Architecture and the Built Environment (PhD)

2019-20 (also available for 2020-21)

This course is eligible for Doctoral loan funding. Find out more.

Start date

23 September 2019

13 January 2020

6 April 2020

Duration

The maximum duration for a full-time PhD is 3 years (36 months) with an optional submission pending (writing up period) of 12 months.

Sometimes it may be possible to mix periods of both full-time and part-time study.

Application deadlines

For PGR start date January 2020

29 November 2019

For PGR start date April 2020

11 February 2020

For PGR start date September 2020

02 July 2020

About the research degree

A PhD is the highest academic award for which a student can be registered. This programme allows you to explore and pursue a research project built around a substantial piece of work, which has to show evidence of original contribution to knowledge.

A full time PhD is a three year full time or six year part time programme of research and culminates in the production of a large-scale piece of work in the form of a research thesis that should not normally exceed 80,000 words. We also accept applications for PhD projects which are practice-orientated and which include portfolio submissions. These include practice submissions with written components. You will receive guidance from your supervisory team as to the percentage equivalents between the practice and written elements of your research project.

Completing a PhD can give you a great sense of personal achievement and help you develop a high level of transferable skills which will be useful in your subsequent career, as well as contributing to the development of knowledge in your chosen field.

You are expected to work to an approved programme of work including appropriate programmes of postgraduate study (which may be drawn from parts of existing postgraduate courses, final year degree programmes, conferences, seminars, guided reading or a combination of study methods).

You will be appointed a main supervisor who will normally be part of a supervisory team, comprising up to three members to advise and support you on your project.

Entry requirements

Entry requirements for this course are normally:

A Master’s degree or an Honours degree (2:1 or above) or equivalent, in a discipline appropriate to the proposed programme to be followed, or appropriate research or professional experience at postgraduate level, which has resulted in published work, written reports or other appropriate evidence of accomplishment.

If your first language is not English, you will need to meet the minimum requirements of an English Language qualification. The minimum for IELTS is 6.0 overall with no element lower than 5.5, or equivalent will be considered acceptable. Read more about the University’s entry requirements for students outside of the UK on our Where are you from information pages.

What can I research?

There are several research topics available for this degree. See below examples of research areas including an outline of the topics, the supervisor, funding information and eligibility criteria:

Outline

Urban development in contemporary cities in developing countries has radically changed urban landscapes, but is very often represented by a juxtaposition of traditional and modern forms, materials, and ornaments that are consciously intended to communicate connections between the past and the present. The challenge for city development is to consider heritage conservation and preserve local communities with their cultural heritage, as well as take into consideration environmental concerns, and aspirations for landscape and nature preservation.

In rural areas of developing countries, the relatively isolated geographical condition and slowly developing human settlements have given rise to diversified rural villages and small towns that maintain a cultural complex with all its distinctive features. These rural areas, however, are actively looking for a balance between the conservation of traditional settlements and the chance for further economic development.

Both urban and rural regions have been influenced by the recent and rapid modernization processes in developing countries. Studies need to explore in these changing processes, how buildings and urban spaces have become a system of references of people’s activities and experience.

Funding

Please link to this page https://research.hud.ac.uk/research-degrees/researchscholarships/schoolofartdesignandarchitecturescholarships/

Deadline

please use central deadline found here https://research.hud.ac.uk/research-degrees/how-to-apply/

Supervisors

How to apply

Outline

Skills and knowledge required for designing within different cultures and societies play an important part of the architecture curriculum and practice. Cross-cultural architectural design addresses issues of globalisation in architectural education and practice when increasingly students study in overseas universities and architectural practices engage with works of overseas projects.

Furthermore, architectural students’ education in the university and their learning experience in architectural offices for placement are integrated part of a process for a student to become a registered architect. Studies need to explore how individual architecture students perceive and value their learning experience in universities and architectural offices and how students understand and integrate what they have learned in university and in practice.

