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Design Research

This area encompasses research conducted through the critically reflective process of designing architectural, landscape and urban design projects.

The group also undertakes conventional publication-based research that examines the design process, the particular forms of knowledge it produces, and design education as a distinctive context and paradigm of learning.

  • Areas of ResearchLearn about our research focus areas and supervision expertise

    Within this area, research is undertaken in a variety of modes concerned with design practice including the following:

    • The activity of designing in the disciplines of Architecture, Landscape Architecture and Urban Design is undertaken as a research activity where built outcomes are both the ongoing experiment and the outcome of experiments in the formal and material resolution of specific questions about landscapes, built structure, cities and the demonstrable relationships they represent.
    • Research into the production of designed works by designers includes both critical reflection and curatorial redocumentation of past work, as well as the development and testing of a new design methods through new design projects.
  • ResearchersMeet our academic research leaders
    Ian McDougalL
    Professor Ian McDougallResearch Group Head

    Ian is founding director of internationally acclaimed firm Ashton Raggatt McDougall. His design practice entails research endeavour embodied in such major projects as the Melbourne Recital Centre and Marion Cultural Centre. A focus of the practice is ongoing inquiry into the design of public works, reinterpreting common architectural typologies (the recital hall, museum, library) for their own time and place.
    Dr Urs Bette
    Dr Urs BetteUrs is a practicing architect in Germany, concerned with the development of architecture which tests the relationship of objects to their sites. He examines ideas of the charged void through recurring spatial sequences and morphological qualities of the work. Related investigations consider relationships between intuition and control in design activity as well as those between analogue and digital production.
    Tanya Court
    Tanya Court A registered landscape architect, Tanya's research encompasses built work and policy in and for the public realm. Her projects include curatorial practice as well as award-winning and competition-winning public realm projects and public space policy development, questioning and developing new approaches and appreciations.
    Jo Russell-Clarke
    Dr Jo Russell-Clarke Jo is a registered landscape architect researching in the broader area of urbanism. Her work examines the building of physical infrastructures, with a past focus on the suburbs as sites of amateur making and utopian ambition. In this context her work advocates for consciousness of the politics of design and making for resistance to the de-politicisation of design activity.

    Susan Shannon
    Dr Susan Shannon Dr Susan Shannon Susan's key area of research interest is the evaluation of student learning outcomes. She has examined the contribution of blended learning environments to students' learning outcomes including studio learning, particularly the teaching of tectonics of design to first and third year design and architectural engineering students. Her recent work has investigated opportunities and impediments to careers in architecture for women.
    Julian Worrall
    Dr Julian Worrall Julian's international practice career has included working with Klein Dytham in Tokyo and Office for Metropolitan Architecture in Rotterdam on projects in Australia, Japan, Netherlands, UK, France, and the Middle East. His creative interests in architecture take as a point of departure Walter Benjamin's observation that architecture is an art form received by a "collectivity in a state of distraction," and are inspired by the dense complexity of metropolitan environments. His design thinking explores the architectural and aesthetic tensions between modernist logics of rational organisation and production, and the situated contingency of local relations, collective and personal narratives, and critical reflection. He welcomes research by design projects that resonate with these concerns.
  • PhD Student ResearchersMeet our student researchers and enquire about joining the group
  • External Collaborators / Adjuncts/ FellowsExplore opportunities for industry and professional collaboration

    The University of Adelaide understands the importance of collaborative research and strong partnerships with industry and professionals in today's global market.

    We view these interactions as essential elements in advancing the University's research and teaching objectives as well as adding value to you as our partners.

    The Faculty of the Professions is renowned for its academic diversity and is home to some of the most respected and eminent researchers at the University of Adelaide. Within the School of Education and ETC, our commitment to innovation and a culture of forward thinking helps to influence the world we live in.

    Our collaborative research activities span across government, business and community groups. Our under-pinning philosophy of research partnerships is to match your community needs and business opportunities with the resources and expertise of our Faculty. The expertise and knowledge of our academic staff, who are specialists in their fields, present great opportunities for organisations to grow and to make decisive contributions that can influence strategic agendas and operational frameworks.

Design Research and Learning

School of Architecture
& Built Environment

Faculty of the Professions


The University of Adelaide
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