Our Faculty

Chua Beng Huat

Research Areas
Professor Chua Beng Huat received his PhD from York University, Canada. He has previously served as Provost Chair Professor, Faculty of Arts and Social Science (2009-2017), Research Leader, Cultural Studies in Asia Research Cluster, Asia Research Institute (2000-2015); Convenor Cultural Studies Programmes (2008-2013) and Head, the Department of Sociology (2009-2015), National University of Singapore.

His research interests focus on Urban and Housing Studies, Cultural Studies in Asia and Comparative Political Economy of Southeast Asia.

He published his latest book, "Liberalism Disavowed: Communitarianism and State Capitalism in Singapore" in September, 2017.
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Urban Studies Modules
  • Housing and Social Inequality
  • Urban Studio 1 Capstone

Jane Jacobs

Research Areas
Professor Jacobs researches social and cultural aspects of cities and urban life. She has published widely on urban identity & difference, heritage & memory, tourism & the culture industries, housing & home, and architecture in society.  She is a specialist in visual and qualitative methodologies. Her most recent book is Buildings Must Die: A Perverse View of Architecture (MIT Press, 2014) and she currently co-curates a blog on architecture in Singapore.
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Urban Studies Modules
  • Introduction to Urban Studies
  • Divided Cities

Nick R. Smith

Research Areas
Dr. Smith is a scholar of urban transformation, planning, and policy. Using a combination of ethnography, spatial analysis, and archival research, his work explores processes of rapid socio-spatial transformation. Over the past decade, Smith’s research has focused on peri-urban China, where he has conducted extensive research on the development and planning of village communities. His current research looks at the history of Chinese industrial zones and the role of China in the urban development of Southeast Asia. 
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Urban Studies Modules
  • Urbanisation in China
  • Understanding Urbanisation
  • Living on the Edge: The Experience of Peri-urbanisation

Valentina Zuin

Research Areas
Dr Valentina Zuin is interested in making cities more liveable and sustainable, especially for the poor. Her specific interests include water and sanitation planning and policies, informality, slum upgrading and sustainable urban service provision in developing country settings.

Her research and teaching are influenced by her 10 years of experience living and working in developing countries cities in Sub-Saharan Africa, Latin America, and South Asia. Dr Zuin has worked in various capacities for international non-governmental organisations (NGOs), multilateral donors, and developing country governments.
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Urban Studies Modules
  • Introduction to Urban Studies
  • Research Methods in the Social Sciences

Yi’en Cheng

Research Areas
Dr Yi’En Cheng researches on global education, transnational mobilities, and youth citizenship as they intersect with discourses around global cities and urban life. He is particularly interested in the formation of subjectivities vis-a-vis state and cultural regimes of class and gender. His past and ongoing projects include transnational marriage and familyhood, student migration and time-spaces, as well as neoliberalising higher education and youth citizenship. These works have been published in highly-regarded journals in the field of human geography, including Annals of the Association of American Geographers, Antipode, Environment & Planning A, Gender, Place & Culture, Global Networks, and Social & Cultural Geography. Methodologically, he is especially keen on the use of qualitative, ethnographic methods as a reflexive tool for interpreting social life.
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Urban Studies Modules
  • Introduction to Urban Studies
  • Youth Urbanism: Global Trends, Local Perspectives
  • Research Methods in Social Sciences

Shin Eun Jin

Research Areas
Dr Shin's research and teaching interests lie in the intersection of transportation planning, urban structure, and social inequality. She gained her BS and MS degrees in Civil, Urban, and Geosystem Engineering from Seoul National University, and her Master’s degree in Urban Planning from the University of Washington, Seattle.
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Urban Studies Modules
  • Introduction to Urban Studies
  • Current Issues in Urban Studies: Urban Mobilities