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Dr Frances Brill
Central House
Upper Woburn Place
Dr Frances Brill profile picture
  • Honorary Lecturer
  • The Bartlett School of Planning
  • Faculty of the Built Environment

Before joining Dalberg I was the Margaret Tyler Research Fellow in Geography at Girton College, the University of Cambridge. During my time at Cambridge I was involved in local water access issues and researching more sustainable development practices. At this time I developed connections with those working to challenge extractive practices in housing in London, particularly those challenging the remedial works surrounding the UK's 'Building Safety Crisis'. I was also lucky enough to be part of the RGS' Urban Geography Research Group committee where I led the dissertation prize coordination for 2021-22. 

Before Cambridge I was a Research Fellow at BSP, UCL. I was lucky enough to be part of Mike Raco's What is Governed in Cities project, analyzing the governance of residential real estate investment in London. This research was particularly concerned with emerging classes of investor and investment projects, and conceptually drew on ideas around what it means to be in a (perpetual) state of crisis. Whilst at UCL I was the ECR representative for the Regional Studies Association. 

I completed my PhD in Geography at UCL. During this time I worked briefly at the DPU, UCL and as a research assistant on a number of smaller projects. 

Research Summary

I am a strategy consultant working at Dalberg Advisors, based in their Geneva Office. At UCL I am an honorary lecturer, teaching and researching on the built environment. My research straddles the global north and south. I am primarily concerned with three issues:

1. Community resistance to extractive practices through the case of the UK's Building Safety Crisis. I am interested in how regulatory failure, private sector capture, extractive practices being normalized and tenant organization have unfolded to create a system of extreme physical and financial precarity which is being challenged effectively, in some cases. 

2. The role of non-state actors in leading development practices and norms. This has included most recently analyzing investment in housing systems and how this has evolved in the context of housing crises and changing investment demands in other investment classes. I have mainly examined this through the case of London's BTR but more recently have explored it in other cities. For my work on developers I was awarded the AESOP 2020 Best Published Paper Award.

3. Thinking comparatively and with/through the not-here. Asking the question of 'why is it different here'?

Teaching Summary

Throughout my academic career I have enjoyed teaching. I am currently supervising students on BTR, spatial planning and urban investment at the Bartlett. 

At Cambridge I was fortunate enough to be invited to teach on the Global Urbanisms course where I taught on private property, development and investment. At UCL I have lectured on urban problems, London as a field site and Economic Geography. I have led seminars on a range of topics, including Gender and Sexualities at the Centre for Multidisciplinary Studies, Politics and Society and the history of London. 

I am an associate fellow of the HEA and have published book chapters and research articles on teaching through research, particularly through in-field work. 

Academic Background
2015   Master of Science London School of Economics and Political Science
2013   Bachelor of Arts University of Cambridge
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