Funding

Please link to this page https://research.hud.ac.uk/research-degrees/researchscholarships/schoolofartdesignandarchitecturescholarships/

Deadline

please use central deadline found here https://research.hud.ac.uk/research-degrees/how-to-apply/

Supervisors

How to apply

Outline

The globalization and urbanization have brought significant changes to architecture and built environment in developing countries. Contemporary design and construction processes not only introduce new materials, technologies, and building regulations, but also lead to different systems of urban and architectural knowledge that focus on the sustainability-related design ideas, assessment techniques, and practical guidance that have a greater focus on energy issues in urban and rural environment.

On the social and cultural aspects of sustainable design, it is important to exploit opportunities to protect architectural heritage, in both urban and rural areas, that forms the collective cultural memory of a society, acting as a source of inspiration, creativity and enterprise for current and future generations. The architectural heritage in both urban and rural development can usefully inform our understanding of the contemporary (globalised) built environment.

Funding

Please link to this page https://research.hud.ac.uk/research-degrees/researchscholarships/schoolofartdesignandarchitecturescholarships/

Deadline

please use central deadline found here https://research.hud.ac.uk/research-degrees/how-to-apply/

Supervisors

How to apply

Outline

There has been a significant increase in infrastructure and large scale building projects across the world over the last few decades. Traditional measure of cost, time and quality have been applied to evaluate the success of such projects. However, such measures are only concerned with the immediate project outputs rather than considering the outcomes of such projects and more importantly the benefits that are delivered through built infrastructure.

This area of research will investigate the degree to which benefits are an integral part of the project-process and to what degree they are realised. PhD investigations are likely to look at longitudinal studies in specific sectors, such as healthcare (hospitals, clinics, etc.) housing, schools, road infrastructure, retail, entertainment, etc. as well as examine the degree to which benefits are designed-in in projects as well as those realised in-use.

Candidates will be engaging in a diverse and broad range of multidisciplinary literature and are likely to provide insights and make novelty contributions in transdisciplinary research

Funding

Please link to this page https://research.hud.ac.uk/research-degrees/researchscholarships/schoolofartdesignandarchitecturescholarships/

Deadline

please use central deadline found here https://research.hud.ac.uk/research-degrees/how-to-apply/

Supervisors

How to apply

Outline

Research studies into the way in which authorities, public servants, media, private sector, and civil society coordinate in communities, and on regional and national levels in order to manage and reduce disaster and climate related risks.

Funding

Please link to this page https://research.hud.ac.uk/research-degrees/researchscholarships/schoolofartdesignandarchitecturescholarships/

Deadline

please use central deadline found here https://research.hud.ac.uk/research-degrees/how-to-apply/

Supervisors

How to apply

Outline

Current evidence on the impacts of the built environment on health outcomes tends to be based on the evaluation of single factors. Furthermore, there are limited studies evaluating the impact of multiple factors on health outcomes. One challenge is that it is difficult to untangle the interplay of diverse built environment factors and how these may affect a multitude of health outcomes. This project aims to develop a method to help designers understand and consider existing research findings when developing healthcare design solutions.

Funding

Please link to this page https://research.hud.ac.uk/research-degrees/researchscholarships/schoolofartdesignandarchitecturescholarships/

Deadline

please use central deadline found here https://research.hud.ac.uk/research-degrees/how-to-apply/

Supervisors

How to apply

Outline

New Product Development (NPD) is still very poorly understood in Architecture, Engineering and Built Environment. Recent Developments through the RIBA and other professional bodies are making attempts to provide a holistic view of NPD and fail to capture the true value of efficient and effective NPD. Furthermore, there is a confusion of what are the constituent parts of NPD, how it is enacted in practice and how it can be improved.

This area of research will seek to highlight significant innovation in the area of NPD, evaluate existing practice and make novel contributions in theory and practice. The research is likely to involve multiple case studies and in particular examine aspects of collaboration for better NPD, enactment of process and its implementation for concurrency and overlapping activities, agile and lean NPD processes, etc.

The literature will cover multiple sectors and disciplines and is likely to focus on production, NPD, management science and Design.

