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Exploring narratives of place and culture

Architecture, interiors, and urbanism research

Architecture and urban design are intricately connected to significant local and global issues and the everyday experiences of people. The results of these fields have a direct influence on a wide range of interrelated systems, including the environment, culture, economy, politics, and aesthetics. Whether we are addressing challenges like climate change, community engagement, wealth distribution, or health and well-being, it's essential to recognize the substantial role that histories and theories can play in addressing urban and architectural transformations.

Our research in Architecture and Urban Histories and Theories is founded on an awareness of a variety of approaches and epistemologies. We actively engage with diverse narratives surrounding urban, architectural, and interior spaces, weaving together a polyphony of voices, conversations, and debates.

Our goal is to construct fresh historiographical and theoretical discourses in architecture, interiors, landscape, and urbanism by immersing ourselves in the values of historical, cultural, and political contexts. Our research transcends the boundaries between architecture and other disciplines such as art, cinema, design, histories, heritage, and cultural and social theories.

In the realm of academic research, we strive to blur the lines between academia and practical application in architecture. We reflect on research in our teaching, involving students in our Graduate and Postgraduate Programs, including PhD research projects.

Our research topics  

We develop both conventional and practice-based research around the following themes: 

  • Historiography and Documentation of Architecture and Urban Spaces

  • Heritage, Memory and Cultural Resonance

  • Cinematic, literary, and artistic readings of the built environment

  • Historical Social and Cultural Landscapes

  • Art and Interior Space

  • Architecture Criticism

  • Urban Narratives 

  • Embodied Approach within Architecture and Urban Design

  • Urban Activism
     

Recent projects

  • Narratives of space

    This research area investigates the concept of place as a social and cultural construct composed of multiple mutable narratives through which we make sense of the world. Research activities aim to unpick this rich tapestry to identify methods for understanding the complexities of place and its social and cultural readings. This research leads us to propose strategies for place-making and design interventions that draw on narrative in order to create distinct identities that promote attachment and connectivity to place.

    Topics include:

    • Historiography and Documentary
    • Heritage, Memory and Cultural Resonance
    • Cinematic, literary, and artistic readings of the built environment
  • Cultural contexts

    This research area examines past and present cultural contexts in which historical and contemporary architectural and design production operates. It investigates the role played by shared ideas, social networks, and cultural practices in developing our built environments and how these shape individual and collective experiences of place. Particular interests of this group include architectural history and art history, artistic practice, textual analysis of film, and travel writing.

    Topics include:

    • Historical Social and Cultural Landscapes
    • Art and Interior Space
    • Cinematic Space and Social Stereotyping
  • Screening House: film and material representations of the Cold War’s anxieties

    Aedo Jury, Sebastian. / Screening House: film and material representations of the Cold War’s anxieties. In: Architectural Research Quarterly . 2023 ; Vol. 26, No. 3. pp. 236-246


    Interested in a PhD in architecture, interiors and urbanism?

    Browse our postgraduate research degrees – including PhDs and MPhils – at our Architecture, interiors and urbanism postgraduate research degrees page.

    Architecture courses