We are very pleased to announce the winners for the RSA Student and Early Career Awards 2018. According to the Regional Studies Association Award Committee, the winners have made an original and outstanding contribution to the field of regional studies in 2018. The Awards ceremony will take place at the President’s Event on 15th November 2018 in London, UK. Have a look on Flickr at our photos from the 2017 President’s Event.

Nathaniel Lichfield Award (this award is for recent Master’s graduates)

David Dodds, Newcastle University, UK

Path creation in the periphery: the case of Sunderland’s software industry

This paper—which is his master’s thesis—explores how new paths of economic growth emerge in peripheral regional economies. Taking Sunderland’s vibrant software industry as its empirical case, the study is located within a flourishing body of work adopting evolutionary approaches to economic geography and comprises a richly-textured qualitative case study constructed through detailed engagement with policymakers, entrepreneurs, financial intermediaries and other key actors in the city.

“I’m honoured to accept this award from the RSA, whose work to support students in the field of regional development studies continues to be invaluable”.


RSA PhD Student Award (this award is for registered PhD students)

Lydia Schoeppner, Peace and Conflict Studies, University of Manitoba, Canada

The role of international organizations in dealing with sovereignty conflicts in the Arctic (2015) In: The Journal for Peace and Justice Studies, volume 24: 1, pp. 50-86.

Her work is dedicated to enhancing processes of decolonization in the polar region of the Arctic. Her research focuses on the Inuit Circumpolar Council as a voice for the Canadian and Greenlandic Inuit in the conflicts in the Arctic. One of the cutting-edge approaches in this research is the application of indigenous research methods on the micro but also on the macro level, pushing towards a new understanding of community as an Inuit collective.

“Thank you very much for the recognition of my work. I am honored to be this year’s recipient of the RSA PhD Student Award.”


RSA Routledge Early Career Award (this award is for early career researchers)

Jana Maria Kleibert, Leibniz Institute for Research on Society and Space (IRS) Research Department “Dynamics of Economic Spaces”, Germany

Global Production Networks, Offshore Services and the Branch-Plant Syndrome published in Regional Studies (2016) In: Regional Studies, 50:12, pp. 1995-2009.

Her work seeks to contribute to an understanding of regional economic development under globalisation. In particular, she has focused on the role of services offshoring to countries in the global South and the repercussions of this changing international division of labour for regions in India and the Philippines. Her research has offered new insights into what happens in places where new employment opportunities arise and where global production networks extend their reach to new sites for back-office service delivery.

“I am delighted to hear this and grateful to the Regional Studies Association and Routledge for this appreciation of my work.”