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Prof Robert Huggins

Fellow, Visiting Fellow

Professor at the School of Geography and Planning, Cardiff University

Robert Huggins is Professor and Chair of Economic Geography at Cardiff University’s School of Geography and Planning. He is the School’s Director of Research and Innovation as well as being the Director of the University’s Cities Research Centre and a member of the University’s Centre for Innovation Policy Research.

His research interests and expertise concern urban and regional economic development, in particular the study of behaviour, culture, competitiveness, knowledge flows, entrepreneurship, innovation, clusters and inter-organisational networks. He has published more than ninety articles in peer-reviewed journals and authored or edited numerous books. Most recently, A Behavioural Theory of Economic Development: The Uneven Evolution of Cities and Regions (co-authored with Piers Thompson), and Networks, SMEs, and the University: The Process of Collaboration and Open Innovation (co-authored with Andrew Johnston).

His research has generally been supported by external funding, including a number of successful applications to the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) and support from a wide range of UK and international funding organisations such as the European Commission and the OECD. He also has a strong consultancy track record working for bodies around the world as well as UK national government, regional authorities and the devolved administrations in Scotland and Wales.

He is the founder of the UK Competitiveness Index, and his work in the area of regional development is known internationally. He is also the co-founder of the World Competitiveness Index of Regions, with his work becoming influential in the policy field of regional economic development. Outside of Cardiff University, he is the Co-Director of the Centre for Knowledge Competitiveness and Regional Research at Shanghai Jiaotong University; a member the Global Urban Competitiveness Program; and a member of the UKRI’s Innovation Caucus.