Dr Sophie Yarker

Research Associate

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I am a Research Associate based in the Manchester Institute for Collaborative Research on Ageing (MICRA) working on the Ageing in Place in Cities project. 

My academic background is in both Sociology (BA Hons) and Human Geography. I was awarded a PhD in Human Geography from Newcastle University in 2014. This was an ESRC-funded study of the nature and extent of local belonging and attachment to place in the context of urban regeneration. The themes of belonging, community and urban regeneration are themes I have continued to explore in throughout my subsequent research positions. After working as a Teaching Fellow in Geography at Newcastle University I moved to Aberystwyth University in 2016 and worked across two ESRC-funded projects investigating the changing nature of civil society in local communities. I joined the Sociology department at the University of Manchester in 2018 as a Research Fellow working on the Ambition for Ageing programme funded by the Leverhulme Trust.


My research interest are around how we can build more inclusive urban neighbourhoods particularly in the context of urban regeneration and population change. Specifically I am interested in how we conceptualise and understand feelings of belonging and attachment to the places in which we live and how these understandings can better inform processes of urban regeneration. These interest are focused around three main themes;

-       Collaborative and inclusive forms of urban development 

-       Social innovation within the community and voluntary sector 

-       Conceptualising local neighbourhoods and feelings of belonging and attachment to local communities


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