Susan Parnell is a Global Challenges Research Professor in the School of Geography at the University of Bristol and Emeritus Professor at the African Centre for Cities (ACC) at the University of Cape Town.

She has held previous academic positions at Wits University and the University of London (SOAS). She was a Leverhulme Visiting Professor at UCL in 2011/2, Emeka Anyaoku Visiting Chair University College London in 2014/15 and Visiting Professor at LSE Cities in 2017/18.

She has been actively involved in local, national and global urban policy debates around the 2030 Sustainable Development Goals and is an advocate for better science policy engagement on cities.

She is the author of numerous peer-reviewed publications that document how cities, past and present, respond to policy change. Her most recent books include the co-authored Building a Capable State: Post Apartheid Service Delivery (Zed, 2017) and the co-edited The Urban Planet (Cambridge, 2018).

Sue is currently on the Board of the International Institute for environment and Development (IIED) and serves as a member of the African Centre for Cities Advisory Board and had previously served on several NGO structures.

  • In Press: The politics of urban poverty, exclusion and institutional violence in Johannesburg, in Megacities, K. Koonings and D. Kruijt (eds.), Zed.
  • In Press: Cities, concepts, ideals, in S. Parnell, (ed) Key Issues in the 21st Century: Urban Studies – Society, Sage, London (ISBN 978 1 84787 257 9).
  • In Press: The Emergence of a British Colonial Policy for Urban Africa, 1939-1945, in F. Demissie (ed.) Colonial Architecture and Urbanism in Africa: Intertwined and Contested Histories, London, Ashgate (With R, Harris). (ISBN 978-0-7546-7512-9).
  • In Press: Regional development: a new pathway to a more equitable and resilient Cape Town? In E. Pieterse ed.) Counter Currents: Experiments in Sustainability in the Cape, Jacana, Cape Town, (with G. Clark).
  • 2008: Une utopie urbaine nécessaire: les droits socio-économiques pourtous dans la ‘bonne ville, Dubresson, A. Jaglin, S. (eds). Le Cap après l’apartheid :Gouvernance, aménagement et gestion urbaine. Karthala, Paris, 251-273.
  • 2008: Consolidating Developmental Local Governmentin M. van Donk E. Pieterse and M. Swilling and S. Parnell (eds.) Consolidating Developmental Local Government: Lessons from the South African Experience, University of Cape Town Press, Cape Town, 1-24. (ISBN: 978 1 919 8904 8).
  • 2007: Urban governance in the South: the politics of rights and development, in Cox, K., Louw, M and Robinson, J. (eds.) A Handbook of Political Geography, Sage, London, 595-608. (ISBN: 10 0761943277, ISBN: 13 987 07619432 73).
  • 2007: The politics of transformation: Defining city strategy in Johannesburg, in (ed. K. Segbers) The Making of Global City Regions: an Exploration of Johannesburg, Mumbai/Bombay, Sao Paulo, and Shanghai, John Hopkins Press, Baltimore, 139-167. (ISBN 13-9780-8018-8515-0, ISBN 190 0 8018 8515 9).
  • 2005: A matter of timing: African urbanisation and access to housing in Johannesburg, in Brycson, D. and Potts, D. (eds.) African Urban Economies: Viability, Vitality or Vitiation?, Palgrave Macmillan, 229-251. (With J. Beall and O. Crankshaw). ISBN: 1-4039-9947-3.
  • 2004: Victims, Villains and Fixers: the Urban Environment and Johannesburg’s Poor in Human Resource System Challenge VII: Human Settlement Development, edited by Saskia Sassen and Peter Marcotullio, in Encyclopedia of Life Support Systems (EOLSS), Developed under the auspices of the UNESCO, Eolss Publishers, Oxford, UK, [] (With J. Beall and O. Crankshaw). Reprinted from Journal of Southern African Studies.
