Neil Brenner is Professor of Urban Theory and Director of the Urban Theory Lab at the Graduate School of Design (GSD), Harvard University, Cambridge, MA, USA.
His writing and teaching focus on the theoretical, conceptual and methodological dimensions of urban questions. His work builds upon, and seeks to extend, the fields of critical urban and regional studies, comparative geopolitical economy and radical socio-spatial theory. Major research foci include processes of urban and regional restructuring and uneven spatial development; the generalization of capitalist urbanization; and processes of state spatial restructuring, with particular reference to the remaking of urban, metropolitan and regional governance configurations under contemporary neoliberalizing capitalism.
He was previously Professor of Sociology & Metropolitan Studies at New York University.
He holds a PhD in Political Science from the University of Chicago (1999), an MA in Geography from UCLA (1996); and a BA in Philosophy, Summa Cum Laude, from Yale College (1991).
His most recent book is the edited volume, Implosions / Explosions: Towards a Study of Planetary Urbanization (Jovis, 2014), which elaborates the conceptual foundations for the ongoing work of the Urban Theory Lab on contemporary forms of urbanization. He is also the author of New State Spaces: Urban Governance and the Rescaling of Statehood (Oxford University Press, 2004), Cities for People, not for Profits: Critical Urban Theory and the Right to the City (Routledge 2011); Henri Lefebvre, State, Space, World (University of Minnesota Press, 2009); The Global Cities Reader (Routledge, 2006); Spaces of Neoliberalism: Urban Restructuring in North America and Western Europe (Blackwell, 2003); and State/Space: A Reader (Blackwell, 2002).
In 2014, Neil Brenner was selected as a Thompson Reuters Highly Cited Researcher. Based on Web of Science data, his scholarly publications were ranked among the top 1% most-cited globally in the general social sciences between 2002 and 2012.
Neil Brenner was a Moderator of the Workshop “Planetary Scale” at the 5th International Forum for Sustainable Construction dedicated to “Infrastructure Space” held April 7-9, 2016 in Detroit, USA.