Nina Goldman, PhD

Human geographer and social science enthusiast.

I am a human geographer in a love affair with the social sciences. My interests are wide-ranging and not confined to disciplinary boundaries, so I’ll enjoy anything that will tweak my brain. In my research, I am concerned with the question of how an urban environment can affect the wellbeing of its inhabitants. My new passion project is called: A Geography of Loneliness. Reach out via the contact form, if you’re interested in collaborating.

I grew up in a bilingual household (English/German) which resulted in my becoming an expert in cultural misunderstandings with an odd love for peas.

When I’m not working on my research, I enjoy introducing young people to sailing, by taking them on week-long trips around the Mediterranean or Baltic Sea. I discovered sailing back in 2011. After a 4 month trip around Europe in 2014 I became part of the active skipper group who are also responsible for the maintenance of two sailing catamarans.

My Projects

What keeps me occupied


  • A Geography of loneliness (since 01/2022). A collaboration project with two wonderful experts from the University of Manchester and Imperial College London. Building on existing work at ICL and expanding it to two European cities (Basel and Manchester) and adding a geographic and social perspective. Recording of the latest public lecture and slide deck.


  • Social media recruitment for research studies (09/2021-06/2022). Postdoctoral research unravelling the benefits and challenges of using social media for research study recruitment based on insights from an interview study with multidisciplinary experts. This was part of an EU Horizon 2020 funded project called “TherVacB – A Therapeutic Vaccine to Cure Hepatitis B”.
  • The Taming of the Flu (08/2018-06/2021). Doctoral research within a large interdisciplinary project entitled “System analysis of seasonal influenza: virus transmission and evolution in the City of Basel”, which was funded by the Swiss National Science Foundation (SNSF) and involved several research groups.
  • Experimental erosion research (02/2017-02/18). Work with biochar-enriched substrates to see how they behave under different rainfall conditions and to test if the method of photogrammetry is able to quantify erosion rates.


Contact me if you are interested but have no access to the papers

Goldman N (2021): The taming of the flu. Spatial patterns of influenza-like illness and the challenges and opportunities in immunisation on a city level. Doctoral Thesis, University of Basel, Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences. here

Egli A, Goldman N, Müller N, et al. (2021): High-resolution influenza mapping of a city reveals socioeconomic determinants of transmission within and between urban quarters. Submitted. Preprint here

Müller NF, Wüthrich D, Goldman N, et al. (2020): Characterising the epidemic spread of Influenza A/H3N2 within a city through phylogenetics. PLOS Pathogens 16(11), e1008984. here

Egli A, Saalfrank C, Goldman N, et al. (2019): Identification of influenza urban transmission patterns by geographical, epidemiological and whole genome sequencing data: Study protocol. BMJ open 9(8), 1-10. here

Goldman N, Saalfrank C, Schneider-Sliwa R (2019): Grippeerkrankungen und gesundheitsbezogenes Verhalten in Stadt-quartieren. Ausgewählte Resultate einer Haushaltsbefragung. In: Schneider-Sliwa R (ed.): Stadt, Region, Landschaft. Forschungsbeiträge der Basler Stadt- und Regionalforschung. Basel: Schwabe, 168-173. here

Fister W, Goldman N, Mayer M, Suter M, Kuhn NJ (2018): Testing of photogrammetry for differentiation of soil organic carbon and biochar in sandy substrates. Geographica Helvetica 74, 81-91. here


Since 2017 I have taken students on excursions and developed my own courses. I highly enjoy interacting with students, which has been insightful and inspiring for my own research.

BA classes

  • Exercise: Applied Empirical Social Research, University of Basel, 2022
  • Introduction to Empirical Social Research and Statistics, 2 Statistics lectures, University of Basel, 2020/22
  • Exercise for the main lecture: System Earth, University of Basel, 2019/20/21/22
  • Jura field course, 2 days University of Basel, 2018/19
  • Human geographic field course, block course, University of Basel, 2017/18/19

MA classes


  • Urban Health, 1 day, 2022
  • Ecology in agriculture and forest management, 1 day, 2021
  • Energy and sustainability in Basel, 1 day, 2020/21
  • Poverty in Basel, 1 day, 2017/18/19/20/21
  • Spatial transformations and space (re)uses in Zurich, 1 day, 2019/20/21
  • Urban development and spatial structures in Berlin, 3 days, 2018/19
  • City and port development in Basel, 1 day, 2019 
  • Trinational human geography excursion (Switzerland, Germany, France) for the Sun Yat-sen University, China, 14 days, 2018



Ever wondered what research actually looks like? Or what we do during field excursions?