Recent Publications

Our research programme is based on the concept of spatial planning and whilst our empirical work is partly grounded in the region, it is built on strong international, interdisciplinary and theoretical references. Our particular strength is the staff team who have built a track record in scholarly and applied research and a wide ranging portfolio of publications, research grants and doctoral studentships. Since 2000, the Institute has more than doubled its staff base, built an international reputation and attracted a stream of major research funding linked to our main areas


ISEP. (2015) A Sense of Place: Multidisciplinary Essays in Honour of Malachy McEldowney.




Murray, M. (2014) The cultural heritage of pilgrim itineraries: the Camino de Santiago, Journeys: The International Journal of Travel and Travel Writing, Vol. 15, No. 2,
pp. 65-85. 


Boland, P. (2014) ‘Neoliberal competitiveness and spatial planning: the ‘path to economic nirvana’ or a ‘post-political strategy’ and ‘dangerous obsession’?’ Environment and Planning A, Volume 46, Issue 4, pp. 770-787.



Muir, J. (2014) ‘Neoliberalising a divided society? The regeneration of Crumlin Road Gaol and Girdwood Park, North Belfast’, Local Economy 29 (1-2): 52-64.



Muir, J. (2013) ‘Whose Urban Regeneration? Two Belfast case studies’ in Leary, M.E. and McCarthy, J. (eds.) Routledge Companion to Urban Regeneration, London: Routledge.


Murtagh, B. (2013) ‘Urban regeneration and the social economy’ in Leary, M.E. and McCarthy, J. (eds.) Routledge Companion to Urban Regeneration, London: Routledge.


Murray, M. (2013) Connecting growth and wealth through visionary planning: the case of Abu Dhabi, Planning Theory and Practice, Vol.14, No.2, pp278-282.


Neill, W.J.V., Murray, M. and B. Grist (eds) (2013) Relaunching Titanic: memory and marketing in the new Belfast. London: Routledge. 



Muir, J. (2013) ‘The dynamics of policy-making under UK devolution: social housing in Northern Ireland’, Housing Studies. Published online 26th June 2013), 



Boland, P. (2013) ‘Sexing up the city in the international beauty contest: the performative nature of spatial planning and the fictive spectacle of place branding’. Town Planning Review, in press.



McKay, S, Murray, M & MacIntyre, S, (2012), Justice as Fairness in Planning Policy-Making, International Planning Studies, Vol. 17, No. 2, pp147–162



Walsh, K, O’Shea,E, Scharf, T & Murray, M (2012), on behalf of the Healthy Ageing in Rural Communities Research Network, Ageing in changing community contexts: Cross-border perspectives from rural Ireland and Northern Ireland , Journal of Rural Studies


McKay, S, Murray, M & Pinghui, L , (2011), Pitfalls in Strategic Planning: Lessons for Legitimacy, Space & Polity, Vol. 15, No. 2, pp107–123



Murray, M & Neill, W.J.V., (2011), Strategic Spatial Planning in Berlin-Brandenburg: A Requiem for Balanced Development?, Planning, Practice and Research, Vol. 26(1), pp. 107-121(2012), 


Gaffikin, F. & Morissey, M., (2011), 'Planning in Divided Cities: collaborative shaping of contested space', Oxford: Blackwell Publishing

Planning in Divided Cities examines urban planning and policy in the context of deeply contested space, where identity and cultural affinities are reshaping cities. Throughout the world, contentions around identity and territory abound, and in Britain, this problem has found recent expression in debates about multiculturalism and community cohesion. These issues are most visible in the urban arena, where socially polarised communities co-habit cities also marked by divided ethnic loyalities. The relationship between the two is complicated by the typical pattern that social disadvantage is disproportionaly concentrated among ethnic groups, who also experience a social and cultural estrangement, based on religious or racial identity


Murray, M, (2011) The Imagery and Language of Spatial Consciousness in Planning Within Northern Ireland. Journal of Irish Scottish Studies, 4(2).


McAreavey, R and Muir, J. (2011) Playing ethics: A new game for social researchers? International Journal of Social Research Methodology Vol. 14 (5) pp.175-194.



McAreavey, R and Swindal, M.G. (2011), in Shortall et al. (eds) Rural Transformations and Rural Policies in the UK and US. London and New York: Routledge.



McAreavey, R. and McDonagh, J. (2011) Sustainable rural tourism: lessons for rural development. Sociologia Ruralis Volume 51(2) pp175-194.



Barry, J. and Ellis, G. (2011), Beyond consensus? Agonism, republicanism, and a low carbon future, Renewable Energy and the Public, From NIMBY to Participation, pp29-42; London, Earthscan, ISBN978-1-84407-863-9.


Rhodes, M.L., Murphy, J., Muir, J. and Murray, J.A. (2011) Public Management and Complexity Theory: Richer Decision-Making in Public Services, London: Routledge.

By adopting a Complex Adaptive Systems (CAS) approach to public services, this book seeks to increase policy-makers’ and practitioners’ understanding of the factors that may enable more effective public service decision-making and provision. The authors apply a CAS analysis to Irish case studies in urban regeneration and health care information systems, to generate new insights into issues, processes and participants in public service management.