Professor Felix Driver

Personal profile

Felix Driver is Professor of Human Geography at Royal Holloway, University of London. His research addresses the history of geography, empire and visual cultures of exploration and travel. In recent years he has worked on the sketchbooks, log-books and albums of nineteenth-century maritime observers; the history of the Geographical Magazine (1935-65); and the 'lost history' of geographical film. He recently curated an exhibition at the Royal Geographical Society on Hidden histories of exploration

Research interests

Geography, empire and cultures of exploration. Much of my research considers the relationships between geographical knowledge, visual culture, exploration and empire, especially in the British context. This research has been funded by the Leverhulme Trust, British Academy and AHRC.

Collecting and collections. I have supervised numerous collaborative research and PhD projects on aspects of collecting and collections, including those of the Science Museum, the RGS-IBG, the National Maritime Museum, the Royal Botanic Gardens Kew and the British Library.

Geography and the visual arts. I have been involved in collaborations with artists including Helen Scalway and Kathy Prendergast.  The AHRB Visualising Geography project resulted in an exhibition and publication, Landing. I was co-PI of the AHRC Fashioning Diaspora Space project, in collaboration with the V&A Museum.

Imperial cities. This research project, funded by the Leverhulme Trust, examined the significance of imperialism for the design and use of space in London and Rome. A book on Imperial Cities, co-edited with David Gilbert, was published by Manchester University Press.

Moral geographies, city & society. My doctoral research considered discourses of social policy and moral regulation in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. My book Power and Pauperism was reissued by Cambridge University Press in paperback in 2004.


Felix Driver teaches in each year of the undergraduate Geography curriculum, including a new final-year option on Geography, Museums and Collections (GG3065). He also teaches core modules in the MA programme in Cultural Geography (Research). He has other teaching experience in historical geography, cultural geography, modern British history, Victorian Studies and imperial history.  

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