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Department of Land Economy

Environment, Law & Economics
Cambridge International Behavioural Sciences and Urban Studies Symposium 19th-22nd May 2019

The Cambridge Real Estate Research Centre is pleased to announce the Cambridge International Behavioural Sciences and Urban Studies Symposium will be hosted by the University's Department of Land Economy at Newnham College on 19th-22nd May 2019.


The Cambridge International Behavioural Sciences and Urban Studies Symposium provides a platform for discussions of cutting-edge research at the intersection of behavioural sciences and urban studies.  Seventeen papers are included in the programme and will be presented and discussed extensively during the three-day symposium.

A wide range of behavioural topics are covered, including loss aversion, endowment effect, framing, mental accounting, herding, and social preferences.  These behavioural tools are applied in land use policy, development and planning problems, urban regeneration, neighbourhood conservation and urban design, immigration and internal labour migration, liability and quality of life, greening, sustainable cities, among others.

Presenters and discussants are from the UK, the USA, Australia, China, Singapore, and Hong Kong.  The symposium is a true testimony that behavioural studies is an important research stream in urban studies, as researchers in top universities across the world are using behavioural tools to address key issues in urban studies.

The symposium has no parallel sessions.  Each paper presentation session will allow ample time for discussion amongst the presenter, the discussant, and general Q&A with the audience.  Papers presented at the symposium will be considered for a special issue of Cities (theme: ‘Healthy Cities, Happy Cities’) or a special issue of Land Use Policy (theme: ‘Behavioural Land Use Policy Studies’), with an expedited review subsequent to the symposium.

The symposium is part of a research project titled “Nudging Towards a Better Financial Future:  Applying Behavioural Insights in the Development of Financial Systems in Rural China”.  The project is a collaboration between the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) and the National Natural Science Foundation of China (NSFC).

The overarching research question of this project is whether and how behavioural insights can be used to help rural residents in China make sound financial decisions, which will ultimately contribute to the sustainable economic development in China. This symposium is one of the dissemination avenues of the project.  The event is also generously supported by the Cambridge Land Economy Advisory Board and Newham College.

The Symposium Programme can be downloaded here