Declan Fairey: Migration and Urban Planning

I learned about the internship with Migration Working Group North West shortly after completing my BA Geography Degree. Throughout my time at University I had developed a particular interest in the complex relationships which exist between different human groups, and how these manifest in the spatial dimension. I therefore viewed the Migration and Urban Planning internship with the Social Sciences Department as an excellent opportunity to develop upon my existing geographical knowledge whilst enhancing my understanding of important contemporary issues. The internship also provided me with an introduction to key concepts in the field of planning, an area of study which I hope to pursue further in the future.

My work as an intern involved me researching existing literature focused upon Migration and Urban Planning in an effort to evaluate the existing academic discourse and identify any substantial gaps in current knowledge. My reading encompassed a variety of sources which drew on case studies from urban areas in many countries across the globe. Amongst the key concepts and themes which were explored as part of the literature review were Social Cohesion, Super-Diversity, Hyper-visibility, ‘Rights to the City’ in terms of public space, Residential Segregation and Urbanization.

Throughout my Internship, I received guidance and advice when required from my supervisor Dr Zana Vathi. This helped me to conduct my research effectively in order to reach substantiated, useful conclusions. This internship was a rewarding experience which allowed me to hone my research and writing skills in a practical setting, thereby improving my future employment prospects.