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Dr David Sweeting

Dr David Sweeting

Dr David Sweeting
B.A.(Portsmouth), M.Sc.(Lond.), Ph.D.(Portsmouth)

Senior Lecturer in Urban Studies

Social Science Complex,
8 Priory Road, Bristol BS8 1TZ
(See a map)

+44 (0) 117 954 5569


David specialises in local and urban governance studies. He has research experience both within the UK and in international comparative context. David’s particular interests are in political leadership in cities and local citizen engagement. He has recently completed a research project that examines the introduction of a directly elected mayor in Bristol. His latest edited book 'Directly elected mayors in urban governance' is to be published by Policy Press in March 2017. 

David has worked on a projects on local political leadership in Spain, on local councillors in comparative perspective, and on various projects examining different aspects of urban governance funded by ESRC, the Nuffield Foundation, EPSRC, CLG, ODPM, and the European Commission.

Research projects



David studied Social Policy at the University of Portsmouth for his first degree, before studying MSc Public Policy and Administration at the London School of Economics (LSE). He returned to Portsmouth for his PhD in local democracy.

His first academic post commenced in 1998 in the Cities Research Centre at the University of the West of England (UWE). He worked for nine years as a Research Fellow on various research projects. He left UWE in 2007 to take up a lectureship in the School for Policy Studies at the University of Bristol. In between he was fortunate enough to hold a postdoctoral research fellowship at the Autonomous University of Madrid (UAM). He teaches at undergraduate and postgraduate levels. 


David teaches on undergraduate and postgraduate units in the School for Policy Studies on various aspects of local governance and public policy. 


My area of expertise lies in the study of local government, often in comparative perspective. I have conducted research on local political leadership, citizen participation, and local councillors, both in the UK and Europe.

  • local government
  • local councillors
  • directly elected mayors
  • local government in Europe
  • Recent publications

    View complete publications list in the University of Bristol publications system

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