Ian joined the University of Manchester in 2017 from the University of Liverpool where he spent over five years working in the Department of Geography & Planning.
Ian's career has included a variety of academic (BSc Northumbria, MSc Sussex, PhD Newcastle), practitioner and contract consultancy roles in the UK, Europe and internationally . These have enabled him to bring together Local Government and practical policy-making/delivery experiences into the teaching and research environment through a practical understanding of how policy is formed, how decision-making occurs, and how implementation is delivered.
Aligning an understanding of these approaches to planning underpins Ian's work on urban greening, Green Infrastructure planning and landscape policy. This examines the relationship between policy and practice in the discussion, development and evaluation of urban greening. It also provides scope to evaluate the changing landscape of planning policy and its impacts upon the delivery of sustainable or meaningful places.
Ian's work focusses on a number of areas of urban greening including financing green space delivery, the role of perceptions in sustainable cities, and the influence of various actors on the decision-making process for environmental management. Part of this process is developing a better understanding of how rhetoric and delivery differ in the planning and management of cities.
Ian has received funding from NERC, the Valuing Nature project, RTPI, Defra/Natural England and the Newton Fund to support research into green infrastructure policy, perceptions and practice in the UK and internationally. He has also worked with UN Habitat and the Landscape Research Group to examine the utility of planning and landscape policy.
Outside of academia Ian has experience of green infrastructure practice through working with advocacy organisations (Community Forests in North-East England, 2005-2008) and as a Green Infrastructure Development Officer in East Cambridgeshire (2009-2011) where he coordinated the delivery of the £1 million Ely Country Park Project and was a key strategic partners in the production of the the 2nd Cambridgeshire Green Infrastructure Strategy (Cambridgeshire Horizons, 2011). He was also an author of the Liverpool Green & Open Space Review (2015-16), which assessed the nature of green space funding in Liverpool and started to identify where new sources of financial support could be located.