bristol University Press
- Who would not be for society?, Building better societies (pp. 1-12). Bristol University Press
- The (in)visibility of riches, urban life and exclusion, Building better societies (pp. 165-178). Bristol University Press
- Capital city? London’s housing markets and the ‘super-rich’ (pp. 225-243). Edward Elgar Publishing
- Shades of Deviance Routledge
- Introduction, Gentrification in a Global Context (pp. 1-17). Taylor & Francis
- Book review: Globalised Minds, Roots in the City: Urban Upper-middle Classes in Europe. Urban Studies, 53(6), 1336-1338.
Conference proceedings papers
- View this article in WRRO Humanity Under Duress. Humanity Under Duress. Sheffield, 2019 - 2019.
- An economy of false securities? An analysis of murders inside gated residential developments in the United States. Crime, Media, Culture: An International Journal, Vol. 8(2) (pp 161-172)
- The Social Forces and Politics of Housing Research: Reflections from within the Academy. Housing, Theory and Society, Vol. 26(4) (pp 233-247)
- Between practice, policy and academia: The difficult space of the housing researcher. Reshaping Australasian Housing Research: Refereed Papers and Presentations from the 2nd Australasian Housing Researchers' Conference 2007, AHRC 2007
- Second homes in Australia: Charting the growth of holiday homeownership and its community impacts. Australasian Housing Researchers Conference
- Loic Wacquant Commentaries. People, Place and Policy Online, Vol. 10(2) (pp 174-184) View this article in WRRO
- View this article in WRRO Defragmenting Public Space: A Guide for Policymakers. Defragmenting Public Space: A Guide for Policymakers, 2019 - 2019.
- Gentrification and displacement: The household impacts of neighbourhood change
- Housing policies, social mix and community outcomes
- Domicide. In International Encyclopedia of Housing and Home Elsevier.
- Gentrification. In International Encyclopedia of Housing and Home Elsevier.
- Gated communities. In International Encyclopedia of Housing and Home Elsevier.
- Snowball Sampling. In The A to Z of Social Research. London: Sage.
- Snowball Sampling Sage Publications, Inc..
- Research group
I am primary supervisor for the following students:
- Dario Ferrazzi, Crime, criminality and urban space
- Yixin Liu, Gated communities in China
Interested in PhD study?
I welcome enquiries from prospective PhD students who have interests in the following areas:
- urban patterns of wealth, inequality and segregation
- crime and disorder
- gated communities