Dr Peter Lee BSc, MSc, PhD

Dr Peter Lee

School of Geography, Earth and Environmental Sciences

Contact details

School of Geography, Earth and Environmental Sciences
University of Birmingham
B15 2TT

Peter’s research and teaching focuses on the relationship between people and place based social exclusion, how policies are designed to reduce exclusion and increase competitiveness whilst reconciling the uneven trajectory and function of places.

He has led on a number of housing market, regeneration and planning related research and consultancy projects for a diverse range of clients and funding bodies including the Department for Communities and Local Government, The Joseph Rowntree Foundation (UK), the Economic and Social Research Council, the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council, the European Commission and the Japan Society for the Promotion of Science.

In addition Peter has worked on a number of consultative projects for regional agencies, local authorities and third sector agencies across the UK including the West Midlands and North East regional assemblies, Sheffield and Leeds City Regions and Liverpool and Birmingham City Councils. He was instrumental in delivering the current West Midlands Regional Housing Strategy and Birmingham City Council’s Housing Strategy and his research informed the establishment of the £2 billion Housing Market Renewal Pathfinder Programme (2003-2011). 

His recent collaborative research with Waseda and Toyohashi University in Japan has focused on resilience in the context of post-Fukushima planning responses and interventions designed to address sudden shock events in the context of long-term population shrinkage. His current research in the context of the UK and Europe is examining resilient policy responses to low demand and population shrinkage (3SRECIPE: JPI Urban Europe ERA-NET Cofund Smart Urban Futures; €1,7m 2017-2020), social justice and housing strategy (Democratic Foundations of the Just City, SNSF to 2020) and action research for the purpose of developing a collaborative model of sustainable development with local communities affected by large-scale urban transformation projects (USE-IT!: ERDF, Urban Innovative Actions; €3.64m 2016-2019).


  • BSc (Hons.) Bristol University
  • MSc (distinction) Computing Science University of York
  • Ph.D University of Birmingham  


Dr Peter Lee is Reader in Collaborative Planning at the Centre for Urban and Regional Studies, University of Birmingham. He was previously Research Associate at Heriot-Watt University, School of Planning and Housing (1992-1994) and Research Assistant at Bristol University (1989-90 and 1991-92).  Peter has worked largely in the area of poverty, social exclusion, housing markets and spatial planning and, as PI or Co-I, delivered almost 100 research, consultancy and CPD projects. 

Peter’s research has contributed to planning, housing and social policy interventions that benefit disadvantaged households and communities and have had a major policy impact at all spatial scales.  His work has balanced academic enquiry with policy impact research, consultancy and knowledge transfer.  He has made a significant impact on local, regional and national housing policies and has influenced research on urban and regional planning internationally, having held research grants across Europe, Japan, Brazil and South Korea.  Peter is committed to developing planning, housing and regeneration research and practice that is inter-disciplinary, works at scales, is context specific, collaborative and inclusive.


Dr. Lee leads or contributes to the following modules:

  • Research Methods (Postgraduate)
  • Urban Regeneration and Renewal (Postgraduate)
  • Understanding Neighbourhood Poverty (Undergraduate)

Postgraduate supervision

Peter supervises doctoral research students in the area of collaborative planning & urban futures and housing and social inclusion.

He currently supervises the following students:

James Bowles The role of geospatial data in third sector service provision: developing a framework for research and practice (2018-2021)

Gina Hasibuan Sustainable Affordable Housing Development in Indonesia (2016-2019)

Upuli Perera Socio and environmental governance in affordable housing delivery through urbanism based neighbourhood planning Commonwealth Scholarship (2013-2017)

Naeemah Yusof Planning and developing a walkable city as barriers for elderly’s walkability (2014-2018)

Students successfully supervised in the past 5 years:

Abdulmohsen Alshebli Transition to an alternative urban planning pathway for Riyadh, Saudi Arabia (2018)

Tae Suk Kang The Existence and Causes of Social Exclusion on Public Rental Housing Estates in South Korea: The Universalism of the Undeserving Poor (2014)

Monir Moniruzzaman Rural women, energy poverty and energy justice in east central region of Bangladesh (2016)

Potential students interested in similar areas of research can contact Peter directly.


2016-2019: USE-IT! (Unlocking Social and Economic Innovation Together), European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) Urban Innovative Actions (UIA) (€3.64m) http://www.uia-initiative.eu/en/uia-cities/birmingham


USE-IT! (Unlocking Social and Economic Innovation Together) aims to link micro assets in poor neighbourhoods to macro assets (capital and infrastructure projects) in order to reduce displacement and maximise economic and social benefits of urban development for marginalised residents. USE IT! is a collaboration involving fourteen city and regional partners across the public, private and third sector.  The research is developing a group of community researchers that are engaging on urban transformation projects around Icknield Port Loop, which is undergoing regeneration and connecting local communities to planning activities within the university.

European Commission ERA Net ERA-NET Co-fund Smart Urban Futures Call: Smart Shrinkage Solutions - Fostering Resilient Cities in Inner Peripheries of Europe (3S RECIPE); (€1.7m) (2017-2020): A partnership with seven cities and academic institutions across Europe developing, testing the resilience of policy solutions on urban shrinkage.


The democratic foundations of the Just City: Power sharing and urban planning politics in three European cities (£225k - Swiss national Science Foundation) (2017-2020): An international comparative framework for analysing just planning politics integrating earlier work on spatial planning systems, urban political leadership and institutional power sharing. The project investigates the role of political leadership and the conditioning role of their regulatory, institutional context directed towards the ideal of the Just City in three case study cities: Birmingham, Zurich and Lyon.


