The Bartlett School of Architecture


Bio-Integrated Design (Bio-ID) MArch // MSc

These two new design-led Master's degrees respond to the impact of biotechnology, computation and climate change on the built environment.

Bio-integrated Design

About the programmes  

Our urban habitat today is being fundamentally influenced by revolutions in biotechnology, computation and our exposure to the long-lasting effects of climate change. Bio-Integrated Design takes these revolutions as the foundation for developing novel and sophisticated design solutions to shape the future of our cities.

Taught jointly by The Bartlett School of Architecture and UCL’s Biochemical Engineering Department, Bio-integrated Design combines design experimentation with scientific methods, seeking new modes of simulation and production, and exploring how advances in the fields of synthetic biology, material science and digital fabrication is changing future design practices.

Two distinct Bio-Integrated Design programmes are available: an MArch degree and an MSc degree. Applicants should choose which to apply depending on their background and whether they seek to specialise in more exclusively design or more science-driven outputs.

Bio-Integrated Design is part of B-Pro, a group of five programmes at The Bartlett with a unique shared philosophy. 

The programme is taught in UCL's cutting-edge facilities at Here East, Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park - a space renowned as a hotbed for technological innovation and home to some of the UK's leading performance and design companies. These world-class facilities provide an ideal space for the large-scale construction of installations, as well as for public events.


  • Work with an interdisciplinary team of designers and scientists to establish new forms of design
  • Develop an advanced knowledge of technologies and working methods, which may include digital simulations, synthetic biology and biotechnology and digital fabrication
  • Design innovative bio-integrated systems with a variety of applications
Bio-Integrated Design will only grow in significance in the 21st century, as we see our world shaped by environmental factors beyond our control and in need of greater scientific and architectural innovation. 

Dr Brenda Parker, Department of Biochemical Engineering, UCL

Key staff

Programme Directors

Marcos Cruz is a Professor of Innovative Environments at The Bartlett School of Architecture.

Marcos is the co-founder of the BiotA Lab and co-editor of Syn.de.Bio where he has investigated design that is driven by advances in bio-technology and synthetic biology as well as computation, fields that he believes are radically changing the future of architecture. He has worked and taught over 80 projects that utilise living matter in buildings.

Marcos has taught at the University of Westminster, University of California Los Angeles and is currently a Visiting Professor at the Institute for Advanced Architecture of Catalonia in Barcelona.

Brenda Parker is a Lecturer in the Department of Biochemical Engineering. Her research focuses on industrial biotechnology, in particular using algae for sustainable chemical production. Her approach is highly interdisciplinary, and she regularly collaborates architects and designers, focusing on work at the interface between engineering, molecular biology and synthetic biology.

Modes and duration

Full time - two years 
Flexible - three to five years

Entry requirements

Normally a minimum of a second-class degree from a UK university or an overseas qualification of an equivalent standard. Applicants with extensive experience in the field may also be considered.

In addition to the above:

  • Bio-Integrated Design MArch applicants will be asked to provide a short description of a future Bio-Integrated scenario (max. 300 words) and to submit a strong portfolio of design work. 
  • Bio-Integrated Design MSc applicants will be asked to provide a short description of a future Bio-Integrated scenario (max. 300 word) and  a brief description of a previous research project or dissertation undertaken (max. 250 words)

All applicants to Bio-Inetgrated Design will be invited to an interview (in person or via skype).

Read the full entry requirements in the UCL Graduate Prospectus for:

The application deadline is 27 July 2018 for 2018 entry. 

We strongly advise early application, as our programmes are over-subscribed and competition is high. 


Admissions enquiries: 
Thea Heintz 

Programme enquiries: 
Professor Marcos Cruz (MArch and MSc programmes)
Dr Brenda Parker (MSc programme only)