Dr. Andrew Harris

Dr. Andrew Harris

Lecturer in Geography and Urban Studies



Dr Andrew Harris is a Lecturer in Geography and Urban Studies, convenor of the interdisciplinary Urban Studies MSc and co-Director of the UCL Urban Lab. His research develops critical perspectives on the role of art, creativity and culture in recent processes of urban restructuring, and on three-dimensional geographies of contemporary cities. Working between London and Mumbai, he uses comparative frameworks to highlight particularities both between and within cities, and to fashion more diverse and cosmopolitan agendas of urban research and policy-making.

Creative cities, gentrification, verticality, infrastructure, comparative urbanism

Key Publications

Harris, A. 2015:      ‘Vertical urbanisms: opening up geographies of the three-dimensional city’. Progress in Human Geography (in press)

Harris, A. 2013:      ‘Concrete geographies: assembling global Mumbai through transport infrastructure’. City: analysis of urban trends, culture, theory, policy, action17(3), 343-360.

Harris, A. 2012:      ‘The metanymic urbanism of twenty-first-century Mumbai.’
Urban Studies 49 (13), 2955-2973.

Harris, A. 2008:      ‘From London to Mumbai and back again: gentrification and public policy in comparative perspective’. Urban Studies 45, 2407-2428.

Harris, A. 2005:      ‘Opening up the symbolic economy of contemporary Mumbai’. In Hall, T. and Miles, M. (eds.) Advances in Art and Urban Futures. Intellect Books: Bristol, UK and Portland, USA, pp. 29-41.

Projects and Collaborations

Vertical urbanism: geographies of the Mumbai flyover

Over the last two decades, there has been a spate of construction of elevated highways (flyovers) and pedestrian walkways (skywalks) across the Mumbai metropolitan region. This ESRC-funded project explores how this is more than simply a technological remedy for the city’s rapid growth. Flyovers and skywalks have been deployed by particular politicians and political parties as a very visible advertisement for their actions and development policies. The ideas, plans, consultants and technologies involved in their construction have been used in attempts at asserting and positioning Mumbai as ‘world class’. And their design and maintenance have created and reinforced divides between social groups with access to private vehicles and those living and working below these structures. The project shows how new three-dimensional frames of analysis are required if we are to begin to open up the social and political complexities of urban change in a mega-city such as Mumbai. Given the stark environmental implications of a continued rapid growth of car use in urban India, these forms of analysis will be imperative to begin reframing and reimaging priorities and possibilities for transport planning in cities of the global South.



Teaching interests

Processes of urbanization in South Asia with specific reference to Mumbai

Areas of PhD research supervision.

– Urban infrastructure especially transport
– Vertical urbanisms
– Urban regeneration, gentrification, creative cities
– Art, space and the city
– The travel/transfer of urban policy and planning