Professor Alison Heppenstall


My research interests are focused on the development of artificial intelligent (AI) and machine learning (ML) methods. I work with individual-based methods such as agent-based modelling, for simulating individual behaviour and understanding processes and evolution of geographical systems. Recent work has focused on Smart Cities and Big Data analytics.

I hold an ESRC-Alan Turing Institute Fellowship.


  • Research Cluster Leader (CSAP)
  • Director of Innovation (CDRC)
  • ESRC-Alan Turing Fellow

Research interests

Research interests

For current research information, please see my personal webpage.

  • The use of artificial intelligence (AI) solutions in geography.
  • Machine Learning and Evolutionary algorithms
  • Agent-based modelling.
  • Big Data analytics
  • Development of tools for identifying chaotic behaviour and social networks within complex systems.
  • Methods for visualisation of hidden spatial structures in dynamic data sets.
  • Complexity; identification/modelling of and manipulation in geographical systems.
  • Neuroevolutionary tools (application to flood forecasting).
  • Development of SI-Models.
  • Geostatistics.
  • Retail modelling.
<h4>Research projects</h4> <p>Any research projects I'm currently working on will be listed below. Our list of all <a href="">research projects</a> allows you to view and search the full list of projects in the faculty.</p>


  • PhD
  • MSc GIS
  • BA (Hons) Archaeology

Professional memberships

  • Fellow of the Royal Geographical Society

Student education

I teach Geocomputation and GIS at both undergraduate and postgraduate levels.

Research groups and institutes

  • Centre for Spatial Analysis and Policy

Current postgraduate researchers

<h4>Postgraduate research opportunities</h4> <p>We welcome enquiries from motivated and qualified applicants from all around the world who are interested in PhD study. Our <a href="">research opportunities</a> allow you to search for projects and scholarships.</p>