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School of Geography

Robin Lovelace Dr Robin Lovelace

Contact details

Room Room 2.04, ITS, 34 - 40, University Road
School of Geography
University of Leeds
University Road
Leeds LS2 9JT   UK


+44 (0) 113 34 30691

Office hours:
09:00 - 17:00

Research overview

I am a strong believer in the wider impact of geographers in the context of rapid economic and environmental change: “With the certainty of peak oil and possibility of effective climate change regulations, transport will become increasing expensive in future years. Thus, the tendency towards geographical homogenisation of economic activity may go into reverse (Greer 2009; Curtis 2009)” (Lovelace 2014). This possibility has been interpreted as a 'bad thing' by many, and even labelled apocalyptic by some. My wider research interest is to explore how we can live in a low energy future, whilst simultaneously improving quality of life. Bicycle paths, for example, can reduce oil dependence, environmental impacts and improve health; one of my research aims is to assess how to maximise these benefits by locating new paths in optimal locations.

My personal interests are closely tied into my academic research. In 2009, for example, I set up RobRod's repairs, a bicycle repair company dedicated to fixing unloved bicycles in York (Lovelace 2009). In 2010 I cycled from France to Spain, and used the experience to explore the possibility of holidays in a period of declining oil production (Lovelace 2010).

These insights are useful, but to gain a wider understanding of the world we need many more data points, and this led to my PhD project investigating the energy impacts of commuting in England and zooming-in on Yorkshire, based on the 2001 Census (see completed thesis here). Leeds is the idea place for me to build on this experience as a world-leading institution for 'geocomputation' and applied quantitative geography more generally. Via the GeoTALISMAN project I am funded by the National Centre for Research Methods (NCRM), which encourages dissemination of research. I have jumped at this opportunity: spatial data analysis is an empowering skill that should be available to anyone. Thus (as of January 2014) my three most recent publications are focused on education and outreach. A larger and more up-to-date list of outputs is maintained on the publications page of my personal website.


A selection of Robin's presentations can be found here.