Funding

Please link to this page https://research.hud.ac.uk/research-degrees/researchscholarships/schoolofartdesignandarchitecturescholarships/

Deadline

please use central deadline found here https://research.hud.ac.uk/research-degrees/how-to-apply/

Supervisors

How to apply

Outline

The management of the design process has been a topic of study for over 40 years. The relationship between clients and designers, and the effectiveness of the briefing in determining requirements are main contributing factors for good design.

This project looks at better identifying issues around requirements capture and management in construction, investigating the role of technologies such as Building Information Modelling (BIM) in supporting this process.

Funding

Please link to this page https://research.hud.ac.uk/research-degrees/researchscholarships/schoolofartdesignandarchitecturescholarships/

Deadline

please use central deadline found here https://research.hud.ac.uk/research-degrees/how-to-apply/

Supervisors

How to apply

Outline

Global warming is expected to continue for some considerable time even if drivers such as carbon dioxide emissions begin to be reduced. In these circumstances some locations, for instance in the middle-east, will experience ambient external temperatures beyond anything found in the modern world – perhaps above 60C. There is therefore a need to understand the implications of such a scenario when it would be virtually impossible for a human being to live or work outdoors except for very short periods and/or with the help of protection systems. This project would consider the limits to tolerance of humans along with potential technologies/techniques that might be used to reduce impacts and risks. The project is expected to make use of simulation and modelling and could be linked to any part of the world which might experience high external temperatures. There are many sub-themes to this topic area and applicants are invited to describe their own interest and directions for study. Applicants should have good knowledge and/or experience of one of the following areas: architecture; planning; environmental design/building design; construction science; building services; architectural technology; or a related area.

Funding

Please link to this page https://research.hud.ac.uk/research-degrees/researchscholarships/schoolofartdesignandarchitecturescholarships/

Deadline

please use central deadline found here https://research.hud.ac.uk/research-degrees/how-to-apply/

Supervisors

How to apply

Outline

Lean Construction has been researched for over 25 years, however its adoption by small and medium enterprises, which comprise most of the design and construction companies, is still low. Similarly, major companies have been adopting building information modelling, however there are challenges for SMEs to adopt BIM. This research will investigate the issues and propose strategies for Lean and BIM adoption by small and medium enterprises.

Funding

Please link to this page https://research.hud.ac.uk/research-degrees/researchscholarships/schoolofartdesignandarchitecturescholarships/

Deadline

please use central deadline found here https://research.hud.ac.uk/research-degrees/how-to-apply/

Supervisors

How to apply

Outline

Early warning is a major element of disaster risk reduction. It can prevent loss of life and reduce the economic and material impacts of hazardous events including disasters. To be effective, early warning systems need to actively involve the people and communities at risk from a range of hazards, facilitate public education and awareness of risks, disseminate messages and warnings efficiently and ensure that there is a constant state of preparedness and that early action is enabled.

Funding

Please link to this page https://research.hud.ac.uk/research-degrees/researchscholarships/schoolofartdesignandarchitecturescholarships/

Deadline

please use central deadline found here https://research.hud.ac.uk/research-degrees/how-to-apply/

Supervisors

How to apply

Outline

The aim of the research is to develop a novel and practical solution to perform data capature on construction site to enable the comparison during construction of a structure as-built position against the design model using Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAV / Drone) and ground based 3D scanning facilities. The new process will be more precise, efficient, economic and safer in comparison to current common field-surveying methods and It will deliver substantial benefits for clients, across the entire lifecycle of a project.

Funding

Please link to this page https://research.hud.ac.uk/research-degrees/researchscholarships/schoolofartdesignandarchitecturescholarships/

Deadline

please use central deadline found here https://research.hud.ac.uk/research-degrees/how-to-apply/

Supervisors

How to apply

Outline

In recent decades most attention has been on sustainable development of cities and urban areas. This omits a large and important building sector in the countryside. There is scope therefore to address this issue taking new perspectives and including an understanding of rural populations – their attributes and their needs.

The project could be concerned with design and construction or take larger scale view of planning activities. Transport and materials are likely to be important components of the research too. This project could be linked to an existing research network focused on China, but could also be linked to other countries including the UK.

