The Bartlett School of Planning

Miss Elena Besussi

Miss Elena Besussi

Lecturer (Teaching)

The Bartlett School of Planning

Faculty of the Built Environment

Joined UCL
25th Sep 2006

Research summary

Research areas

Power, politics and planning

  • community-led planning
  • the politics of knowledge and evidence in planning
  • the politics of urban regeneration

  • land as financial asset; land in capital accumulation
  • public land management and disposal; public land privatisation
  • the regulation of land and property rights
  • land value capture
Capitalist city
  • economic restructuring and economic diversity
  • political economy of housing; housing privatisation;
  • wealth creation and redistribution
  • service privatisation and urban austerity
Current projects

Micropolitics of community-led planning
This research investigates through qualitative and quantitative analysis, practices of community activism and community-led planning with the aim to discuss its implications for the distribution of power in urban development decision making. Contexts for this research include: - the interaction between community activism and neighbourhood planning established in England by the Localism Act in 2011; - quantitative analysis of the social, ethnic and economic make-up of neighbourhood forums and neighbourhood planning areas in London - institutionalisation of community organising and community engagement in neighbourhood planning.

Teaching summary

I teach at both Undergraduate and Postgraduate level at the Bartlett School of Planning. For the past three years I have been mainstreaming a teaching format based on community embedded learning with the purpose of developing the role and impact of the university and its researchers in supporting community organisation through technical expertise. Community-based and collaborative learning allows students to engage with the actual protagonists and their experience of planning and urban development. This format is developed jointly with Just Space (https://justspace.org.uk)

As module coordinator
BENVGPLD - From Strategic Vision to Spatial Plan
BENVGPD3 - Collaborative City Planning Strategies

As module contributor

BENVGEPA - Planning Practices in Europe

ENVS2010 - Planning Project: Plan Making


Universita Iuav di Venezia
First Degree, Laurea | 1998


I am a Teaching Fellow in Plan Making and a PhD candidate in Planning Studies at the Bartlett School of Planning.

I have 10 years experience in academic research, teaching and professional consultancy in the UK. Between 2002 and 2005 I have been a research fellow at the Centre for Advanced Spatial Analysis at UCL and since 2006 I have been been a planning advisor supporting local residents' participation in spatial planning and urban regeneration, at Willowbrook Centre in Southwark (until 2007) and now independently. I have produced academic and professional research for national organisations (BURA, RICS) and international institutions (EU Commission).