Mohamad T. Araji
Environmental Design Program
Dr. Mohamad T. Araji’s research involves architecture as it relates to building science and technology, sustainable design systems and energy efficiency. The main focus is on low-impact climatically-responsive built environments that showcase an inclusive urban ecosystem to reduce carbon emissions, balance resources consumption, and enhance human health and wellbeing. His discipline posits effective plans for coherent design typologies, building methods and materials performance. The following represents the scope of Dr. Araji’s research:
- Influences of climate and human comfort on design.
- Strategic energy-efficient utilizations in architecture.
- Sustainable passive and active design systems integration.
- High performance optimization for architectural and urban conditions.
- Integrated renewable energy towards yield design optimization to meet net-zero goals.
- Balancing human health and wellbeing in architecture.
- Sustainable materials involving assessment factors of greater design flexibility and adaptability, reduced maintenance, carbon footprint, minimal emissions, low toxicity or nontoxic material, reduced manufacturing energy, reduced packaging and transportation waste, resource efficient materials, recyclability and recycled content, local/regional sourcing, affordability and economically sustainable.
- Computational fluids dynamic and inclusion of air purification in office environments.
- Data visualization.
- Other: notion of the integrated design process, dayligtying design, Radiance-Matlab visualization, and transitional spaces.
Part of Dr. Araji’s interest is parametric modeling to optimize design methodology for life expectancy and urban density and to analyze design impact on the production of excess carbon dioxide relevant to the architectural urban conditions, covering: built environment morphologies; emergent building methods; energy, water, and waste systems; transit and connectivity plans; smart infrastructures; and community engagement programs.
I am only interested in PhD applicants who have extensive experience in computational and digital tools (involving scripting for parametric design, physics simulation, and form finding optimization). The methods, tools and softwares that an applicant should have expertise in, include: CFD, heat-transfer, and form theories using Matlab, C++, C sharp, Python, Rhino and Grasshopper, Energy+, FloVENT or similar etc.
Mohamad T. Araji's complete faculty bio.
Department of Architecture
Eduardo Aquino is Associate Professor at the Department of Architecture, concentrating research in the areas of History & Theory of Architecture (Modern and Contemporary), Urban Theory, Urban Design & Public Space (including Public Art), and interconnections between Architecture & Landscape. I have a particular interest in interdisciplinary approaches of architectural history, cultural history, critical theory, art criticism, and urbanism. My doctorate research, Beachscape: The Rediscovery of Public Space on the Beach, concentrated on beachscapes: how the beach constructs engaging public spaces in complex urban contexts, looking at the urban beach as a model for the reinvention of urban spaces and architectural design in general, revealing a microcosm of the larger city within buildings and places of a heightened public character.
My commitment to Interdisciplinary Studies and Practice led me to graduate with a Masters of Fine Arts in Open Media from Concordia University, after an initial professional degree in Architecture and Urbanism (São Paulo), which eventually supported the creation of the Masters of Fine Arts in Interdisciplinary Arts Program at Goddard College (Vermont, USA), which I was an Associate Professor, and a founder-collaborator. Over my academic experience I have taught in Architecture, Urbanism, Interior Design, Liberal Arts, and Fine Arts (especially sculpture, public art, and new media). I also have an interest in the relationship of academia & practice, especially research projects that have a focus on applied research, in new technologies, in issues connected to craft and making, and projects that intend to create a dialogue between art, architecture & the city. In this process I propose an experimental path of exploration in developing alternative relationships of human interaction with the built and natural environments, along with the theoretical speculations that help us to better understand contemporary culture and the contemporary city.
Eduardo Aquino's complete faculty bio.
Department of Architecture
Dr. Mercedes Garcia Holguera is a registered architect from the Polytechnic University of Madrid in Spain, and she has worked at leading architecture firms in Canada, Mexico and Chile before joining the Department of Architecture at the University of Manitoba in 2019. She is also a LEED AP BD+C and believes that the professional practice needs to move from a mechanistic interpretation of environmental issues towards a holistic and inclusive understanding of the field as related to the ideas of regenerative and biomimetic design.
Mercedes’ research follows a transdisciplinary approach to environmental building science that is inspired by Nature’s principles (as described in biomimicry and biomimetic design theories).
