UCL Anthropology


Organic and Built Landscapes



Organic and Built Landscapes weaves together the streets of London suburbs, council flats, Bronze Age stones and the weeds of allotments. Several of our research projects investigate sustainability of urban lives, success and failure in development of new urban communities and the vital co-presence of contemporary architecture and archeology of Neolithic monuments, the phenomenology of city outdoors and the countryside, and the feeling and meaning of asphalt, soil and plants for British parcours, townies, and gardeners. The cluster is defined by the Adaptable Suburbs project that runs jointly with the Bartlett School of Architecture and Geomatic Engineering. Adaptable Suburbs project examines the micro environments and historical transformations of the suburban high street to determine what makes London suburbs significant and enduring. Suburbs are defined as spaces of habitation where economies of movement such as walking intersect with memory, discourse, and materialities. The focus is on the ethnographic study of streetscrapes and consumer environments as they link to the wider experience of the suburb and on the notions of sustainability that is afforded by redesigning London houses and creating green roofs and solar panels to reduce carbon emissions.


Victor Buchli
Chris Tilley
Jane Dickson (PhD student)
David Jeevendrampillai (PhD student)
Saffron Woodcraft (PhD student)

Selected Publications:

Tilley, Chris (2010) Interpreting Landscapes: Geologies, Topographies, Identities. Walnut Creek, CA: Left Coast Press

Bender, B and Hamilton, S and Tilley, C (2007) Stone Worlds: Narrative and Reflexivity in Landscape Archaeology. Left Coast Press: Walnut Creek CA.

Buchli, Victor and Gavin Lucas (eds.) (2001) Archaeologies of the Contemporary Past. London & New York: Routledge

Buchli, V and Lucas, G (2000) The Archaeology of Alienation: A Late 20th. Century British Council Flat. In: Buchli, V and Lucas, G, (eds.) Archaeologies of the Contemporary Past. (158 - 167). Routledge: London.

Copyright Notice: Header pictures by Charlotte Hollands, Hammond Eloise (acquired licence and true copy)