Dr. Laura Coucill

School of Science, Engineering and Environment

Image of Dr. Laura Coucill coming soon

Contact Details

New SEE Building - Room 03.22

Office hours: Monday - Friday 9am-5pm

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Current positions

Senior Lecturer in Architecture

Biography

Dr. Laura Coucill is a Senior Lecturer in Architecture at University of Salford with practice expertise in large industrial and complex heritage sites. She has over a decade of experience teaching accredited Architecture programmes at prominent HE Institutions, including Queen’s University Belfast (QUB), Manchester School of Architecture (MSA), Sheffield School of Architecture (SSoA) and Birmingham School of Architecture (BSA) which include unit leadership, year leadership and programme leadership duties. Dr. Coucill’s academic teaching is always engaged with the contemporary issues and questions of the practice, industry, and profession of architecture

Her research interest is in the spatial manifestation of culture, policy and technology. Laura’s work adopts cross-thematic spatial analysis techniques, which combine historical and theoretical methodologies with contemporary data mapping to capture spatial capacity, operation, performance and experience. Findings underpin the re-evaluation of existing urban conditions and propose resilient, future urban forms. This work has involved working closely with architectural practices, technology experts, local authorities, transnational and government organisations.

Dr Coucill has successfully secured funded Doctoral Training Partnerships which have brought together academic expertise with heritage organisations to explore routes to decarbonisation in protected and historic environments.

Areas of research

Architecture, Urban Futures, Infrastructure, Spatial Analysis, Heritage, Decarbonisation, Sustainability, Policy and Regulation

Areas of supervision

Architecture, Urban Futures, Infrastructure, Spatial Analysis, Heritage, Decarbonisation, Sustainability, Policy and Regulation

Teaching

  • Architecture and Design Studio Modules
  • Dissertation

Research Interests

My expertise is in the relationship between architectural design and future cities. This encompasses knowledge of urban theory and historic and contemporary infrastructures. My research focuses on the interface between technology, culture and place, to address complex, multidisciplinary contemporary urban challenges, including climate, health and energy. I adopt cross-cutting data-mapping and analysis methodologies, to test system integration against social, economic and spatial conditions. Specific examples of my experience exploring the knowledge and themes above include:

  • Paul Mellon Education Grant (2018) - fieldwork and site visits to Harlow New Town and Fredrick Gibberd’s house and archives, as well as the Landscape Institute archives at University of Reading.
  • Jean Monnet Centre of Excellence (2019) - exploratory workshops, connecting students with industry partners from technology and policy experts including CISCO, BT and Connected Places Catapult.
  • Transition Support Fund (£6k, 2022) - trans-disciplinary material testing workshops to explore material reuse and circularity as low and zero carbon building strategies.
  • Satellite Applications Catapult (£35k, 2016 – 2018) - pilot studies into the delivery of community centred remote healthcare. Building on spatial analysis projects in the Scottish Highlands (2016/17) and Cornwall (2017/18) previously mentioned.
  • Distributed Digital Farming (Centre for Wireless Innovation, EPSRC bid, 2020) - collaboration with telecommunications and computer science to recycle heat produced by digital farming to support aquaponic food production systems.
  • British Council Going Global Partnership (2021 – 2023) – a transnational design studio involving co-teaching and collaboration between undergraduates at American University in Cairo, Queen’s University Belfast and University of Salford through an exploration of heritage, carbon and the climate emergency. The project involves representation at COP27 and an opportunity for students to participate in fieldwork at each institution.

Qualifications & Memberships

Qualifications

  • 2019    PGCert Learning and Teaching in Higher Education (Distinction)
  • 2015    PhD: Tensions Between Theory and Practice in Sustainable Architectural Design
  • 2012    PGCert Certificate in Research Methods, Birmingham Institute of Art and Design
  • 2009    BArch (Distinction), Manchester School of Architecture
  • 2008    MA Architecture + Urbanism (Merit), Manchester School of Architecture
  • 2006    BA (Hons) Architecture (2:1), Manchester School of Architecture