Professor Ed Manley

Professor Ed Manley


Ed Manley is a Professor of Urban Analytics in the School of Geography, and member of the Centre for Spatial Analysis and Policy (CSAP) research cluster. He is affiliated with the Leeds Institute for Data Analytics (LIDA), he is a Turing Fellow at the Alan Turing Institute, and Honorary Professor at University College London (UCL).

Ed joined Leeds from UCL in 2019, where he completed his Engineering Doctorate, before moving onto becoming a Lecturer and Associate Professor at The Bartlett Centre for Advanced Spatial Analysis. Ed is an Associate Editor of the Applied Spatial Analysis and Policy journal, and chaired the GIScience Research Group at the Royal Geographical Society between 2018 and 2021, where remains a Fellow. He was winner of the Phillip Leverhulme Prize for Geography in 2022.

Ed is the Pro-Dean for Research and Innovation in the Faculty of Environment, co-Director of LIDA: Societies, and co-leads the Special Interest Group in Behavioural Models and Machine Learning at the Alan Turing Institute. Previously he served as Director of Research, Interim Vice Dean: Research in the Bartlett Faculty of the Built Environment, UCL, and Interim Co-Head of School. 


  • Pro-Dean for Research and Innovation
  • Co-Director of LIDA: Societies

Research interests

Ed’s research deepens our understanding of human mobility in cities, using new forms of data and computational methods to capture how spatial behaviours shape urban activity and dynamics.

He is particularly interested in the role of bounded rationality and spatial cognition in travel decision-making, and the adaptation of behaviour in response to short and long-term shocks. His research uses a range of data science and machine learning methods, agent-based modelling, and network science, with theory drawn from diverse disciplines such as urban geography, transportation, spatial cognition, judgment and decision-making, and sociology. He also has interests in the role of data visualisation in communicating complex datasets for decision-making, and synthetic data generation for privacy preservation.

Ed has been involved with over £15m of funded research projects as Principal and Co-Investigator from diverse sources, including the EPSRC, ESRC, MRC, ERC, Wellcome Trust, and the Leverhulme Trust. He is a Co-Director of the Consumer Data Research Centre (CDRC), a major investment of the ESRC. 

Ed’s research has been published in numerous top tier journals including Nature, PNAS, Scientific ReportsIJGIS, Cities, The Lancet, Nature MedicineJournal of Transport Geography, and is a co-author of Agent-based Modelling and Geographic Information Systems: A Practical Primer published by Sage.

<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>

Professional memberships

  • Fellow of the Royal Geographical Society
  • Fellow of the RSA
  • Fellow of the Higher Education Authority

Student education

I teach on the MSc Urban Data Science and Analytics, leading Analytics for Urban Policy (GEOG5404M) and the associated course fieldtrip.

Research groups and institutes

  • Institute for Spatial Data Science

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>