The Bartlett Centre for Advanced Spatial Analysis

Dr Duncan Wilson

Dr Duncan Wilson

Professor of Connected Environments

Centre for Advanced Spatial Analysis

Faculty of the Built Environment

Joined UCL
22nd Oct 2012

Research summary

Research focuses on how emerging technologies such as connected sensors and cognitive computing can augment our understanding of the built and natural environment. Current interests focus on three core research vectors; cognitive computing - AI at the edge of the network on resource constrained devices; extra sensory computing - novel methods for capturing data and humans receiving it; and spatial reasoning systems - how we can augment and improve our world models using an Internet of Things (IoT) for continuous post occupancy evaluation.

Live research projects include: 

  • IoT Living Lab - developing IoT infrastructure across UCL campus as part of a Bartlett and UCL Estates / ISD Digital Campus project. Project includes development of connectivity with existing sensor infrastructure (via UCL building management systems) and retrofit of other IoT technologies (e.g. LoRaWAN) to implement new sensors.
  • Project Hercules - processing, analysis and visualisation of patient flow data from an IoT UWB (Ubisense) sensor system installed in a pop-up eye clinic. Collaboration with Moorfields Eye Hospital.
  • Shazam for Bats - maintaining deployment of EdgeAI Bat Sensors installed in Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park since 2017.

Supervises PhD research at the intersection of the internet of things, artificial intelligence and our built and natural environment.

Teaching summary

Programme leader for the MSc Connected Environments and module leader for:

  • CASA0014 - Connected Environments - introduction to Internet of Things in context of smart products, buildings and cities. Includes introduction to prototyping with Arduino and Raspberry Pi.
  • CASA0018 - Deep Learning for Sensor Networks - implementation of deep learning on microcontrollers and single board computers, i.e. resource constrained devices. Introduction to TinyML and TensorFlow Lite utilising Arduino Nano platform and OpenCV cameras.
  • CASA0020 - Ethics, Sustainability and Business of IoT - focuses on application of IoT in "smart" building / city projects. Includes case studies of IoT applications and strategy development.

Dissertation tutor on CASA0021 - Connected Environments dissertation module - and typically happy to supervise projects that involve building and deploying Internet of Things systems in buildings and (preferably) our natural environment.


University College London
Doctorate, Doctor of Philosophy | 1997
Loughborough University
First Degree, Bachelor of Engineering | 1993


A professional with over 20yrs of digital technology, R&D, innovation and strategy experience developed at individual contributor, team leader and management/executive levels. Primarily working at the interface between industry and academia in roles that challenge me to think about how digital technology can enhance automotive, retail and built environment sectors. 

Currently Professor of Connected Environments in The Bartlett Centre for Advanced Spatial Analysis (CASA) at University College London. His research focuses on how emerging technologies such as connected sensors and cognitive computing can augment our understanding of the built and natural environment.

Previously a member of the Smart London Board and responsible for driving the research agenda of the London based Sustainable Connected Cities research institute for Intel Labs Europe. Directed work of 90+ researchers working on 30+ projects and grew the initial $5m Intel investment to $15m via collaborations with external parties and UK / EU research grants. Successes included; delivering over 100 academic papers, transferring an end-to-end IoT prototype to a product group for commercialisation and multiple awards for our approach to collaborative R&D.

Prior to Intel, co-created foresight and innovation capability at Arup and managed budget / operating plan for 12FTE team (£1.8m per annum). Key projects included creating the Drivers of Change concept and conceiving, designing and developing a website to manage a global internal innovation stage-gate funding process (multiple portfolios, total £15m per annum) and served on the EU Expert Group on the Internet of Things.

A Chartered Engineer with a PhD in Artificial Intelligence and Machine Vision from UCL. A constant work thread has been exploring how the internet and the physical world will continue to merge. A keen maker and Code Club volunteer at a local primary school since 2013.