Patrick Geddes

Sir Patrick Geddes FRSE (2 October 1854 – 17 April 1932) was a British biologist,[2] sociologist, Comtean positivist, geographer, philanthropist and pioneering town planner. He is known for his innovative thinking in the fields of urban planning and sociology.


Patrick Geddes

Born2 October 1854
Died17 April 1932(1932-04-17) (aged 77)
Alma materRoyal School of Mines
Known forUrban planning and the term conurbation
SpouseAnna Geddes
ChildrenNorah Geddes and two brothers
Scientific career
FieldsSociology, urban planning, biology
InstitutionsLecturer in Zoology, University of Edinburgh (1880–1888)
Professor of Botany, University College, Dundee (1888–1919)
Professor of Civics & Sociology, Bombay University, India (1920–1923)
PatronsJohn Sinclair, 1st Baron Pentland
InfluencesThomas Henry Huxley, Auguste Comte, Herbert Spencer, Frederic Le Play
InfluencedLewis Mumford, Raymond Unwin, Frank Mears (his son-in-law), Radhakamal Mukerjee, Cebrià de Montoliu
Fellow of the Royal Society of Edinburgh (1880)
Co-founder of the University of Bombay[1]
Co-founder of the Sociological Society[1]
Founder of the Edinburgh Social Union[1]
Founder of the Franco-Scottish Society[1]
Planned the Hebrew University at Jerusalem[1]
Founder of the Collège des Écossais in Montpellier (1924)
Milne's Court (1690), Edinburgh. Under the influence of the pioneering conservationist, Patrick Geddes, these buildings were renovated in 1914, becoming a university hall of residence.
Masterplan for Tel Aviv, 1925

Following the philosophies of Auguste Comte and Frederic LePlay, he introduced the concept of "region" to architecture and planning and coined the term "conurbation".[3][4][5][6] Later, he elaborated "neotechnics" as the way of remaking a world apart from over-commercialization and money dominance.[7]

An energetic Francophile,[8] Geddes was the founder in 1924 of the Collège des Écossais (Scots College), an international teaching establishment in Montpellier, France, and in the 1920s he bought the Château d'Assas to set up a centre for urban studies.

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