The Bartlett Centre for Advanced Spatial Analysis


CASA Student Wins Royal Geographical Society Prize

16 January 2020

Joshua Yee

Congratulations to Joshua Yee (CASA MSc Smart Cities & Urban Analytics, 2019), who has been awarded the Royal Geographical Society Population Geography Research Group’s Bob Woods Postgraduate Dissertation Prize.
The Bob Woods Prize is open to entries from students in universities across the whole of the UK, so the competition is fierce and this is a notable achievement. The dissertation is linked with (former CASA Visiting Professor) Karen Chapple’s Urban Displacement Project - and Joshua took part, last week, (above) in a mini-conference at the UC Berkeley Institute for Data Science – “Predicting Neighbourhood Change Using Big Data and Machine Learning” – where he presented his dissertation work along with some other familiar faces:

Joshua's dissertation is published as a CASA Working Paper here. There is also an accompanying interactive website here. All the code can be found here.

On winning the prize, Joshua said: "It's an absolute joy and honour to be this year's recipient of the Bob Woods Postgraduate Dissertation Prize, awarded by the Royal Geographical Society's Population Geography Research Group. Beyond being simply a personal achievement, I believe that this prize is a resounding testament to the good work that CASA has done and will continue to do through its MSc programmes. I would therefore like to extend my utmost thanks to all staff at CASA, with special mention going to Dr Adam Dennett for his supervision of this dissertation and to Dr Andrew Maclachlan for facilitating the submission for this award."

Describing his studies at CASA, he went on, "The research undertaken through my dissertation, titled 'Unpacking the Nuances of London's Neighbourhood Change & Gentrification Trajectories', was focused on examining the variegated nature of differing neighbourhood change and gentrification typologies. Underlying this effort was the idea that a robust understanding of the intricacies inherent in varying neighbourhood change and gentrification forms was critical for comprehending the socio-spatial forces at play and to craft effective urban policies. Hence, tapping on a suite of diverse datasets and a novel empirical approach that combined methods from statistics, spatial analytics and Machine Learning, the research identified and mapped out the spatial patterning of neighbourhood change and gentrification trajectories occurring in London. Observed dynamics and trends of gentrification were subsequently modelled and used for predicting the future frontiers of this phenomenon to deliver highly-contextualised insights."
CASA Director, Dr Adam Dennett, commented, "Big congratulations to Joshua and I think this is a shining example of the fantastic work that our MSc students can produce – I for one am very proud."