Dr Richard Smith

Dr Richard Smith

Associate Professor, Geography

Telephone number

+44 (0) 1792 602558

Email address

Research Links

Academic Office - 215
Second Floor
Wallace Building
Singleton Campus
Available For Postgraduate Supervision


Richard G. Smith is Associate Professor in Human Geography at Swansea University in the UK.

I was educated at: Lawrence Sheriff School (Rugby), University of Hull (BA Hons, Geography 1st class), University of Bristol (PhD, supervised by Sir Nigel Thrift (Phyllis Mary Morris scholarship)). I have extensive international knowledge and experience. I have visited more than 100 countries, and presented my research and thinking at more than 50 international conferences, universities, and public events. I have over 100 publications having written predominanty on world cities, global cities, structuralism, poststructuralism, human geography, and Jean Baudrillard. 

I pioneered new relational, network and assemblage approaches in Urban Studies which have been reported on extensively in the world’s print media, and are highly-cited, reprinted and translated. My latest research continues to be concerned with introducing, explaining, developing, and inventing an approach to Urban Studies that is founded on poststructuralist philosophy - e.g. See my entry on ‘Jean Baudrillard’ for The Wiley Blackwell Encyclopedia of Urban and Regional Studies (2019). I also have a long standing research interest in Jean Baudrillard’s philosophy and oeuvre; my books include: Jean Baudrillard: Fatal Theories (Routledge), The Baudrillard Dictionary (Edinburgh University Press), Jean Baudrillard: from Hyperreality to Disappearance: Uncollected Interviews (Edinburgh University Press), Jean Baudrillard: the Disappearance of Culture: Uncollected Interviews (Edinburgh University Press).


Areas Of Expertise

  • Baudrillard Studies
  • Poststructuralist Urban Studies
  • Poststructuralism
  • World Cities
  • Global Cities
  • The Business of Cities
  • Urban Acupuncture
  • Urban Photography
  • LEGO and Urban Design

Career Highlights

Teaching Interests

My teaching on Global Cities (Year 1 and Masters) and World Cities (Year 3) is research led.

Reported on extensively in the world’s print media my research is highly-cited, reprinted and translated. Content from one highly influential paper - ‘A Roster of World Cities’ (Web of Science citation >500) - even features in the AQA AS/A Level Geography syllabus.

I speak about world cities to public, academic, and business audiences around the world and often incorporate these talks into my university teaching. Two examples which feed into my Year 1 and Year 3 teaching respectively are:

(2018) Keynote paid speaker on global cities at the 12th Luxury Real Estate Association Conference in London

(2017) Invited speaker on ‘London After Brexit’ at the major annual TEDx event in London



My latest research concerns Covid-19, global cities, skyscrapers, photography, painting as urban acupuncture, and LEGO as a form of urban design.

Visit my two research websites to learn more:

Baudrillard Studies

Website: www.baudrillardstudies.com

Poststructuralist Urban Studies

Website: www.poststructuralistcities.com


(2020-23) Co-supervisor for PhD candidate Kyle Rath, Department of Visual Arts, University of Pretoria on his project about the philosophy of information design: "Complex characters: a dialectical approach to understanding typography in the context of Barthesian and Baudrillardian philosophy" (2020-2023)

(2019-21) Commissioned essay on 'Fake Truth' for poster book and several exhibitions by the BAFTA award-winning artist Alison Jackson (exhibitions held in Stockholm, Tallinn, Vienna, and Los Angeles)

(2018-2019) Selected and sourced interviews for Laurent de Sutter to enable French publication of: (2019) Jean Baudrillard: Entretiens, 1968-2008 (Presses Universitaires de France)

(2018) Co-organized the 2nd International and Multidisciplinary Conference on Baudrillard Studies at Oxford Brookes University (5-7 September). As a part of this major 3 day conference I curated the first exhibition of Baudrillard's oeuvre - Collecting Baudrillard - which utilised a dedicated exhibition space at Oxford Brookes.

(2017-2021) Editor of the International Journal of Baudrillard Studies