Skip to content

Toggle service links

OpenSpace Research Centre

The Open University's Centre for Geographical and Environmental Research

About the OpenSpace Research Centre

OpenSpace, founded in 2009, promotes research into geographical and environmental questions. We are motivated by the broad challenges that face the world, including: how can we live together better; how can we inherit the past responsibly; how might we bequeath better futures to others?

Our approach to these questions is distinguished by a commitment to open geographical and environmental problems in an inter-disciplinary and collaborative context. OpenSpace advances research that aims to be empirically rich, theoretically embedded, conceptually innovative, methodologically rigorous, and socially relevant (see Research Themes).

Our focus is on the spatial, temporal, and social processes that determine outcomes to geographical and environmental problems. We develop these issues by exploring their cultures, materialities, and practices; by attending to questions of justice, power, and responsibility; by extending the application of geographical and environmental thinking (see Research Projects).

Our aim is to stimulate ongoing and sustained conversations across a range of research topics with an emphasis on the exchange of ideas. These collective practices have nurtured theoretical and applied collaborations and research projects, nationally and internationally. OpenSpace champions innovative approaches to knowledge dissemination and transfer, especially around engagement with new and diverse publics.

OpenSpace operates through collaborative and experimental partnerships amongst our core researchers drawn from across the Open University. We have a strong external orientation with a wide international network of individuals and institutions both within and beyond the academy (see External Partnerships and the Open Learn Geography Matters collection).

Our vibrant research culture is underpinned by a range of events including a seminar series, the annual Doreen Massey lecture, opportunities to workshop research in progress, reading and writing groups, and a variety of project-specific events.