Dr Franziska Sohns

Associate Professor in Economic Geography

Faculty:Faculty of Business and Law

School:Economics, Finance and Law

Location: Cambridge

Areas of Expertise: Economics , Entrepreneurship and technology startups , Research methodology , Knowledge transfer

Research Supervision:Yes

Franziska's main research interests focus on micro-economic decision-making processes under uncertainty. As an economic geographer, she is particularly interested in how the behaviours of economic actors shape regional economic development and how the behaviours of economic actors are influenced by regional characteristics.


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Franziska joined ARU in September 2022. From 2018-2022 she was employed as a lecturer/senior lecturer in International Business at the University of Greenwich. In 2018, she was appointed as an Honorary Research Associate at the School of Geography and Environmental at the University of Oxford. From 2014-2017, she was employed as a research and teaching fellow at the University of Cologne where she obtained her PhD in Human Geography in 2017. From 2012 to 2014, Franziska worked as a policy consultant at the University of Hanover where she obtained her Diploma in Geography in 2012.

Research interests

  • Economic geography
  • Regional development
  • Entrepreneurship
  • Development economics
  • Political and institutional change
  • Knowledge exchange

Areas of research supervision

  • Entrepreneurial ecosystems/regional innovation systems
  • Self-employment in developing countries
  • Foreign direct investment
  • Micro-economic behaviour under risk and uncertainty
  • Contemporary issues in the Fintech industry
  • Quantitative methods (e.g. multi-level modelling, panel regression)


  • Academic tutor in 'Contemporary Issues in International Business' Level 7
  • PhD Supervisor


  • Diploma in Geography, University of Hanover, Germany
  • PhD in Human Geography, University of Cologne, Germany
  • Postgraduate Certificate in Higher Education, University of Greenwich, UK

Memberships, editorial boards

  • Member of the Regional Studies Association
  • Member of Chartered Management Institute
  • Member of Global Network on Financial Geography

Research grants, consultancy, knowledge exchange

  • Knowledge exchange lead of the School of Economics, Finance and Law at ARU
  • Contract researcher at Deltapoll
  • Engaged with the German Embassy, the German-British Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Innovative Finance, and the London Brewers Alliance

Selected recent publications

Verfürth, P., Neise, T., Franz, M., & Sohns, F. (2022) The uneven Effects of Covid-19 on the German Restaurant and Bar Industry. Erdkunde, 76(2): 127-140.

Bernzen, A., Mangnus, E. & Sohns, F. (2022) Diversify, produce or buy? An analysis of factors contributing to household dietary diversity among shrimp and non-shrimp farmers in coastal Bangladesh. Food Security. https://doi.org/10.1007/s12571-021-01245-w.

Neise, T., Sohns, F., Breul, M., & Revilla Diez, J. (2022) The effect of natural disasters on FDI attraction: A sector-based analysis over time and space. Natural Hazards, 110: 999-1023.

Sohns, F., & Wojcik, D. (2020) The impact of Brexit on London’s entrepreneurial ecosystem: The case of the FinTech industry. Environment and Planning A, 52(8):1539–1559.

Cabrs, I., Sohns, F., Canduela, J., & Toms, S. (2020) Public houses and house prices in Great Britain: A panel analysis. European Planning Studies, 29(4): 1-18.

Recent presentations and conferences

  • ‘The 3Cs: Corruption, Culture, and COVID-19’, 6th Global Conference on Economic Geography, Dublin, 2022
  • ‘Analysing the Impact of Brexit on Relocation Decisions: A Factorial Survey Analysis of UK’s FinTech Industry’, Online Conference, Regional Studies Association, 2021
  • ‘The Effect of Brexit on London’s entrepreneurial Ecosystem: The Case of the FinTech Industry’, Online Lecture, University of Virginia, 2020

Media experience

  • Discussing the effect of Covid-19, Radio Appearance, Germany, 2020