Portrait photo of Dr. Nina Goldman, a white Caucasian female researcher. (c) 2018. Beatrix Goldman

Personal profile


I am a human geographer with a strong affinity for social science research methods and approaches. I have always been fascinated by cities as places full of opportunities and challenges. How can it be that cities are a place for both good and bad health? Which place-based determinants drive loneliness and social isolation? What makes neighbourhoods relisient especially in times of crises?

I enjoy thinking of and conducting empirical social research, such as questionnaire design, organising and conducting large-volume surveys and quantitative as well as qualitative data analysis. For my dissertation titled "The Taming of the Flu", I linked health and place-based data using geo-referenced data from the university hospital, a household survey (30,000 questionnaires) that I helped lead, and census data from the local statistics office. During my first PostDoc at the Technical University of Munich, I worked with qualitative interview data to explore the practical benefits and challenges of recruiting study participants with social media in the context of clinical and non-clinical medical studies.

Research interests

Since March 2023 I've been based in Manchester, where I've started to work on loneliness and social isolation. These share some geographical characteristics, such as the proximity and availability of social contacts and the ability to easily access and contribute to the local community. So far, research that looks beyond individual-level determinants to identify what predicts loneliness and social isolation has only just begun to take hold. In line with this, I am incorporating a geographical approach into my current research project. So far, I have conducted a scoping review of policies to address loneliness and social isolation in two UN European country groups (52 countries) [submitted]. This policy analysis sought to highlight the similarities and differences between different national approaches that address loneliness, and to provide actionable recommendations for consideration of policy makers wishing to develop, expand or review existing loneliness policies.


You can find some of my initial thoughts on urban loneliness here.


My collaborations

My collaborative research with Prof. Pam Qualter at the Manchester Institute of Education has yielded a consulting engagement with a prominent US-based multinational corporation for a global loneliness survey and to collaboration with the World Health Organization.

If you're interested in including a focus on loneliness and social isolation in your research, please get in touch. I'd be happy to exchange some ideas over a coffee/tea (in person or online): nina.goldman@manchester.ac.uk

Expertise related to UN Sustainable Development Goals

In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This person’s work contributes towards the following SDG(s):

  • SDG 3 - Good Health and Well-being
  • SDG 11 - Sustainable Cities and Communities

Education/Academic qualification

Doctor of Philosophy, The Taming of the Flu – Challenges and opportunities in immunisation on a city level, University of Basel

1 Aug 201830 Jun 2021

Award Date: 28 Jun 2021

External positions

Honorary Lecturer, Imperial College London

1 Apr 202328 Feb 2025

Areas of expertise

  • GF Human ecology. Anthropogeography
  • Human Geography
  • Urban Environments
  • HM Sociology
  • Inequalities
  • H Social Sciences (General)
  • Loneliness


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Collaborations and top research areas from the last five years

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