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Cities Programme head quits post

Ricky Burdett is set to step down from the directorship of the London School of Economics' (LSE) successful Cities Programme.

However, the academic and founding director of the Architecture Foundation has moved to scotch widespread rumours that he is to quit the programme to take up a full-time role at Ken Livingstone's architecture and urbanism unit.

The LSE has launched a search for a replacement for Burdett, who insists he will continue working for the school in a part-time teaching capacity. 'There is a series of lectures and debates that I want to continue doing out of the LSE and there is no question that I will not carry on here in some way, ' he told the AJ. 'I will continue to work for the mayor in my current two-day-a-week capacity until my contract is up in March of next year. What will happen after that is not yet clear.' Rumours abound that Burdett is lining himself up to replace Richard Rogers when he retires as the mayor's chief adviser on architecture. Rogers signed up for another one-year term in his position earlier this year.

Burdett was founding director of the Cities Programme when it was established by the LSE in 1996. He was also instrumental in the birth of the Architecture Foundation.

Since its inception the programme, with Burdett as its public face, has attempted to transform the perception of urban design by encouraging interdisciplinary research, lectures and debate.

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