Biomimetic or biologically inspired design emulates Nature’s successful strategies in human constructs and has the potential to contribute to climate change adaptation and mitigation, as well as increase the catalogue of environmental solutions in architecture. Biomimetic design is one effective and powerful tool for designing innovative built environments, and to expand the limits of creativity by training students in transdisciplinary methods. Students that participate on biomimetic courses and research are compelled to use knowledge and tools from other disciplines, they engage in complex systems thinking and develop sophisticated ways to face uncertainty during the design process. There are strong pedagogical values behind biomimetic design and research that can help improve soft and hard skills of undergrad and graduate students, and therefore better prepare them for a changing professional environment. Areas of application of biomimetic design include architectural and urban design, artifacts design, or development of bio-materials for buildings.
Mercedes’ work also encompasses quantitative assessment of architectural solutions with a focus on BIM and energy simulation tools. Students and practitioners adopting performance simulation software tools in the early stages of the design process have more opportunities to effectively and economically integrate sustainable design strategies in their projects.
Mercedes received her PhD in Bioresource Engineering at McGill University where she coined and developed the ecomimetic method, an ecologically inspired design approach to optimize resource use in buildings. This design method guides designers in the process of understanding and emulating ecosystems’ complex dynamics, some of which allow them to evolve and adapt through time or excel in capturing and using resources for instance.
I’m interested in PhD applicants that have a genuine interest in transdisciplinary environmental research and have experience in computational and digital tools (energy simulation tools). Students from natural sciences and engineering disciplines as well as from design fields are welcomed to submit their CV and a letter of interest.
Department of Architecture
Dr. Lisa Landrum is a registered architect, teacher and scholar. Her research on the dramatic agencies of architecture and architectural theory has been published, exhibited and presented widely. Lisa welcomes Ph.D. applicants with demonstrated interest in the following areas of architectural history, theory and design:
- architectural agency and representation, especially dramatic modes of representation implicit in the works and words of architects;
- representative roles of architects and architecture in dramatic literature – from Aeschylus to Ionesco, as well as contemporary experimental performances involving architectural agents, dilemmas and allusions;
- stories and myths about architectural origins from various cultures around the world;
- the reciprocity of theatre and architecture, including the performativity of architecture, the architectural history of performance spaces, and the significance of architectural settings for performance and installation art;
- interpretations of architecture in relation to painting, sculpture and film;
- interrelations of literature and architecture, including correspondences between plots and plans, intertwinings of real and fictive settings, and the role of storytelling in design;
- the role of rituals, festivals, civic events and ephemeral architecture in shaping urban environments and cultural identity;
- architecture’s interrelation with politics, democracy and social justice, including case studies of buildings and public spaces serving human rights;
- the creative role of metaphors in architecture, and the metaphoric and rhetorical role of architecture in philosophy and politics;
- phenomenological, hermeneutic and humanistic approaches to interpreting architecture, preservation and adaptive reuse projects;
- the history of architectural pedagogy and apprenticeship traditions, as well as recent approaches to teaching architecture that engage imagination and critical thinking as integral to design practice and professionalism;
- other trans-historical topics that remain central to modern architecture and contemporary practice, including ornament, space, cultural memory, corporeality, and ethical imagination.
Lisa is currently serving as an external advisor to a doctoral candidate in the History and Theory of Architecture Ph.D. program at McGill University. She has been a guest reviewer of doctoral research at McGill University and the Washington-Alexandria Architecture Center (Virginia Tech).
Lisa Landrum's complete faculty bio.
Department of City Planning
My current areas of research are on (1) the relationship between development potential and transit equity outcomes and (2) urban design practices and the changing nature of firms. I am available to supervise students with interests broadly in transportation equity, theories of professional practice, or urban design processes. I am especially interested in students with strong backgrounds in spatial analysis or qualitative research methods.
Orly Linovski's complete faculty bio.
Department of City Planning
Impacts of Urban Development / Planning and Urban Design for Social Justice My research focuses on the social impacts of urban development patterns. It addresses questions about how practices of planning and urban design have had negative impacts on the lives of communities and population, undermining their right to the city. In particular, I am interested in the roles planners and designers play in production of spaces of exclusion and segregation in processes of revitalization and gentrification.
