School of Geography and the Environment undergraduate student Eleanor Pendle (Brasenose College) has been awarded the Royal Geographical Society's Social and Cultural Geography Research Group Undergraduate Dissertation Prize for research she conducted on the superblock in Poblenou, Barcelona.
Superblocks are an urban planning strategy that aim to orient a city around the needs, health, and wellbeing of people and the environment rather than cars. Looking into this initiative through literature on 'rights to the city' and the concept of urban citizenship, Eleanor analysed how rights, responsibilities, and exclusions have been intersected into Barcelona's Poblenou neighbourhood.
The judging panel commented on how the work closely engaged with, unpacked, and extended existing literature in this extremely relevant part of geography, as well as noting the efforts required to carry out research in Spanish and English.
On winning the award Eleanor commented: "I have absolutely loved my time studying Geography at Oxford and still can't quite believe it's over! The course here balances incredible breadth with nuanced depth, allowing us to study a plethora of geographical subjects with the invaluable guidance and insights of our tutors and lecturers. It has been such a privilege to spend the last three years delving into topics from contested environmentalisms and the politics of resistance to urban creativity and (neo)colonial power; I could not have had a more fulfilling, thought-provoking, or enriching undergraduate experience."
She is currently looking into postgraduate study with a view to pursue a career working with think-tanks and NGOs.
Eleanor outside the Geography department during a visit to Oxford over the summer
A fieldwork image taken during Eleanor's time in the Poblenou superblock in summer 2019
The Brasenose geographers (Eleanor, Leonard, Sarah, and Larissa) on a fieldtrip to Berlin in Second Year