Our diverse research portfolio explores and explains the complex relationships between societies, economies, governments, and the environment.

Each of our five departments brings a different perspective to our collective endeavour to push the boundaries of knowledge, innovate methods and help tackle global challenges.   

The latest evaluation of research excellence in British higher education institutionsREF2021, ranked research in the Global Development Institute in the top two in the UK, Architecture and Planning, Property and Environmental Management in the top 5, and the Manchester Institute of Education in the top 10. Both Geography and the combined unit of Architecture and Planning, Property and Environmental Management achieved a very significant rise in grading of research output quality.  

Our long-standing dedication to developing meaningful partnerships with local, national, and international organisations delivers research which makes a difference to communities across the globe.   

We remain committed to disciplinary and inter-disciplinary research excellence across a broad set of agendas, while highlighting our collective excellence across four priority themes.

Our guiding themes

  • Understanding and responding to the root causes of inequalities
  • Providing theoretical and practical expertise on cities and infrastructure
  • Revealing insights into environmental change and sustainability
  • Developing digital methods, perspectives and solutions. 

Our research structures and groups – including the Manchester Urban Institute – help us to provide a stimulating, supportive and inclusive research environment through which the next generation of research scholars and leaders can thrive.