Dr Juliet Davis
MA DipArch (Cantab) R.I.B.A. PhD
- Director of Postgraduate Teaching
- Co-Director of the MA Urban Design
- MArch Dissertation supervisor
- Undergraduate history and theory lecturer - urban design history, planning communities
- Urban Design Studio tutor and module leader
- Higher degree (PhD) supervisor
- School Executive Committee member
- Board of Studies member
- British Book Reviews Editor for Planning Perspectives (Taylor and Francis journal) (from 2019)
- Editorial Board member of Planning Perspectives (Taylor and Francis journal) (from 2019)
- External Examiner for the London Met School of Art, Architecture and Design MA Architecture, Cities and Urbanism (2021-)
- External Examiner for the Kent School of Architecture BA (Hons) (2018-)
- External Examiner for the Leicester School of Architecture MArch (2014-2018)
- Examiner of higher degree work (at Cambridge University (2012, 2015-2018) and Bristol University (2013))
- Chartered member of the Royal Institute of British Architects
I am a Reader in Architecture and Urbanism.
I received my architectural education at Cambridge University, graduating in 1995 with a first-class degree (and the Edward S. Prior Prize for design) and, in 1999, with a Commendation for the Diploma in Architecture (RIBA Part II). I became a registered architect in 2001 and a Chartered Member of the RIBA in 2005. I worked at Stanton Williams Architects in London between 1995 and 1997, focusing predominantly on the extension and modernisation of the Royal National Theatre but also on Kew Gardens’ Millennium Seed Bank.
At Eric Parry Architects (1999 – 2005), I worked on a number of projects including public realm improvements in the London Borough of Lambeth, an extension to the Wimbledon School of Art and the regeneration of St Martin-in-the-Fields in Trafalgar Square. I began to teach design in 2004, running the first year of the undergraduate design programme at Cambridge University (2004-2005) and, subsequently, running studios at Canterbury School of Architecture and the London School of Economics (LSE) (2008-2011).
I was an LSE Fellow between 2008 and 2011, co-leading the MSc City Design and Social Science studio at the Cities Programme. I completed an Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC) PhD at the LSE in 2011. I took up a Senior Lectureship in Architecture at Cardiff University in late 2012 and was promoted to Reader in 2017. Since 2012, I have taught across the school's undergraduate programmes and I am currently the school's Director of Postgraduate Teaching and Co-Director of the MA Urban Design.
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I teach at various levels of the school. I give lectures on city/town planning history and theory including the Garden City Movement and New Urbanism, on the ideas of urban thinkers such as Ebenezer Howard, Le Corbusier, Jane Jacobs and Richard Sennett, on research methods related to design-based projects and dissertations, and on issues of contemporary urban design (social inclusivity, regeneration, resilience, planned communities, comprehensive versus incremental change, and gentrification).
I teach design in studio where the aim is to engage students critically in the dynamics and politics of urban projects and issues. Recent projects include a studio focussed on one of the planned communities forming part of the 2012 Olympic legacy in East London.
I have several PhD students working on topics broadly connected with my research interests, including contested heritage in Barcelona and politics of regeneration in Valencia.
- Planning history
- Urban Design (theory and practice)
- Urban regeneration
- Mega event cities
- Urban futures (including utopian, sustainable and alternative futures)
- Housing and communities (including affordable housing and ideas of community)
- Care, care ethics
I am an architect and scholar whose teaching and research lie mainly in the fields of Planning History and Urban Design. Three main interests inform my academic research.
First, I am interested in the role of urban/ architectural design in urban regeneration - in how the pasts and futures of sites of renewal are constructed and envisioned in this contexts, in how design is used to transform the image of places and the significance of this for existing communities/ inhabitants, in the use of ‘iconic’ or landmark buildings to draw new attention to places, in the impacts of piecemeal or comprehensive redevelopment and in how transformation unfolds as a process over time. I am particularly interest in the design and use of megaevents such as the Olympic in the transformation of cities, and in the transformation of industrial/ post-industrial urban landscapes.