Responding to Slow Burn and Sudden Shock Events (JSPS – with Toyohashi University and Waseda University, Japan): This research aims to explore how policy responses to slow burn and sudden shock events in two Japanese regions affected population shrinkage have adapted to different kinds of shocks.  By differentiating between ‘slow burn’ and sudden shock events we aim to re-position the concept of redundancy within social scientific debates on resilience and how adaptive capacity and agents of change need to develop an evolutionary response to crises and slow-burn events.


Socio spatial inequalities: exclusion, segregation, fragmentation and resilience in public housing in Brazil and UK (FAPESP,2016): Brazil with the aim of understanding commodification processes and public policies on  housing; this will be used to develop broader model of resilience for ODA countries undergoing commodity exploitation and rapid urbanisation.


2012-2013: Planning Responses to ‘Shock’ and ‘Slow-Burn’ Events: the Role of Redundancy in Regional Resilience (UK and Japan) (ESRC and JSPS)

2012: Open Source Food Distribution: Delivering Distributed Food Manufacture to Enhance Resilience (EPSRC)

2010-2011: Conceptualizing and measuring resilience: the critical role of redundancy (University of Birmingham)

Research groups

  • Centre for Urban and Regional Studies
  • Resilience and Urban Living
  • Society, Economy and Environment

Other activities

  • Member of organising and development committee for West Midlands Futures (2010~)
  • Member of Audit Commission’s Housing Markets best practice advisory panel (2007-08)
  • Seconded head of research and strategic intelligence, Birmingham City Council, Housing Department (2003-2004)
  • Member of Joseph Rowntree Foundation housing investment and neighbourhood change Steering Group  (2005-2007)
  • Member of Numeric Date Sets in Teaching and Learning Task-Force (ESRC/JISC) (2000-2003)
  • Member of deprivation and housing satisfaction JRF Steering Group  (1998-1999)
  • Inaugural Chair Moseley Forum, Birmingham (1998-2000)


Recent publications


Coaffee, J & Lee, P 2016, Urban resilience: planning for risk, crisis and uncertainty. Planning, Environment, Cities, 1st edn, Red Globe Press. <http://www.macmillanihe.com/t/9781137288820/>

Lee, P & Ferrari, E 2010, Building Sustainable Housing Markets. Chartered Institute of Housing.


Lee, P 2018, 'An evolutionary approach to regional housing resilience: the role of agency and the ‘epistemic community'', Housing Studies. https://doi.org/10.1080/02673037.2018.1523374

Lee, P, Mykhnenko, V & Asano, J 2018, 'Study on reconstruction from a natural disaster and the progress of urban shrinkage: the case of the eruption disaster of Mt. Unzen-Fugendake, Shimabara, Japan', Urban and Regional Planning Review, vol. 5, pp. 135-152. https://doi.org/10.14398/urpr.5.135

Lee, P 2013, 'Housing Market Renewal: Evidence of Revanchism or a Response to ‘Passive Revanchism’ Supporting ‘Citizenship of Place’?', Housing Studies, vol. 28, no. 8, pp. 1117-1132. https://doi.org/10.1080/02673037.2013.803518

Kennedy, C, Theodoropoulos, G, Sorge, V, Ferrari, E, Lee, P & Skelcher, C 2011, 'Data Driven Simulation to Support Model Building in the Social Sciences', Journal of Algorithms & Computational Technology, vol. 5, no. 4, pp. 561-582. https://doi.org/10.1260/1748-3018.5.4.561

Trickett, L & Lee, P 2010, 'Leadership of 'subregional' places in the context of growth', Policy Studies, vol. 31, no. 4, pp. 429-440. https://doi.org/10.1080/01442871003723358

Lee, P 2010, 'Outer Estates. On the edge: a collection of articles looking at how housing estates on the peripheries can be transformed', New Start, pp. 47-49.

Chapain, C & Lee, P 2009, '"Editorial - Can we plan the creative knowledge city? Perspectives from Western and Eastern Europe." In "Can we plan the creative knowledge city?"', Built Environment, vol. 35, no. 2, pp. 157-164.

Lee, P, Burfitt, JA & Tice, AJ 2009, 'The Creative Economy and Social Sustainability: Planning for Opportunity and Growth', Built Environment, vol. 35, no. 2, pp. 267-280. https://doi.org/10.2148/benv.35.2.267

Chapter (peer-reviewed)

Alhamoudi, A & Lee, P 2018, Smart Growth and Real Estate Development in Saudi Arabia. in S Wilkinson, T Dixon, N Miller & S Sayce (eds), Routledge Handbook of Sustainable Real Estate. Routledge, pp. 370-380. <https://www.routledge.com/Routledge-Handbook-of-Sustainable-Real-Estate/Wilkinson-Dixon-Miller-Sayce/p/book/9781138655096>


Lee, P, Malpass, R & Rowlands, R 2010, Competitiveness and social exclusion: The importance of place and rescaling in housing and regeneration policies. in Housing, Markets and Policy.


Liu, X & Lee, P 2008, 'City region competitiveness and housing: spatial and statistical analysis', Proceedings of International Forum on Metropolitan Regions Development, 1/01/08 pp. 134-137.

Commissioned report

Trickett, L, Rowlands, R, Lee, P & Liu, X 2009, Assessing the potential for integrated strategic working in the region. Not Known.

Kyung, S, Barber, A, Groves, R, Lee, P, Trickett, L, Watson, C & Weingaertner-Kohlscheen, C 2009, The development of urban regeneration policy in the United Kingdom. vol. Stage 2, Centre for Urban and Regional Studies, University of Birmingham.

View all publications in research portal


Analysis of the interaction between economic, social and housing market processes leading to problems of social exclusion; segregation and polarisation and the role of the planning and housing system in responding

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