WISERD Co-Director
University of South Wales

Gary’s current research projects include; GIS-based analysis in accessibility modelling; applications of GIS in medical geography; use of GIS and visualisation techniques in emergency planning; applying GIS techniques in collaborative environments and in particular the use of GIS in public participation arenas as part of decision support system frameworks; investigating the use of Public Participation GIS (PPGIS) in combination with multi-criteria decision analysis in the siting of facilities such as wind farms and landfill sites; investigating patterns of environmental (in) justice in the UK; researching the use of GIS in social science applications in Wales and associated capacity building.

Inequalities, civic loss and well-being
Inequalities, civic loss and well-being uses innovative methods, including app-based surveys of spatial mobility and data linkages, to compare place-based and individual measures of accessibility, and explore how changing patterns of civic loss and gain relate to measures of
Research Team:
Gary Higgs (University of South Wales), Mitch Langford (University of South Wales), Andrew Price (University of South Wales)
Implications of Spatial & Temporal Variation in Service Provision for Inequalities in Social Outcomes
Overview The study carried out analysis of existing secondary sources of quantitative data in order to investigate levels of social capital within communities in relation to changing levels of provision of key public services. The study built on research conducted in Phase 1
Research Team:
Gary Higgs (University of South Wales), Mitch Langford (University of South Wales), Scott Orford (Cardiff University), Nicholas Page (Cardiff University)
Connected Communities: ICT Use and Connectivity of Minority Communities in Wales
Researchers from the Wales Institute of Social & Economic Research, Data & Methods, Swansea University, Cardiff University, and the University of Glamorgan will conduct a systematic research review in order to gain an understanding of the impact of Information and
Research Team:
Panayiota Tsatsou, Gary Higgs (University of South Wales), Ian Stafford (Cardiff University), Robert Berry, Richard Fry (Swansea University)
Journal Articles
Understanding Spatial Variations in Accessibility to Banks Using Variable Floating Catchment Area Techniques
Applied Spatial Analysis and Policy: Contemporary Applications for Spatially Integrated Social Science 14(3) pp 449-472 In response to changing consumer habits driven by the advance of online services and mobile apps, substantial reductions in the provision of bank branches...
Journal Articles
Exploring the relationship between local volunteering opportunities and the propensity to volunteer using a nationally representative survey of adults in Wales
This study explored the respective importance of compositional (individual) and contextual (neighbourhood) factors associated with the propensity to engage in formal volunteering among a nationally representative sample of adults in Wales, UK. To date, while certain...
Journal Articles
Computing geographical access to services: The design of a client–server solution that incorporates multiple transport modes
Transactions in GIS, 25(4) pp 1849-1867 This study describes the design and implementation of a web‐based infrastructure built on open‐source components to enable the computation of accessibility scores. It can be adapted to any form of service provision that is represented...
Journal Articles
Exploring spatiotemporal variations in public library provision following a prolonged period of economic austerity: A GIS approach
Area 52(2) pp 342-353 This paper demonstrates the applicability of GIS tools for investigating the implications of changes in public service provision following a prolonged period of economic austerity in the UK. Using the example of geographical accessibility to public...
Journal Articles
Using Geographic Information Systems to investigate variations in accessibility to ‘extended hours’ primary healthcare provision
Abstract There are ongoing policy concerns surrounding the difficulty in obtaining timely appointments to primary healthcare services and the potential impact on, for example, attendance at accident and emergency services and potential health outcomes. Using the case study...
Journal Articles
Investigating spatial variations in access to childcare provision using network‐based Geographic Information System models
A “flagship” policy outlined in the current Welsh Government's 2016 Programme for Government aims to provide 30 hours of free early education and childcare per week to the working parents of three‐ and four‐year‐olds. However, in common with many other countries, there is...
Journal Articles
An exploratory analysis of spatial variations in organ donation registration rates in Wales prior to the implementation of the Human Transplantation (Wales) Act 2013
Spatial variations in rates of registered organ donors have not been studied in the UK at detailed spatial scales despite some evidence of national and regional differences. By drawing on the findings from the existing literature, this study examines associations between...
Journal Articles
Assessing the Impacts of Changing Public Service Provision on Geographical Accessibility: an examination of public library provision in Pembrokeshire, South Wales
Public libraries make an important contribution to the wellbeing of local people often acting as community hubs by reducing the isolation felt by vulnerable members of society through promoting social interaction and supporting the wider needs of local communities. However...
Journal Articles
Investigating geospatial data usability from a health geography perspective using sensitivity analysis: The example of potential accessibility to primary healthcare
Network distance and travel times are two popular methods of measuring potential geographic accessibility and networks are also used in gravity model-based approaches such as floating catchment area (FCA) techniques. Although some research has been conducted to assess the...
Journal Articles
Gauging levels of public acceptance to the use of visualisation tools in promoting public participation; a case study of wind farm planning in South Wales, UK
Journal of Environmental Planning and Management 55(2) pp 229-551 There is an increasing interest in the use of IT-based tools to encourage public participation in environmental decision making. Typically, this has involved the development of (predominantly prototype)...
Journal Articles
Accessibility and public service provision: Evaluating the impacts of the Post Office Network Change Programme in the UK
The importance of public service provision and accessibility in shaping government policies aimed at enhancing social inclusion and ensuring social justice in the UK is well founded. The capabilities of GIS for generating information to address such concerns have facilitated...
Journal Articles
An audit of smoking behaviours among patients attending two general dental practices in South Wales: An awareness raising exercise for the dental team and patients
Primary Dental Care 17(2) pp 79-82 Aims This audit aimed to quantify the number of smokers attending two general dental practices. It also aimed to establish the demographic characteristics of these smokers in terms of age, gender and deprivation status, and to raise the...
Journal Articles
The Role of GIS for Health Utilization Studies: Literature Review
Health Services and Outcome Research Methodology 9(2) pp 84-99 There have been a plethora of studies investigating access issues in relation to health services but until recently a relative lack of research on geographical factors that may be influencing utilisation patterns...
Localities | June 2009
Conference Changing Wales: WISERD at 10
17th October 2018 |
The Wales Institute of Social and Economic Research, Data and Methods (WISERD) will be celebrating ten years of research that has helped address some of the key social challenges facing Wales on Wednesday 17th October. This invitation only event will...