  • 2004: Race, Inequality and Urbanisation in the Johannesburg Region, 1946-1996′, in J. Gugler (ed.) World Cities Beyond the West: Globalisation, Development and Inequality, Cambridge University Press, 348-370. (With O. Crankshaw). (ISBN: 0-521-53685-5).
  • 2003: Social Differentiation and Urban Governance in Greater Soweto: A Case Study of Post-Apartheid Meadowlands, in R. Tomlinson, B. Beauregard, L. Bremner, X. Mangcu (eds.). Emerging Johannesburg, Routledge, 197-21 (with J. Beall and O. Crankshaw). (ISBN: 0-415-93559-8).
  • 2002: Urban Water Supply and Sanitation and Social Policy: Lessons from Johannesburg, South Africa, in Townsend P. and Gordon D. (eds.): World Poverty, Policy Press, Bristol, 251-270. (With J Beall, and O. Crankshaw). (ISBN: 1-86134-395-7).
  • 2002: Developmental Local Government for post-apartheid reconstruction, in S. Parnell, E. Pieterse, Mark Swilling, and D. Wooldridge (Eds.) Democratising Local Government: the South African Experiment, University of Cape Town Press, (With E. Pieterse), 83-96. ISBN 0-620-22-848-2
  • 2002: The value of indicators as a tool for local government, in S. Parnell, E. Pieterse, Mark Swilling, and D. Wooldridge (Eds.) Democratising Local Government: the South African Experiment, University of Cape Town Press, (With M. Poyser), 259-270. ISBN 0-620-22-848-2
  • 2001: Reconstruction/disaster planning: South Africa, International Encyclopedia of Social and Behavioral Sciences, Volume: 5.3 Article: 65, Elsevier Press.
  • 1999: Comprendre le passe: une condition essentialle pour la reconstruction des villes de l’apres apartheid, in Rennes, J-M. (ed.) La Rechereche sur la Ville en Afriqu du Sud, Anthropos, Paris, 50-62, (With O.Crankshaw).
  • 1999: Local government’s delivery challenge, in FCR (ed.) Making your IDP Work, FCR, Cape Town, 25-32.
  • 1998: Confronting the legacies of urban poverty and inequality, in SANGOCO (ed.) ‘Speak Out’ Poverty and Inequality Hearings, SANGOCO, Johannesburg.
  • 1998: Interpreting the 1994 African Township Landscape, in Judin, H. and Vladislovic, I. (eds.) Blank: State of Architecture and Urban Planning, NaiMaker, Rotterdam, 438-443. (With O. Crankshaw). Translated and reprinted in Japanese and French
  • Ten Plus One: Special Issue of Urban Architecture Chronicle 1990-2000, Vol.19, 2000, 204209 and Les Annales de la Recherche Urbaine 85, 1999, 126131).
  • 1996: Gender discrimination in the post-apartheid state’s housing budget, in Budlender, D. (ed.) Women’s Budget, IDASA, Cape Town, 121-147.
  • 1992: Slums, segregation and the poor whites in Johannesburg, 19201934, in R., Morrell, (ed.), White but Poor, University of South Africa, Pretoria, 115129.
  • 1992: State intervention in housing provision in the 1980s, in D. Smith (ed.), The Apartheid City and Beyond: Urbanisation and Social Change in South Africa, Routledge, London, 5364.
  • 1992: Geography education in South Africa: colonial roots and prospects for change, in C. Rogerson and J. McCarthy (eds.) Geography in a Changing South Africa, Oxford University Press, Cape Town, 194209. (With H. Wesso).
  • 1991: Mafeking, in A. Lemon, (ed.), Homes Apart, Paul Chapman, London, 162173 (With J. Drummond).
  • 1991: Johannesburg, in A. Lemon, (ed.), Homes Apart, Paul Chapman, London, 129145 (With G. Pirie).
  • 1990: Upgrading ‘matchboxes’: urban renewal in Soweto, 19761986, in D., DrakakisSmith, (ed.), Economic Growth and Urbanisation in Developing Areas, Routledge, London. 238250 (With C. Mather).