Applicants should have good knowledge and/or experience of one of the following areas: building design; construction methods; climate sensitive design; planning; architecture; or a related area.

Funding

Please see our Scholarships page to find out about funding or studentship options available.

Deadline

Supervisors

How to apply

Outline

This project seeks to use an expanded definition of technology enhanced Tapestry to engage local communities and their collective memories to render visible those fugitive histories and archives in danger of disappearance.

Funding

Please see our Scholarships page to find out about funding or studentship options available.

Deadline

Supervisors

How to apply

Outline

The design of building environments to provide comfort often requires the use of space conditioning systems (heating/ventilation/air conditioning) with consequential use of energy. It is known that occupants react differently to sealed and more naturally conditioned spaces and that their perceptions of comfort also vary.

Many studies of comfort focus on air temperature and humidity however other environmental factors such as air movement and radiant temperature also have impacts – sometimes subtle and sometimes more significant – particularly when moving from one location to another in a building.

This project would attempt to assess the impact of those factors and build the concept of building environmental variability into a better understanding of comfort and building occupants. Applicants should have good knowledge and/or experience of one of the following areas: environmental design/building design; construction science; building services; architectural technology; or a related area

Funding

Please see our Scholarships page to find out about funding or studentship options available.

Deadline

Supervisors

How to apply

Outline

The design of building environments to provide comfort often requires the use of space conditioning systems (heating/ventilation/air conditioning) with consequential use of energy. It is known that occupants react differently to sealed and more naturally conditioned spaces and that their perceptions of comfort also vary. Many studies of comfort focus on air temperature and humidity however other environmental factors such as air movement and radiant temperature also have impacts – sometimes subtle and sometimes more significant – particularly when moving from one location to another in a building. This project would attempt to assess the impact of those factors and build the concept of building environmental variability into a better understanding of comfort and building occupants. Applicants should have good knowledge and/or experience of one of the following areas: environmental design/building design; construction science; building services; architectural technology; or a related area.

Funding

Please link to this page https://research.hud.ac.uk/research-degrees/researchscholarships/schoolofartdesignandarchitecturescholarships/

Deadline

please use central deadline found here https://research.hud.ac.uk/research-degrees/how-to-apply/

Supervisors

How to apply

Outline

The research aims at investigating the notion of Urban Commons and their spatial unfolding in relationship to the City. Taking into considerations the wider debate on Commons and its relevance to several disciplines (economics, geography, law, etc.) including architecture and urban design, the research aims at focusing on their spatial implications, both in terms of spatial practices and in terms of design agencies.

Funding

Please link to this page https://research.hud.ac.uk/research-degrees/researchscholarships/schoolofartdesignandarchitecturescholarships/

Deadline

please use central deadline found here https://research.hud.ac.uk/research-degrees/how-to-apply/

Supervisors

How to apply

Outline

The concept of design waste is elusive, and it is difficult in practice to identify which design activities are wasteful, and which design activities are important to generate better value through design solutions.

This project will seek to identify the concept of waste in design, discuss how it relates to design errors and develop a model aimed at helping designers eliminate wasteful activities during the design process.

Funding

Please link to this page https://research.hud.ac.uk/research-degrees/researchscholarships/schoolofartdesignandarchitecturescholarships/

Deadline

please use central deadline found here https://research.hud.ac.uk/research-degrees/how-to-apply/

Supervisors

How to apply

Outline

Many hospitals have developed over a number of years in a piecemeal fashion. This has resulted in complex environments made up of long and confusing corridor systems. Such settings challenge and frustrate those who visit them. The importance of wayfinding to building use, costs and safety and the growth in terms of theories, principles, guidelines, and methodologies over the years does not appear to have made an impact on wayfinding performance in complex hospitals. Thus, there remains a need to find more effective wayfinding solutions to the problems that continue to occur in complex hospitals

Funding

Please link to this page https://research.hud.ac.uk/research-degrees/researchscholarships/schoolofartdesignandarchitecturescholarships/

Deadline

please use central deadline found here https://research.hud.ac.uk/research-degrees/how-to-apply/

Supervisors

How to apply

The School of Art, Design and Architecture, home to award-winning staff members at the University of Huddersfield, fosters the next generation of creative researchers as part of a dynamic and interactive learning community enabling postgraduate students to nurture and develop their talents. The School has approximately 100+ research students, from a growing number of different nationalities. We particularly welcome transdisciplinary working.

