The Bartlett Development Planning Unit


DPU doctoral student awarded Royal Geographic Society Dudley Stamp Memorial Award

3 May 2018

Kerry Bobbins

Kerry Bobbins, a doctoral student at The Bartlett Development Planning Unit (DPU), has been awarded a Royal Geographical Society (with IBG) Dudley Stamp Memorial Award. Kerry’s doctoral research was selected by the trustees of the Dudley Stamp Memorial Award for its contribution to Geography and international co-operation. She is one of eleven doctoral students and postdoctoral researchers at UK Higher Education institutions selected for this award each year.

Kerry’s research aims to describe the use of concepts of the environment and infrastructure in Johannesburg, South Africa, and how they have influenced the way infrastructural projects are planned, managed and financed. Kerry has chosen this topic for her project as few studies consider the configurations of actors, processes and practices involved in infrastructure provision, and how they change to accommodate for environmental functions.

Her research argues in addition to policy and technical approaches, the histories, actors, and local context play a role in shaping the way concepts of the environment and infrastructure are translated and used in practice. To investigate this, Kerry will use qualitative research methods and case studies to indicate how environmental approaches for infrastructure services have been used by actors in Johannesburg and how they have shaped infrastructural projects.

Knowledge generated by her project will contribute towards rethinking approaches to infrastructure and sustainability in relation to global trends. This includes understanding in what ways technical concepts gain meaning in planning and management processes and how this influences the production of space in the city.


Photo credit: Tshegofatso Mamushi.