My goal, however, is to understand how planning and design processes can enhance the development of human environments that support goals of social justice, to improve the quality of life for all inhabitants. I am seeking participatory processes that embrace the broad ranges of needs and desires within communities, and public education models that can inform debate about the future of towns, cities and regions.
I am interested in working with doctoral students, post-doctoral fellows and visiting scholars who share a critical view of planning and urban design. My study of impacts and possible future directions is currently focused on the production of age-friendly communities, cities and regions, relating the well-being of older adults to the environments that they inhabit. However, I also welcome interests related to the accommodation of difference (age, culture, etc.) within human settlements, particularly the redevelopment of downtowns and inner cities and the transformation of suburbs.
Richard Milgrom's complete faculty bio.
Department of Interior Design
PhD Studies in Building Performance Evaluation
In North America, people spend over 80% of their lives inside buildings. The indoor environmental quality (IEQ) of buildings is known to have a profound impact on human health, well‐being and cognition. Sustainably designed buildings, in particular, are considered to provide even better support for working, learning and healing, over traditionally constructed buildings. Building performance is tested mainly at the design stage through various forms of modelling and simulation. More field research is needed, however, to verify if "green" buildings actually perform in the way they are intended, once they are constructed and occupied.
Over the past decade, the Faculty of Architecture at the U of MB, is becoming internationally recognized for its capacity to undertake IEQ research, often partnering with industry and other academic partners. Dr. Shauna Mallory‐Hill’s research initiative, the Building Performance Evaluation Lab (BPEL) has been increasing its capacity to undertake field studies of buildings in operation, including the acquisition of state of the art equipment and development of protocols for measurement of thermography of structures, indoor air quality and visual, thermal, and acoustic comfort of buildings. Winnipeg's growing number of certified buildings and extreme climate provides an excellent context for testing building performance.
Dr. Mallory‐Hill is currently seeking students interested in undertaking a three to four year doctoral studies on topics concerning the building performance evaluation (BPE) of workplace and educational environments. The objective of this research is to explore and generate new knowledge around the impact of indoor environmental quality (IEQ) on human health, well‐being and cognition with the intention to improve both sustainable building and operational strategies to maximize benefits and minimize potential harm. This work involves drawing from a “toolkit” of qualitative and quantitative research methods including field measurement and monitoring, document analysis, walk‐throughs, observations, semi‐structured interviews and user satisfaction questionnaires.
PhD topics include:
- The impact of green workplace design on worker satisfaction and wellness ‐ A pre‐ and post‐move case study.
- Determining the optimal window to wall ratio size for green schools in Manitoba based on energy performance and learner outcomes.
- Closing the performance gap, examining the relationship between occupants, building management & operations on achieving IEQ building performance goals of workplace environments
- What IEQ targets should we be using for green buildings? Adjusting IEQ reference standards for the assessment of passive building systems / environmentally responsive buildings
Department of Landscape Architecture
Marcella Eaton completed her PhD in Landscape Architecture titled Philosophy and Design in Landscape Architecture in 1997. The work was an enquiry of the importance of philosophy, ethics and aesthetics to the education and practice of landscape architecture. A critical understanding of not only the discipline but also ‘culture’ and ‘nature’ is required to prepare landscape architects to lead in the collaborative, creative exercise of seeking solutions to the design of spaces for society that are appropriate today. This has led to ongoing research of culture and nature, aesthetics and ethics, and design education. She has examined ideas ranging from the structure of language to issues of representation. The fundamental questions relate to how we value the land and human/ non-human relationships in national, regional and urban contexts. Issues of global warming, traditional ecological knowledge, the environment, and multicultural values contribute to her work. She is very interested to understand why people love spaces and how design can contribute to the creation of meaningful environments.
Eaton’s has also worked with Alan Tate on both volumes of Great City Parks, in the interview process and photography.
Marcella Eaton's complete faculty bio.
Department of Landscape Architecture
The principal area of my research, publication and dissemination over the last twenty-five years has been urban or city parks. This is the one area in which I claim a particular expertise.
Other areas of interest covered by my research and teaching include:
- planning and design of urban parks
- urban morphology and public space
- history of landscape architecture in the western world
- professional practice of landscape architecture