You will be welcomed into a vibrant postgraduate research community housed within our new Barbara Hepworth Building. Opened in 2019, the building is located on the University campus overlooking the picturesque Huddersfield Narrow Canal. It is an environment equipped with state of the art facilities and spaces for collaborative thinking and exchange. The building has a dedicated postgraduate suite for our research students.

You will find listed on this course finder page several ‘research topics’ which have been designed by experienced PhD supervisors. It may be that you are interested in pursuing an aspect of one of these projects, so do please consider approaching the named academic to discuss your ideas in further detail.

You may also want to design a PhD project of your own. We very much welcome applications in the following broad research areas:


• Architectural Design
• Architectural History and Theory
• BIM
• Conservation
• Construction Project Management
• Design Management
• Disaster Resilience and Reconstruction
• Healthcare in the Built Environment
• Lean Construction
• Modelling, Simulation and Serious games
• Process and Performance Management
• Supply Chain Management
• Sustainable Environmental Design and Energy Efficiency
• Urban Design
• Transdisciplinary research in architecture and the built environment

To find out more about the research we conduct, take a look at our Research, Innovation and Skills webpages, where you will find information on each research area. . To find out about our staff visit ‘Our experts’ which features profiles of all our academic staff.

If you would like further guidance about undertaking postgraduate study within the School of Art, Design and Architecture, or to seek advice about writing a project proposal as part of your application, do please make contact with our postgraduate administration team for further information: sadapgradmin@hud.ac.uk

We look forward to hearing from you.

Research Enviroment

We provide a supportive and vibrant research environment for postgraduate researchers (PGRs). Researchers at all levels are encouraged to contribute and collaborate. The Graduate School ensures that postgraduate research is of the highest quality and equips you with the resources that you need to become a successful researcher.

We have an exciting and comprehensive Researcher Skills Development Programme available to all postgraduate researchers. This enables you to broaden your knowledge and access tools and skills which can significantly improve employability. The programme is also mapped onto Vitae’s Researcher Development Framework (RDF), allowing you to benefit from Vitae support as well as our own Programme.

We offer skills training through a programme designed to take advantage of technology platforms as well as face-to-face workshops and courses. The University has subscribed to Epigeum, a programme of on-line research training support designed and managed by staff at Imperial College London which will be accessed via Brightspace, the University’s Virtual Learning Environment. We also subscribe to the University of East Anglia webinar series and The Good Doctorate video training series. We are part of the North West and Yorkshire PGR Training Group that allows PGRs to attend relevant training opportunities at other nearby universities.

Student support

At the University of Huddersfield, you'll find support networks and services to help you get ahead in your studies and social life. Whether you study at undergraduate or postgraduate level, you'll soon discover that you're never far away from our dedicated staff and resources to help you to navigate through your personal student journey. Find out more about all our support services.

Important information

We will always try to deliver your course as described on this web page. However, sometimes we may have to make changes to aspects of a course or how it is delivered. We only make these changes if they are for reasons outside of our control, or where they are for our students' benefit. We will let you know about any such changes as soon as possible. Our regulations set out our procedure which we will follow when we need to make any such changes.

When you enrol as a student of the University, your study and time with us will be governed by a framework of regulations, policies and procedures, which form the basis of your agreement with us. These include regulations regarding the assessment of your course, academic integrity, your conduct (including attendance) and disciplinary procedure, fees and finance and compliance with visa requirements (where relevant). It is important that you familiarise yourself with these as you will be asked to agree to abide by them when you join us as a student. You will find a guide to the key terms here, where you will also find links to the full text of each of the regulations, policies and procedures referred to.

The Office for Students (OfS) is the principal regulator for the University.