UCL Department of Geography


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UCL Home  /  Geography  /  People  /  Academic Staff  /  Jacob Fairless Nicholson  /  Dr Jacob Fairless Nicholson

Dr Jacob Fairless Nicholson

Associate Lecturer (Teaching) in Human Geography

UCL Department of Geography
Room G20
26 Bedford Way
London, WC1H 0AP






I am an associate lecturer in human geography. My research interests span historical, cultural, political, and urban geography, and my principal research focus is on spaces of non-formal education. Within this, I am concerned with the local and global politics of education practice, and the intersections of education and empire in Britain.

My doctorate at the Department of Geography, King’s College London was funded by the Arts and Humanities Research Council, with fieldwork in the US, UK, and the English-speaking Caribbean. I also spent three months as a visiting research fellow at the Library of Congress in Washington D.C.. I received my previous degrees from University College London and King’s College London.

Publications can be accessed here.

Early academic careers

Focusing on first-in-family students and ECRs, this research project funded by UCL’s IAS (2021) investigated how discourses of exclusion or inclusion shape pathways into research careers for students from non-traditional backgrounds studying Geography and cognate disciplines. The project identified what inclusion and exclusion looks like, to what extent conditions of inclusion and exclusion are derived from disciplinary, social, or familial hierarchies, and highlighted key stages at which inclusion and exclusion is experienced.

Black education spaces

This research examines several distinct yet interconnected Black education spaces that formed part of the Black education movement in London from the late 1960s to the late 1980s including adult education programmes, anti-universities, and international youth exchanges. This project was funded by a doctoral studentship from the London Arts and Humanities Partnership (2016-2019).

Film and photography

I have contributed to a broad range of public-facing initiatives as a digital image practitioner, producing film and photography media for research and education institutions. This has included producing a short essay film in collaboration with PI Luke Dickens (King’s College London) for the British Academy Summer Showcase project ‘The Fun Palace and the Future City: Youth Work, Utopia and the Re-imagining of London’s East End' (2019). I have also worked closely with PI Helen Limon (independent researcher) and Co-I Jasjit Singh (Leeds University) as a video practitioner on the AHRC funded project ‘(r)agency? Lived Practices of Anger’ (2016) to produce the short documentary ‘Expressing Anger through Art: British Sikh Artists on 1984’. In 2014, my work ‘Hackney WickED time lapse’ was displayed at the Victoria and Albert Museum Friday Late event ‘Hackney Wick Takeover’.

Module convener

  • GEOG0028 Urban Geography

Tutor & lecturer

  • GEOG0151 Thinking Geographically I

  • GEOG0012 Thinking Geographically II

  • GEOG0025 Political Geography and Geopolitics

  • GEOG0015 Global Events

  • GEOG0016 Practice of Geography

Academic support & feedback hours

My Term 2 ASF hours will take place on Thursdays and Fridays at the following times:

Thursday 13:00-14:00 (online and in-person)

Friday: 17.00-18.00 (online and in-person).

Please book a ten-minute meeting via this link, and note my ASF hours do not include reading week.