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Per Assmo

Per Assmo


IPPE programme Manager I312


Staff member at Division of Urban Planning and Development. Conducts research in social sciences, workintegrated learning, social and economic geography.


During the 90’s, I conducted field research and did development work as an SIDA expert in East Africa. After returning to Sweden I received my PhD in Human and Economic Geography at Göteborg University in 1999 with a thesis entitled; Livelihood Strategies and Land Degradation - Perceptions among Small-Scale Farmers in Ng'iresi Village, Tanzania. My networks and research interest in Africa, and particularly South Africa, has continued and expanded over the years. Already in year 2000, I started a collaboration with the Geography Department at Rhodes University. I am since 2009 appointed as Visiting professor to Rhodes University. In more recent years I have also initiated a close educational and research collaboration with the Department for Political Studies at University of Western Cape (UWC), and I am since 2017 appointed as Extraordinary Associate Professor to University of Western Cape.

Apart from my collaboration with South African universities, I have also been attached part-time as researcher and co-ordinator at the Department for Management and Engineering at Linköping University during the period 2007-2015. However, I have, since my employment started in 2001, always kept my base and main educational and research activities at University West. In 2009 I was appointed Associate Professor, and in 2018 I became professor in human and Economic Geography at University West.  

I have a profound engagement and research interest focusing on the African continent, as well as in Sweden. I started in the 90’s focusing on rural sustainable development in Africa, which later also became a field of interest in a Swedish context. My research interests have over the years come to include also other areas such as; Sustainable Development, Creative Industries, Migration and Integration, Internationalisation of Higher Education, and Work Integrated Learning. In many of these research areas I have explored the concept of time-spatial approaches, largely developing the concept of Time-Geography initially founded by Torsten Hägerstrand.


I have more than 20 years of national and international teaching experience at undergraduate as well as post-graduate level, giving lectures and courses in; Sweden, South Africa, Switzerland, UK, Ireland, Australia, USA, Norway, Denmark, Tanzania, Uganda and Kenya. Fields of teaching includes primarily the subjects of Human & Economic Geography, Political Science, and Social Science with topics such as; Regional Geography (Africa), Demography & Migration, Global Production & Trade, International Political Economy, Rural Development, Local Economic Development (LED), Tourism Geography, Development in Theory & Practice, Political Ecology, Theory & Methodology, Time Geography, European Politics, and Work Integrated Learning (WIL)

I have over the years also gained extensive experience as Supervisor to Honours/Master/PhD projects at Institutions in Sweden (University West, Linköping University, Göteborg University), and South Africa (Rhodes University, University of the Western Cape - UWC). I have also been examiner committee member for PhD Degrees at various universities.

I have developed and implemented a number of new university programmes, in Sweden and South Africa. I currently hold positions as;

  • Programme Director for the International Programme for Politics & Economics (IPPE), University West
  • Programme Director for the Master Programme in International Politics, University West
  • Extraordinary Associate Professor, Department of Political Studies, UWC,
  • Visiting Professor, Geography Department, Rhodes University, South Africa
  • Member of the Research Council for Work Integrated Learning (LINA) at University West
  • Member of the Research Editorial Committee – Uddevalla Symposium Rhodes University
  • University West co-ordinator for SANORD (Southern Africa Nordic Centre)
  • Member of the steering committee for SASUF (South Africa Sweden Research Forum)
  • External Expert/Evaluator - Swedish Council for Higher Education


Time-geography, Rural Development, Sustainable Development, Internationalisation, Development Theory, Integration, Migration, Political-Economy, Work Integrated Learning.


Assmo, P. (2005) Creative Clusters - Ideas and Realities for Cluster Growth. The Example of Film i Väst in the Region of Västra Götaland, Sweden. In Karlsson, Johansson & Stough:  Industrial Clusters and Inter-Firm Networks. New Horizons in Regional Science. Edward Elgar Publishing, Cheltenham

Assmo, P. & Wihlborg, E. (2007) Beyond the Economic Meanings of Development - A Discussion of Political-Geographical Constructions of Societal Development. In University West Research Report 2007:04. Institutions for Knowledge Generation & Knowledge Flows – Building Innovative Capabilities for Regions. Grafikerna Livrena AB. Kungälv, Sweden

Fox, R. & Assmo, P. and H. Kjellgren (2008) Role Playing African Development: an international comparison. The Journal of Independent Teaching and Learning. Volume 3. 2008.

