The Bartlett Centre for Advanced Spatial Analysis

Dr Duncan Smith

Dr Duncan Smith

Lecturer in GIS Visualisation

Centre for Advanced Spatial Analysis

Faculty of the Built Environment

Joined UCL
1st Apr 2014

Research summary

My research interests are in the study of urban geography, the built-environment, transport accessibility and sustainability using spatial analysis, visualisation and modelling methods. Examples of my work are viewable at my research blog citygeographics. Recently great advances have been made in the quality and availability of urban spatial data. These advances are utilised in research at CASA to better inform planners and stakeholders on current urban trends and the impacts of policy decisions. For example my research thesis uses detailed network analysis, business survey and census data to analyse and map how the changing economic geography of the global city-region London is having dramatic impacts on travel patterns and transport sustainability. 

Teaching summary

Beginning in 2013, Duncan has been teaching GIS, spatial analysis and statistics to undergraduate and masters students at the Bartlett Planning School, drawing on his ten years of experience of applying GIS in urban research.


University College London
Doctorate, Doctor of Philosophy | 2011
University of Edinburgh
Other higher degree, Master of Science | 2005
University of Edinburgh
Other higher degree, Master of Arts | 2003


Duncan is Lecturer in GIS and Visualisation at the Centre for Advanced Spatial Analysis, University College London. Additionally he is Course Director of the MSc and MRes in Spatial Data Science and Visualisation at CASA.

He studied urban geography and GIS at the University of Edinburgh, and then worked at the transportation research consultancy DHC on sustainable travel projects around the UK. In 2006 Duncan came to CASA UCL to undertake an ESRC funded studentship into built-environment research using GIS, supervised by Prof. Mike Batty and Dr. Andy Hudson-Smith. The thesis titled Polycentricity and Sustainable Urban Form was completed in 2011. Amongst CASA's range of research projects, Duncan has focussed on urban modelling applications, and also worked with Greater London Authority on providing spatial modelling support for planning analysis.

Duncan joined LSE Cities in 2012, working on urban sustainability research for cities such as Stockholm and Copenhagen. He also worked on high profile mapping and graphic design publications for the Urban Age conferences in 2012 and 2013, hosted in London and Rio de Janeiro respectively.

Returning to UCL in 2014, Duncan is currently Lecturer in GIS and Visualisation, and Co-Investigator on the ESRC RESOLUTION project, investigating transport inequalities in London and Sao Paolo.