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Dr Franziska Sohns

Associate Professor
Faculty of Business and Law
Economics, Finance and Law
Areas of Expertise:
Economics , Entrepreneurship and technology startups , Research methodology , Knowledge transfer
Research Supervision:

As one of the co-founders of ARU’s Behavioural Insights Laboratory (BIL), 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 are influenced by regional characteristics, and how they shape regional economic development.

[email protected]

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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 the Environment 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 M.Sc. in Geography in 2012.

Spoken Languages
  • English (C2)
  • German (native)
  • French (A2)
Research interests
  • Economic geography
  • Financial geography
  • Regional development
  • Entrepreneurial economics
  • 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, Contemporary Issues in International Business (Level 7)
  • Contemporary Issues in International Management
  • PhD Supervisor
  • M.Sc. 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
  • Fellow of the Regional Studies Association (RSA)
  • Elected Member of Global Network on Financial Geography (FinGeo) Committee
  • Representative of the FinGeo Network on the RSA Journal Board
  • Member of Chartered Management Institute
Research grants, consultancy, knowledge exchange
  • Knowledge Exchange Lead of the School of Economics, Finance and Law
  • Co-Founder of ARU’s Behavioural Insights Laboratory (BIL) - £5,000 through ARU’s Participatory Research Fund Project
  • 1st Supervisor of a Vice Chancellor PhD Scholarship – The Effect of FinTech on Financial Inclusion and Citizen Equality in East Anglia
  • Engaged with the German Embassy, the German-British Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Innovate Finance, the London Brewers Alliance, and the Cambridge Arts Network
Selected recent publications

Cabras, I., Shakina, E., Waehning, N., Sohns, F. and Bosworth, G. (2023) 'Brewing at the time of COVID: The impact of the pandemic crisis on UK craft breweries and its implications for the sector and local economies', Regional Studies Available at: https://doi.org/10.1080/00343404.2023.2170343

Waehning, N., Bosworth, G., Cabras, I., Shakina, E. and Sohns, F. (2023) 'Resilient SMEs and Entrepreneurs: Evidence from the UK Craft Brewing Sector', International Journal of Entrepreneurial Behavior & Research. Available at: https://doi.org/10.1108/IJEBR-06-2021-0496

Sohns, F. and Wójcik, D. (2023) 'Do they do as they say?: Analysing the Impact of Brexit on Relocation Intentions in the UK’s FinTech Industry', ZFW – Advances in Economic Geography. Available at: https://doi.org/10.1515/zfw-2021-0049

Recent presentations and conferences

Sohns, F. (2023). The Impact of FinTech on Financial Inclusion and Citizen Equality in East Anglia. RSA Annual Conference, Ljubljana, Slovenia.

Sohns, F. (2023). Resilient SMEs and Entrepreneurs: Evidence from the UK Craft Brewing Sector. LBA Annual Meeting, London, UK.

Sohns, F. (2022). The 3Cs: Corruption, Culture, and COVID-19. 6th Global Conference on Economic Geography, Dublin, Ireland.

Media experience
  • Discussing the Effect of Covid-19 on Europeans in London, Radio Appearance, Germany, 2020
  • Interviewed by Bloomberg on the Effect of Brexit on the UK’s FinTech Industry, UK, 2023