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Miss Elena Besussi
Central House
14 Upper Woburn Place
Miss Elena Besussi profile picture
  • Lecturer (Teaching)
  • The Bartlett School of Planning
  • Faculty of the Built Environment

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).

Research Themes
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
01-SEP-2012 Teaching Fellow The Bartlett School of Planning UCL, United Kingdom
01-SEP-2007 – 31-AUG-2014 Teaching Fellow The Bartlett School of Architecture UCL, United Kingdom
01-SEP-2007 – 31-AUG-2012 Post Graduate Teaching Assistant The Bartlett School of Planning UCL, United Kingdom
Academic Background
1998   Laurea Universita Iuav di Venezia
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