Assmo, P. (2010) Creative Industries and Regional Economic Development – The Example of Public Supported Regional Film Centres in Sweden. In Karlsson, Johansson & Stough: Entrepreneurship and Regional Development. Local Processes and Global Patterns. New Horizons in Regional Science. Edward Elgar Publishing, Cheltenham, UK.

Assmo, P. & Wihlborg, E. (2010) Home: The Arena for Sustainable Development – A conceptual discussion.The International Journal of Environmental, Cultural, Economic and Social Sustainability, Volume 6, Issue 1, pp.319-332. Common Ground Publishing.

Assmo, P. & Wihlborg, E. (2011) Ydre 2.0 – An alternative Approach towards Post-Monetarism. In: University West Research Report 2011:01. (Ed I. Bernhard) Innovation and Multidimensional Entrepreneurship – Economic, Social and Academic Aspects. Litorapid Media. Göteborg, Sweden. 

Assmo, P. & Wihlborg, E. (2011) A time Spatial approach towards Integrated Sustainable Development. In: University West Research Report 2011:05. (Ed I. Bernhard) Entrepreneurial Knowledge, Technology and Transformations of Regions. Ale Tryckteam AB, Bohus, Sweden.

Assmo, P. & Wihlborg, E. (2012) An Alternative View of Integrated Sustainable Development Through a Time-Spatial Lens. In: OIDA International Journal of Sustainable Development, Vol. 03, No. 12, pp. 87-96, 2012.

Assmo, P. & Wihlborg, E. (2012) Public Services Choices When There Are No Alternatives? – A Paradox of New Public Management in Rural Areas. Journal of Rural and Community Development. Vol 7, no 2, p. 1-17.

Assmo, P. & Wihlborg, E. (2012) Local alternative development through a time-spatial lens: a case study of Ydre inspired by Hägerstrand. In: Entrepreneurship, Social Capital and Governance. - Directions for the Sustainable Development and Competitiveness of Regions. Johansson, B. Karlsson, C. & Stough, R. R. (eds.), London: Edward Elgar Publications.

Assmo, P. & Wihlborg, E. (2014) En annan kommunal ekonomi. Om andra sätt att värdera lokala resurser och aktiviteter. Bilder från Ydre kommun. LIU Tryck. Linköping, Sweden.

Assmo, P. & Wihlborg, E. (2014)Home: An Alternative Time-Spatial Concept for Sustainable Development. In; Transitions to Sustainability: Theoretical Debates for a Changing Planet. D. Humphreys & S. Stober (eds.) London: Common Grounds publishing.

Assmo, P. & Fox, R. (2015) International collaboration for pedagogical innovation: Understanding multi-racial interaction through a time-geographic appraisal. (pp 207-227). In; Knowledge for a sustainable World – A southern African-Nordic contribution. Ed Halvorsen T, Ibsen H, & M’kumbuzi R. SANORD & African Minds, Cape Town.

Assmo, P. (2015)A Time-geographic Appraisal for Local Sustainable Development.The International Journal of Environmental, Cultural, Economic and Social Sustainability. Annual Review, Volume 10, 2014. pp. 15-26. Common Ground Publishing.

Assmo, P. & Wihlborg, E. (2016) Political Entrepreneurship and Sustainable Growth in Rural Areas. In; Political Entrepreneurship - Regional Growth and Entrepreneurial Diversity in Sweden. Eds., Karlsson, Silander & Silander. Cheltenham UK: Edward Elgar Publications.

Assmo, P., T. Winman & M. Westerlind (2018) Slutrapport: Hälsofrämjande integration och jämlik folkhälsa i Uddevalla - Ett forsknings- och utvecklingsprojekt i samarbete med Högskolan Väst och Uddevalla kommun. Högskolan Väst

Assmo, P. & Winman, T. (Forthcoming) Work Integrated Learning through an R&D ProjectA Case Study of Student´s participation in a Health Promoting Integration Project at University West.

Assmo, P. (Forthcoming)A Time-Spatial Approach to Analyse Migrants’ Micro-Migration and Settlement Patterns. 


Read more about my research on our Swedish website.


Research projects