Department of Political Science


Dr Simon Chin-Yee

Simon smiles into the camera
Lecturer (Teaching) in International Development

Room: 3.11, 36-38 Gordon Square
Email: s.chin-yee@ucl.ac.uk



I have over 15 years of experience in international cooperation and policy through multiple research roles within academia, as well as my work with the United Nations Education, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO). I joined UCL’s School of Public Policy in 2019 as a Lecturer in Global Environmental Politics, International Public Policy and Development Studies. I attained my PhD in Politics from the University of Manchester in 2018. Entitled Defining Policy: Drivers of Climate Change Policy in Kenya, my thesis was based on extensive training in international political economy and is a thorough climate policy analysis on three levels: international, regional and national. Following my PhD, I was a research fellow in the War Studies Department, King’s College London, and the London School of Economics’ Middle East Centre, before joining UCL.


My research is focused on climate change, conflict and vulnerable populations – with an emphasis on human security and climate justice on the African continent. Policymakers no longer speak of climate change solely in terms of environmental issues, but as a multiplying factor that has made its way into a broad spectrum of global political discourse, including narratives around conflict, peace and (in)security. My research links climate change to concepts of security within vulnerable populations. I achieve this by looking at diverse national and local experiences threatened by climate change. Additionally, my research examines the global climate negotiations, understanding how norms, values and rules constructed within the global climate regime have an influence on national policies.

My current research project looks at the decarbonisation of the maritime sector in eastern and southern Africa. Shipping represents a significant source of GHG emissions and is important for the economic development of low-income countries. This project aims to support countries as they consider how to achieve GHG emissions reductions, including the co-development of concrete and realistic plans both for national and international decarbonisation actions, political buy-in for implementation of these actions, as well as capacity development within country.

Uncovering Politics logo showing people with raised banners and hands in silhouette

Podcast: UCL Uncovering Politics

Hear Dr Chin-Yee speak about his research on the following podcast episode:
S7 Ep5 | Climate Change: The Road to COP27


Journal articles
Book chapters
Policy papers


I teach on the Global Environmental Politics, International Public Policy and Political Economy of Development courses. I also supervise on environmental and climate change politics, African studies and politics, and economic development and growth.