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UCL Home  /  Geography  /  People  /  Academic Staff  /  Amy Horton

Amy Horton

Dr Amy Horton

Lecturer in Economic Geography

Degree tutor: BSc Economics & Geography

UCL Department of Geography
Room G17, 26 Bedford Way, London, WC1H 0AP.

a.horton@ucl.ac.uk

Tel: +44(0)20 7679 5540

I am an economic geographer specialising in finance, labour and urban development. My research examines different approaches to financing social infrastructures of care and housing, and the implications for those who live and work in them.

One major area of work examines how care homes for older people in the UK are funded, built and governed, including in times of crisis and pandemic. I'm interested in what conditions support good quality care services and the retention and wellbeing of care staff.

A second concern is how local government, property developers and communities seek to shape urban development, especially the ownership and financing of housing and space for local traders.

A third strand of work - with academics, artists, activists and others - explores solutions to problem debt and alternative routes to financing our futures. Here I take a feminist perspective on transitioning to caring and just economies in the context of climate change.

In terms of teaching, I'm responsible for the Economics and Geography BSc. I lead the two undergraduate economic geography modules, as well as supervising a range of student research on areas such as labour, finance and urban political economy.

Key projects:

Understanding the financial impact of COVID-19 on the UK care home sector – implications for businesses and the workforce

This research explores the impacts of the pandemic on care homes' financial sustainability and their workforce, with the aim of identifying recommendations for employers and policymakers. As the co-investigator on this project, I am working in partnership with Warwick Business School, policy experts at the Centre for Health and the Public Interest, and representative bodies from the sector. The project is funded by UK Research & Innovation (2020-2022). https://ficch.org.uk/

Democratising Social Infrastructure? The Haringey Development Vehicle

Together with Dr Joe Penny, community members and councillors, I am working to document and analyse the campaign to 'Stop Haringey Development Vehicle'. The project explores different visions for urban development in relation to housing, local government financing and democracy. It aims to contribute to debates about financialised entrepreneurial urban governance, new municipalism and social infrastructure. The project was awarded a grant from the UCL Social & Historical Sciences Dean's Strategic Initiative Fund (2020).

Financialisation of Care: Investment and organising in the UK and US

This research examined financial investment in care homes for older people, as well as efforts by labour and community groups to ensure that care is valued more highly, in the UK and the US. The project was funded through a doctoral studentship from the Economic and Social Research Council (2014-17).

Publications can be accessed here (without paywall).

Books & doctoral thesis

Harker, C. & Horton, A. (eds.) 2022. Financing Prosperity by Dealing with Debt. London: UCL Press. (Free to download here.)

Horton, A. 2017. Financialisation of Care: Investment and organising in the UK and US. Doctoral thesis.

Journal articles

Warnock, R., Taylor, F. M. & Horton, A. 2022. Should we pay research participants? Feminist political economy for ethical practices in precarious times. Area. 54 (2): 195-202. https://doi.org/10.1111/area.12790

Horton, A. 2022 [online 2019]. Financialization and non-disposable women: Real estate, debt and labour in UK care homes. Environment and Planning A: Economy and Space. 54 (1): 144-159. https://doi.org/10.1177/0308518X19862580.

Horton, A. 2021 [online 2020]. Liquid home? Financialisation of the built environment in the UK’s ‘hotel-style’ care homes. Transactions of the Institute of British Geographers. 46: 179– 192. https://doi.org/10.1111/tran.12410.

Cockayne, D., Horton, A., Kay, K., Loomis, J., & Rosenman, E. 2018. On economic geography’s “movers” to business and management schools: A response from outside “the project.” Environment and Planning A: Economy and Space50(7), 1510–1518. https://doi.org/10.1177/0308518X18796506.

Peer-reviewed book chapters

Horton. A. 2022. Transitioning to caring economies: What place for debt? In: Financing Prosperity by Dealing with Debts. C. Harker & A. Horton (eds.). London: UCL Press.

Groombridge, M., Horton, A. & Harker C. 2022. Credit Unions in the UK: Promoting Saving and Dealing with Debt. In: Financing Prosperity by Dealing with Debts. C. Harker & A. Horton (eds.). London: UCL Press.

Horton, A. & Wills, J. 2018. The Living Wage and In-Work Poverty. In: H. Lohmann and I. Marx, ed. Handbook on In-Work Poverty. Cheltenham: Edward Elgar Publishing. pp. 228-244.

Policy reports and commentaries

Horton, A. 2021. Financial Impacts of Covid-19 on Care Homes: Implications for the Workforce – Review of the Evidence and Research Gaps. September.  https://ficch.org.uk/news-and-events/news/policy-briefing/.

Horton, A. 2019. Financing care. Fabian Society. 4 July. https://fabians.org.uk/financing-care/.

Commissioned book reviews

Horton, A. 2021. The death of the self-made man. Review of The Care Manifesto: The politics of interdependence, by The Care Collective. The Political Quarterly. https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/full/10.1111/1467-923X.12975.

Horton, A.  2019. The New Enclosure: The appropriation of public land in neoliberal Britain, by Brett Christophers. Space and Polityhttps://doi.org/10.1080/13562576.2019.1667765

I am committed to developing research in collaboration with groups beyond academia, building on my experience of policy research, advocacy and media work in the past. I have presented my research to individuals and organisations involved in campaigns to change policy and culture in relation to care.

In 2021, I was awarded a Policy Impact and Engagement Fellowship to develop partnerships around research on the financial impacts of covid on care homes and staff. This briefing paper offers a rapid review of evidence and our research plans.

Another current research project with Dr Joe Penny and campaigners seeks to learn lessons from a community campaign that prevented the demolition, part privatisation and top-down regeneration of social housing and public assets in North London. Working with diverse community activists, we are creating a history of the Stop Haringey Development Vehicle campaign and reflecting on what other communities, councils and researchers can learn from this experience and its legacies.

Module convener

  • Economic Geography I
  • Economic Geography II: Geography of Money and Finance
Tutor & lecturer
  • Thinking Geographically I & II
  • Debt, Finance and Prosperity (UCL Institute for Global Prosperity)

Research supervision

    • Undergraduate and postgraduate dissertation supervision
    • PhD subsidiary supervision:
      • Migration and remittances: A study of remittances from Nigerian migrants in London - Ngozi Fakeye
      • The Paradiplomatic Relations between La Línea de la Concepción and the British Overseas Territory of Gibraltar - Beatriz Moraes Vidal
      • Work and Life at the Bottom of the Pay-scale: Experiences of Exploitation of Low Paid Workers in Global London - James Frederick Green
      • Between governance and resistance: Housing financialisation and the emerging grassroots housing activism in urban China - Tianzi Li (IGP)
      • Urban governance, civil society and neighbourhood participation: conceptualising the relational work of Settlements - Ben Hughes (Bartlett School of Planning)
    Academic support & feedback hours
    These run during terms 1 and 2 (not in reading week). For online meetings, please email for an appointment.
    • Tuesday 4-4.50pm in person (G17, 26 Bedford Way)
    • Tuesday 5-5.50pm online
    • Thursday 4.45-5.35 online