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UCL Home  /  Geography  /  People  /  Research Students  /  Nikki Tanu

Nikki Tanu


Department of Geography
North-West Wing,
Gower Street, University College London
London WC1E 6BT



Working Title: Fixed line telephony and the changing geographical and social structure of the UK, 1869-1985

Abstract: The main aim of this PhD is to investigate the temporal and spatial patterns of residential mobility and migration and thereby using this as a measure of social mobility in Britain. It plans to do so by extracting and digitising data from telephone directory archives held by the industry partner, British Telecommunications. Because telephone directories hold a wealth of information as to where residential and commercial subscribers had been located over the course of historical time, it can reveal insights into the historical geographies of the UK that would not be found elsewhere. This research is also envisioned to supplement existing research at the UCL Consumer Data Research Centre (CDRC) in the residential geographies of populations in the U.K. through the analysis of Anglo-Saxon surnames.

Supervision: Professor Paul Longley (Principal) and Professor James Cheshire (Secondary)



2020 – Present: MPhil Human Geography (ESRC Funded), University College London

2017 – 2020: BA Geography with Quantitative Methods, University College London