Royal Geographical Society Dissertation Prize Winner

Sam McConnochie, who graduated from Geography and Environment at Loughborough University in 2019, has won the Royal Geographical Society (with IBG) Planning and Environment Research Group Undergraduate Dissertation Prize.

The first prize award is £100 and this is a significant national achievement.

Sam’s dissertation was entitled “Evaluating the vulnerability ‘hotspots’ for road network flooding: a preliminary investigation at a district level in England” and his dissertation advisor was Prof. Dapeng Yu.

The PERG review panel noted specifically that “This is an outstandingly good piece of writing, in which the research is placed in the context of flood risk management, resilience and the wider transport planning sector. The introduction and research review are clearly structured, well-positioned and demonstrate an excellent awareness of debates.  There is very little that could be improved here”.

Sam graduated with a first-class degree from Loughborough University and now works for Suss Housing as an Environmental Assessor.  Speaking about his current role, he says “We provide a yearly environmental accreditation called SHIFT to social housing landlords. We currently have 30 landlords utilising SHIFT ranging from 5000 homes managed to 60,000! My daily routine will either be analysing client data, writing their environmental reports or travelling around the country to have progress review meetings with their sustainability teams. I am also project managing the creation of an online portal for landlords to store their data and analysis their performance against science-based targets. It is really varied, and I am learning a lot!”.‌

Professor Rachel Thomson, Pro Vice Chancellor for Teaching at Loughborough University, commented on Sam’s outstanding achievement:

“This is excellent news and a fantastic testament to all of the support that the staff in Geography provide for our students. It’s also great to see the students starting out on their career journey and how they are building on their degree, which has clearly set them up for their futures.”

Congratulations to Sam on his fantastic dissertation and on his new career!