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Brandon Marc Finn's research focuses on African urbanization and deals with topics such as informality, spatial inequality, and urban sustainability. He is currently working on projects that deal with inclusive urban transformation and climate adaptation in Freetown, and urban governance and debt in Nairobi.
Finn also researches the historical origins of urban inequality and the intersection of rapid urbanization and climate change in the Global South. His longer-term project is concerned with advancing inclusive urban forms and practices for informal urban residents who are disproportionately burdened by the effects of climate change. These arms of Finn’s research program fit broad definitions of urban sustainability, as they interrogate issues of urban and economic development, settlements and climate change, and democratic urban governance. Finn has published peer-reviewed papers on these topics based on qualitative and historiographical research in several African countries.
Finn, B. (In Press) Pandemic Urbanization: How South Africa’s History of Labor and Disease Control Creates its Current disparities. Journal of Urban Affairs.
Finn, B., Cobbinah, P., (2022) African Urbanization at the Confluence of Informality and Climate Change. Urban Studies (Selected as the Editors' Choice Article)
Finn, B. (2021) The Popular Sovereignty Continuum: Civil and Political Society in Contemporary South Africa. Politics and Space, 39 (1), 152-167.
Finn, B., Kobayashi, L., (2020) Structural inequality in the time of COVID-19: Urbanization, segregation, and pandemic control in sub-Saharan Africa. Dialogues in Human Geography, 10 (2), 217-220.
Finlay, J., Finn, B. (2020) Geography’s blind spot: the age-old urban question. Urban Geography, 42 (8), 1061-1078.
PhD, Harvard University (urban planning)
MSc, University College London (urban studies)
BSocSci (Hons), University of Cape Town (environmental and geographical science)
BA, University of Cape Town (environmental and geographical studies; media and writing)