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Department of Land Economy

Environment, Law & Economics

Studying at Cambridge


Dr Elisabete A Silva

Dr Elisabete A Silva

Reader - Spatial Planning

Director of the M.Phil "Planning Growth and Regeneration"

Director of the Lab of Interdisciplinary Spatial Analysis (LISA Lab)

School Equality Champion

Office Phone: (01223) 337141


Dr Elisabete A. Silva is a University Reader in Spatial Planning in the Department of Land Economy, University of Cambridge.  Dr. Silva started working in Cambridge as a University Lecturer - Assistant Professor (2006-2012), was Tenured (2009), Senior Lecturer - Associate Professor (2012-2017),  is now a Reader in Spatial Planning (since Oct. 2017).

She lectures and is the course coordinator of: in "Urban and Environmental Planning I" (PGR01), "Planning Policy and Practice" (Paper 14); Mixed-Research Methods (GIS)(RM01);     She was the Director of the PhD Programme (2008-2015);  she  is now  Director of the M.Phil  "Planning Growth and Regeneration"

Director of Lab of Interdisciplinary Spatial Analysis  (LISA Lab):

School Equality Champion

Editorial Board: Computers, Environment and Urban Systems (CEUS); Editorial Board : Planning Theory & Practice ; Editorial Board: Sustainable Development;

Member of the Royal Town Planning Institute (MRTPI)

Subject groups/Research projects

Lab of Interdisciplinary Spatial Analysis:

Research Interests

Dr. Silva has a research track record of 25+ years, both at the public and private sector. Her research interests are centred on the application of new technologies to spatial planning in particular city and metropolitan dynamic modelling through time. Subject areas include:  Land Use, Transportation, Spatial Analysis, Geographic Information Systems and Planning Support Systems; Space-time dynamic models, Computation and Dynamic Simulation - soft Artificial Intelligence, AI Models (particularly ABM and CA models).

For new PhD applicants: Dr Silva only considers applications that include GIS, CA/ABM or new technology in a spatial planning context (when required, all applicants need to submit English exam results with the application).

Due to the low numbers of female researchers in the areas of computation models and methods applied to Spatial Analysis, Dr. Silva strongly encourages female applicants, in particular, females from Africa, South America, India and the Middle East.

Key Publications



  • 2010 A Planner’s Encounter with Complexity, (with G. de Roo) Ashgate Publishers Ltd, Aldershot (UK). 337 pages. ISBN: 978-1-4094-0265-7. 
  • 2003 1st Conference of the Land Management Engineering: Plan-Change-Manage (With J. Ferreira, JB e Silva, E.A. Silva and  J. M. Esteves) (in Portuguese) . Instituto Superior Técnico (IST) & Núcleo de Estudos dos alunos de Território (NET), Lisboa. 43 pages ISBN: 972-8152-76-0




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