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Dr Andy Yuille

ESRC Postdoctoral Fellowship

Andy Yuille

LEC Building




Research overview

I combine 15 years’ experience of working with NGOs with an academic approach informed by Science and Technology Studies and the idea of public sociology. My interests are interdisciplinary and impact-oriented, building on my experience beyond academia in influencing environmental, planning, transport and economic policy.

I am interested in the relationships between society and environment, and in particular:

  • how we make public decisions about environmental change
  • how public participation in decision-making is facilitated or excluded
  • experiments in democracy and innovative governance practices that seek new ways of engaging publics in decision-making
  • different ways of generating and representing knowledge about environment, and what happens at the interfaces of these knowledges
  • how different forms of knowing and valuing are included or excluded, legitimised or silenced by decision-making processes

These interest have been shaped by my earlier career. I previously worked as an independent environment & planning consultant and as a Senior Policy and Campaigns Officer for CPRE, the countryside charity. I chaired North West Environment Link, an alliance of the major environmental NGOs in North West England, and have been a member of various innovative governance structures, e.g. the North West Regional Assembly and the Lancaster Local Strategic Partnership.

Research projects and funding

I currently hold an ESRC Postdoctoral Research Fellowship, “Experiments in democracy: Knowing, caring and acting in neighbourhood planning and beyond”. I’m working with NGOs to develop alternative policy proposals to influence the UK Government’s proposed radical planning reforms, and guidance for practitioners to help incorporate the kinds of community knowledge and values that are still routinely excluded from planning. I’m also working on extending my analysis of neighbourhood planning to other sites of participatory democracy to try to better understand how to avoid community empowerment initiatives reproducing existing power imbalances.

 Previous research projects

  • Senior Research Associate: Supporting local officers and politicians in three UK cities to implement rapid climate action, 2020
  • Senior Research Associate: Impacts of Neighbourhood Planning in England, 2019-2020
  • Research Associate:  Exploring opportunities for circular nutrient economies in grassland farming systems, 2019-20
  • ESRC-funded PhD: Knowing and caring: performing legitimacy in Neighbourhood Planning, 2014-2019


I convened the MA in Environment, Culture and Society in the Department of Sociology in 2019-2020, teaching the two core modules:  Theories and Debates in Environment and Culture - Welcome to the Anthropocene; and Methods in Science and Technology Studies.


PhD Sociology (Lancaster University)

MA (distinction) Values and the environment (Lancaster University)

BA (Hons) Philosophy 2:1 (Lancaster University)

Contact me

Email me at a.yuille1@lancaster.ac.uk or andyyuille@gmail.com

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