Mark Meagher received a BA with honors from Williams College; an M.Arch. (professional program) from the Harvard Graduate School of Design; and a Ph.D. in Architecture from the Ecole Polytechnique Federale de Lausanne (EPFL).


Before arriving at University of Manitoba I was a Lecturer in Digital Design at the University of Sheffield School of Architecture (2011-2018) where I was co-leader of the MA in Architectural Design postgraduate course. Prior to this I was a researcher in the Media and Design Lab at EPFL (2006-2010) and at the Center for Design Informatics at Harvard University (2002-2005). I have also worked in practice on the design of products and spaces for remote collaboration and digital design learning.

Research and teaching

My current research focuses on applications of building data, open source tools and bespoke software development in early stage architectural design. The communication and structuring of spatial building information is increasingly an element of the architectural design process, as demonstrated by the widespread adoption of Building Information Modelling (BIM) as a tool for design development. BIM has the potential to capture and store the information needed in early design to perform simulations and other types of analysis needed to support an evidence-based design process. Less acknowledged is the capacity of BIM to support a participatory design process that engages communities in organizing knowledge and questioning authority. BIM, and the celebration of building data has the potential to realize both efficiency and poetry in the designed environment. My research responds to the opportunity in early design for the use of software for viewing, editing and evaluating BIM spatial data, producing information relevant to design decision making.

I am interested as an educator and a researcher in developing methods and software that empower creative practice, particularly the participation of underrepresented communities in design and planning. In my research I have developed innovative methods for supporting community participation in architectural projects. I have written about the experiential and poetic potential of responsive buildings and landscapes, the obsolescence of digital hardware and software, and the significance of movement in architectural and digital culture.

My teaching at University of Manitoba includes co-development with Suchita Ghosh of the Environmental Technology course in the Environmental Design department. This course provides an introduction to core concepts related to energy and natural systems in the context of global climate change.

Recent publications

Edited books

Jones, P. B. and Meagher, M. (eds.) (2014) Architecture and Movement.

Journal papers

Meagher, M., Huang, J., Zuelzke, N., Patt, T., Labelle, G., and Nembrini, J. (2015) Code and its image: the functions of text and visualisation in a code-based design studio. Digital Creativity, 26, 92–109.

Meagher, M. (2015) Designing for change: The poetic potential of responsive architecture. Frontiers of Architectural Research, 4, 159 – 165.

Meagher, M. (2014) Responsive architecture and the problem of obsolescence. International Journal of Architectural Research, 8, 95–104.

Meagher, M., van der Maas, D., Abegg, C., and Huang, J. (2013) Dynamic ornament: An investigation of responsive thermochromic surfaces in architecture. International Journal of Architectural Computing, 11, 301–318.

Conference papers

Sorrou, M. and Meagher, M. (2017) Flat form: A software design for capturing the contribution of personality and ordinary activities in the design process. Future Trajectories of Computation in Design, 17th International Conference, CAAD Futures 2017, Istanbul, Turkey, pp. 389–401.

Meagher, M. and Langley, P. (2016) TopoBIM: Web-based spatial topology for early design participation. Complexity & Simplicity - Proceedings of the 34th eCAADe Conference, Oulu, Finland, 22-26 August 2016, pp. 663–672.

Meagher, M., Park, A., and Nembrini, J. (2013) Analyzing the performancebased computational design process: A data study. Rethinking Prototyping: Proceedings of the Design Modelling Symposium, Berlin, Germany, September 28 - October 02 2013, epubli GmbH.