SC Mugshot 2Hello and a big welcome to jographies – a blog about geographical perspectives on running. It is managed and curated by me – Simon Cook – a human geographer and runner based at Birmingham City Univeristy.

Jographies is not your typical blog about running. It explores running from a range of social, cultural, creative and geographical angles – prodding it and probing it to reveal new perspectives. Together, we’ll journey through the cultures and practices of running to make the familiar unfamiliar, and the unfamiliar familiar.  I hope to stir some debate and discussion through the blog so please feel free to comment and join in.

Much of the content is based on my academic research. My research concerns everyday active practices: the ways in which they happen, how they change, and what they can tell us about societies and spaces. My PhD research explored the rise of run-commuting in the UK and ongoing research projects focus on multi-modal mobilities, post-collision cycling practices and running during social distancing.  Expect to see content relating to this work and my wider academic interests in running and active practices.

I joined Birmingham City University in 2017 and the Faculty of Health, Education and Life Sciences, where I teach academic and research skills. I completed my PhD in Human Geography at Royal Holloway, University of London in 2020, investigating run-commuting in the UK. My running research started earlier however, having studied running geographies during both by MA in Cultural Geography at Royal Holloway between 2013 – 2014, and during my BA (Hons) Geography at Plymouth University between 2010 – 2013. My love for running was fostered much earlier, however, in a town just outside of Birmingham.

11 thoughts on “About

  1. Geographies of fidelity says:

    This is literally amazing stuff Simon, so great to see you have got so much enthusiasm for your research and very clear but lucid ideas and esp. like your commitment to dissemination beyond articles and your use of various multimedia outlets although we are of the same generation I am still quite stone age when it comes to technology. Someone at Plymouth when they were at Aber spoke in glowing terms about you to some of us and looks like you are going to go a very long way in Geography. Best of luck for the master’s research.

    1. simoniancook says:

      Thank you so much for your kind words Robert. I am certainly trying my best to get through the minefield of academia and research. Can I ask which Plymouth staff it was – Richard Yarwood by any chance? Hope the PhD is going well. I’ve noted your RGS sessions with Laura price with interest, hope to see you there!

      1. Geographies of fidelity says:

        Thanks Simon, yes it was Richard Yarwood, I didn’t know who he was on about really until I met you at Gregynog, such a small world, everyone knows everyone else. Also spoke to Pete Adey over dinner the other day because he was back in Aber. I think unlike your session we have not really engaged/or are engaging with co-production, we are in one sense perhaps whilst I think the term mobilises a lot of things I do think it is also rather constraining as a concept and not keen on such things and I note there are several sessions that have gone anti or are critical of co-production. Anyways I might be interested in your session and go along to it hopefully you’ll get Pete Merriman coming along to it.

      2. simoniancook says:

        It is a small world! It will be interesting to see what our participants in the session make of ‘co-production’. I am not convinced of it as a concept myself – should be interesting to explore though.

  2. runner500 says:

    What a fascinating topic for research! I am a long term running commuter, a couple of times a week, and it has been interesting to see the growth in numbers on my regular parkland route as well as the almost exponential growth in cycling too.

    1. simoniancook says:

      Thank you so much Bradley, most kind indeed. That AAG paper has just been accepted for publication so should be online at the end of the month of so. Exciting stuff!

  3. Stuart says:

    Hate to be pedantic, but interesting as ‘geographical angels’ sound, I’m guessing it’s a typo?? Great blog though, thanks.

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