Gareth Young

Twitter: @GarethJYoung

Primary Supervisor: John Flint
Secondary Supervisor: Caroline Hunter (University of York)

I graduated from Sheffield Hallam University in 2009 with a BSc in Property Development, going on to spend time working within commercial and residential property agency and valuation. In 2011, I completed an MA in International Development and Planning from the University of Sheffield.

I then undertook a one year paid internship at the Building and Social Housing Foundation as a researcher with their UK Housing Policy and Practice team. In 2012, I was awarded a full ESRC scholarship to study for a PhD in Town and Regional Planning.

Housing Tenure and Urban Unrest

My PhD explores the causal link between social housing and the 2011 riots, as well as attempting to understand the way housing-related mechanisms were seemingly legitimised as appropriate policy solutions for the prevention of future urban disorder. Following the 2011 riots, political pronouncements and mainstream media coverage talked about the removal of welfare benefits, including social housing tenancies, for rioters. The focus of this research is to understand the impact of such narratives, and subsequent legislative changes, on social housing policy and practice and the attitudes towards the social housing sector more generally. The fieldwork was conducted with local frontline and strategic practitioners across England to understand the perspectives of those working within communities impacted by such changes.

For more details about this study, or the emerging findings, please do not hesitate to email me.

Conference Presentations

I have presented my research and emerging findings at the following conferences and workshops:

  • SPA Postgraduate Workshop: “Austerity, Welfare and Citizenship”, January 2015, Leeds – ‘Spaces of Misunderstanding’: Disparity and conflict between national policy-making and local housing-management post-2011 riots
  • Housing Studies Association Annual Conference, April 2015, York – Spaces of Misunderstanding? Disparity and conflict between national policy-making and local housing management post-2011 riots
  • WRDTC Planning Pathway Conference: “Planning for Impact”, May 2015, Sheffield – Exploring the disparity and conflict between national policy-making and local housing-management post-2011 riots


Since 2013 I have been seminar tutor for TRP131 The Making of Urban Places, an undergraduate module for TRP and Geography students. The purpose of these seminars is to help students develop core academic skills of critical essay writing, tasks involving group work and academic presenting.

I have also given guest lectures to students of the Anti-Social Behaviour module at York Law School on what the 2011 riots mean for ASB policies.

Research Projects

Whilst I have been undertaking my PhD in Town and Regional Planning, I have also been involved in a number of other externally funded research projects:

  • RICS, 2014-2015, New business practices: Estate agency interaction in England and New Zealand housing markets
  • Rotherham Metropolitan Borough Council, 2014 – 2015, Strategic Housing Market Assessment
  • DCLG, 2014, Attitudinal research on financial payments to reduce opposition to new homes
  • DCLG, 2014, Evaluation of the impact of the New Homes Bonus on attitudes & behaviour

Selected Recent Publications

  • Dunning, R, Henneberry, J, Inch, A, Payne, S, Watkins, C, While, A, Young, G, Hickman, H (2014) Attitudinal research on financial payments to reduce opposition to new homes, Report to DCLG, London
  • Dunning, R, Inch, A, Payne, S, Watkins, C, While, A, Young, G, Hickman, H, Bramley G, McIntosh, S, Watkins, D, Valler, D (2014) The Impact of the New Homes Bonus on Attitudes and Behaviours, Report to the DCLG, London.

Other Activities

In 2012, I became a co-opted member of the Housing Studies Association Executive Committee. I have been responsible for the co-ordination of the HSA’s Early Career Stream of the annual conference for the last three years. In 2015, I became an elected member and responsibilities now include the committee’s social media, the coordination of the Valerie Karn Early Career Memorial Prize and I am co-organising the 2016 Annual Conference.

Since November 2014 I have been the TRP PhD Student Representative for the HOME Research Group and involved in the revisions of the group’s webpage and the facilitation of the HOME PhD Research Group.

In January 2015, I was accepted onto the Social Policy Association’s Insight into Publication scheme, where I work alongside the journal editors for Social Policy and Society. This scheme allows me to follow a number of articles from initial submission through to the final decision of acceptance or rejection, and so far is proving a useful insight into the academic publishing process.

I was responsible for organising the White Rose DTC Planning Pathway Conference, Planning for Impact, hosted by Town and Regional Planning on 19 May 2015. This conference brought together PGRs and early career researchers from the Planning Pathway, and beyond, to present their research and begin to consider the wider socio-economic impact that our research can have. Details of the event, including many of the presentations can be found on the conference webpage (link below).