UCL Anthropology


Sandra Wallman

E-mail: s.wallman@ucl.ac.uk

PhD, Social Anthropology
London School of Economics, 1965

Emeritus Professor


General Interests

  • Application of anthropological perspective to contemporary issues - as in cross-disciplinary approaches to development, ethnicity, hiv/aids research
  • Comparative analysis of parts of cities (europe and africa) as urban systems
  • Scope for 'informal' economic activity in different types/styles of urban system
  • Development of new methods for mapping and communicating 'invisible' social process

Main Research

Following earlier researches in London and Kampala and a recent ESRC-funded project in Turin, ['Host-migrant options in the informal economy'], I am developing models and methods which can be generalized to comparative work elsewhere. The objective is a reliable and user-friendly typology of urban systems. As Research Task Organizer in an EU Network of Excellence program on 'Sustainability in Diversity" [SUSDIV] contracted 2005-2010, in which UCL Anthropology is a major partner, the typology project moves forward in collaboration with partners and associates in a range of cities.

This work consolidates my interest in the systematic relation between people(s) and place(s) in 'mixed' urban areas. Our current concerns are with identifying indicators of the open/closed-ness of local systems which will account for their different capacity to absorb incomers. These indicators are key in the classification of urban systems by outcome of population mix or 'diversity style'.

There is an emphasis on practical and policy implications throughout: What are the options [for livelihood, identity etc] offered in a particular area/type of system? Who takes up which option? What are the implications for intervention at the local level ? What are preconditions for 'good' diversity ?

PhD Students

Jessica Ogden (1996)
Grace Bantebta-Kyumohendo (1997)
Kay Russell (2001)
Stephanie Shanks (2002)
Patrick Hazard (2002)
Eleanor Hutchinson (2003)
Roberto Alzetta (2003)
Sian Upton (2002)