Architecture PhD


Working at the intersection of theory, research, media and critical-spatial-practices, the MPhil/ PhD programme in Architecture supports experimental practice-led and interdisciplinary theses aiming at tangible public and social impact. The programme fosters research into the history and politics of architecture at the intersection of critical ecologies, new materialism, and digital culture. The programme is investigating the diverse ways in which architects and other cultural producers have negotiated crises associated with globalization, migration and statelessness, the hauntings of empire and the colonial present, new digital technologies, and the growing biopolitical conflicts around ecology and climate change.

Students in this programme will be encouraged to think about the role of architecture at the intersection of political, economical, social and ecological forces. One could argue, that it is impossible to think about architectural forms and practices without considering their interrelation with the climate crisis, social movements and institutional change.

We support written academic research in the history and theory of architecture, but are especially interested in practice-led research. Our programme is relevant to diverse research careers in academia, spatial practice, curation, publishing and critical conservation. We encourage establishing real world collaborations with industry-based research groups, leading design practices, policymakers, social and environmental justice groups, human rights organisations and cultural institutions.

We particularly welcome research proposals aligned with the strategic areas of research in the School of Architecture: Climate Justice, