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UCL Urban Laboratory



Clare Melhuish

  • Director of UCL Urban Laboratory
  • Senior Research Associate
University-led urban regeneration; Modern Movement architectural heritage and social identity; domestic space and cultures; ethnography of architectural design practice; curating the city.

Past Directors

Ben Campkin

  • Director, 2011 - 2018
  • Senior Lecturer in Architectural History and Theory
Urban decline and 'regeneration' in London; housing, including early twentieth century slum clearances, and the representation and redevelopment of modernist mass housing; LGBTQI nightlife space; and the uses of images in urban change.

Matthew Gandy

  • Director, 2005 - 2011
  • Professor of Cultural and Historical Geography and Fellow
Cyborg urbanization; urban metabolism; cinematic landscapes; infrastructure; bio-diversity; epidemiology.


Pushpa Arabindoo

  • Senior Lecturer in Geography and Urban Design
Urbanization, public space and political activism in India; cities and climate change.

Matthew Beaumont

  • Professor of Nineteenth-Century Literature
Night-time city; utopia in fiction writing; urban representations; thinking the city.

Sarah Bell

  • Professor of Environment Engineering
Sustainability of urban water systems, particularly social and policy factors as they relate to engineering; community engagement with engineering and infrastructure provision.

Camillo Boano

  • Professor of Urban Design and Critical Theory
Urban development, contested urbanism, socio-spatial dialectics, design and urban transformations, and shelter and housing reconstruction in geographies of the global south.

Ben Campkin

  • Senior Lecturer in Architectural History and Theory
Urban decline and 'regeneration' in London; housing, including early twentieth century slum clearances, and the representation and redevelopment of modernist mass housing; LGBTQI nightlife space; and the uses of images in urban change.

Ellie Cosgrave

  • Lecturer in Urban Innovation and Director of UCL City Leadership Laboratory
Urban and local governance; city leadership; engineering design; smart cities; sustainable urban environments; choreographing the city.

Andrew Harris

  • Senior Lecturer in Geography and Urban Studies
Art, space and the city; creative cities; gentrification; urban infrastructure; vertical urbanism.

Jennifer Robinson

  • Professor of Human Geography
South Africa, including studies of segregation and state power; the politics of urban development; comparative urbanism; city strategies and the circulation of urban policy.

Centre Manager

Steering Committee

Michele Acuto

  • Professor of Diplomacy and Urban Theory
Global city politics; the use of STS methods in international relations and urbanism; the intersection between city networks, urbanisation and global governance

Yasminah Beebeejaun

  • Senior Lecturer in Urban Planning
Territorialisation of certain spaces as ethnic; community engagement in decision-making; and exploration of the creation of inequalities both within historical and contemporary debates about nationhood, colonialism, and postcolonial society in post-war Britain and North America

Iain Borden

  • Professor of Architecture and Urban Culture
Large-scale architectural and urban spaces in cities worldwide; cities, film and mobility

Victor Buchli

  • Professor of Material Culture
Architecture, domesticity, the archaeology of the recent past, critical understandings of materiality and new technologies and the anthropology of sustainability and design

Licia Capra

  • Professor of Pervasive Computing
Ubiquitous computing. Specific topics include: crowd-sourcing and crowd-sensing, urban computing, location-based services, recommender systems, data mining for development

Claire Colomb

  • Reader in Planning and Urban Sociology
Urban governance, policies and politics, European spatial planning, and urban sociology

Adam Drazin

  • Teaching Fellow in Anthropology
Culture, materials and design

Murray Fraser

  • Professor of Architecture and Global Culture
Design, architectural history & theory, urbanism, and cultural studies

Alexandre Apsan Frediani

  • Lecturer in Development Planning
Housing and squatter settlement upgrading; participatory approaches to research, planning and design; social movements and right to the city; urban regeneration and well-being; human development and the capability approach

Barbara Lipietz

  • Lecturer in Development Planning
Urban governance, participatory governance and planning through co-production; circulation and localisation of public policy; anti-poverty strategies; inclusive cities and the 'right to the city', sustainable cities, resilient cities; housing policy, slum upgrading practices, urban regeneration

Susan Moore

  • Lecturer in Planning
Sustainable urban development processes and practices; Relational geographies of urban (and suburban) development and built form

James O'Leary

  • Senior Lecturer in Architecture and Innovative Technology
Contemporary Art & Architecture, Situated Practices, Critical Spatial Practice, Narrative Spaces, Urban Memory, Contested Space

Kieren Reed

  • Lecturer in Fine Art
Sculpture, performance, installation, public art, culture-led regeneration

Rafael Schacter

  • Research Fellow in Anthropology
Independent public art; street art and graffiti; visual culture; vernacular art; popular politics; public sphere; anthropology of art; material culture

Artist in Residence

International Advisory Board

İpek Akpınar (Istanbul Technical University)

Karen Bakker (University of British Columbia)

Stephen Barber (Kingston University)

Neil Brenner (Harvard University)

Dominic Church (German Sustainable Building Council DGNB)

Mustafa Dikec (École d’urbanisme de Paris)

Michael Edwards (University College London)

Adrian Forty (University College London)

Susanne Frank (TU Dortmund University)

David Gissen (California College of the Arts)

Stephen Graham (Durham University)

Jane M. Jacobs (Yale-NUS College)

Gareth Jones (London School of Economics)

Roger Keil (York University, Toronto)

Jorge Francisco Liernur (Torcuato Di Tella University)

Patrick LeGales (Sciences Po Paris)

Julia Lossau (Humboldt University of Berlin)

Iain Low (University of Cape Town, African Centre for Cities)

Jeremy Melvin (Royal Academy)

Ayodeji Olukoju (Caleb University, Lagos)

Kate Orff (Columbia University)

Vyjayanthi Rao (Terreform Center for Advanced Urban Research)

Rebecca Ross (Central Saint Martins College of Art and Design)

AbdouMaliq Simone (Max Planck Institute for the Study of Religious and Ethnic Diversity)

Erik Swyngedouw (Manchester University)

Karen Till (National University of Ireland Maynooth)

Visiting Researchers


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