Second, though in a related way, I am interested in how design anticipates the future, whether as a realm of open possibilities, of creative or speculative opportunity and/or of risk and uncertainty. Design is, of course, always future oriented and always involved in responding to anticipated futures and making futures. However, those futures may be recognised as more or less open, more or less certain, more or less controllable from a present standpoint. Linked to this, I am interested in the crucial role of governance and financing, as well as design, in the development of responses to distant or long-term challenges such as climate change.
Third, I am interested in how Urban Design shapes care practices and relations in cities and also in how it may embody an ethic of care in attending to the needs of human and more-than-human life both now and in the future. My research in this area encompasses design for accessibility, the design of urban atmospheres and design that may be seen to foster place attachment.
The first and second interests developed in the context of and are reflected in my AHRC-funded doctoral thesis ‘Urbanising the Event’, which I completed at the London School of Economics and Political Science in 2011. This examined the processes of envisioning and making a long-term legacy of urban regeneration for the 2012 Olympic site in East London, an area of the capital associated historically with industry and represented officially as one of the most deprived anywhere in the UK. Publications arising from this include a book, ‘Dispersal: Picturing Urban Change in East London’ (the publication of which was supported by a grant from the Paul Mellon Centre for Studies in British Art), and numerous articles focussed on different aspects of the history of planning and design for London’s legacy since 2004 which have been published in peer-reviewed journals including arq, Planning Perspectives and Futures. These interests are also reflected in recent and ongoing research aimed at exploring the construction of the past through planning, focussing on the fate of historical buildings from the era of the city of Cardiff’s coal trading boom and the combination of beliefs, views and ideas shaping their place in plans for the future.
The third interest is demonstrated particularly by my current book ‘Care and the City: Ethics of Urbanism.’ Responding to growing understandings of issues of care in ‘extitutional’ settings, the potential of informal care in urban spaces and the growing literature on inclusive design and wellbeing in cities, this considers the ways in which Urban Design might be thought of in terms of care – as fostering care relations and practices and also embodying an ethic of care. Across eight chapters and through twelve globally distributed case studies, it develops an argument about the nature of caring design and caring cities. It is due to be published by Bristol University Press in 2021.
Related to all three interests, I am currently guest-editing a special issue of the journal Planning Perspectives entitled ‘Epidemics, Planning and the City’ which sets out to explore how cities have confronted epidemics in the past through planning and development, and what lessons this offers for cities today adapting to the challenges posed by the Covid-19 pandemic.
I speak regularly at conferences including those convened by the International Planning History Society (IPHS) and the Society of Architectural Historians (SAH).
I am involved in Cardiff University’s interdisciplinary ‘Future Matters Research Group’ led by Emeritus Professor Barbara Adam and the Sustainable Places Institute. Within the Welsh School of Architecture, I am a member of the ‘Urbanism’ and ‘History and Theory’ research groups.
I am happy to receive enquiries and applications from potential PhD students interested in any of the above themes.
I am also very interested in possibilities to develop my research through research collaborations involving academic and/or industry partners. As a result of my research and professional backgrounds combined, I have skills in planning history, in undertaking and analysing expert interviews, in the spatial analysis (including mapping and photography) and in Urban Design theory and practice.
I am interested in supervising PhD students in the areas of:
- Planning History
- Urban Design: history and theory
Three current PhDs (four as first supervisor)
One completed PhD
Additional supervision interests
She is broadly interested in topics of:
- planning and design for urban change (practices, issues, alternatives)
- regeneration (landscapes and housing)
- post-industrial transformation/ transition
- mega event cities and transformative urban legacies
- urban improvement: concepts and applications
- making urban futures
- ethics and citymaking
In terms of research methods, she is particularly interested in visual research (design analysis, photography and maps) and historical research.
Main Supervisor for Anna Papodopoulou (awarded 2018)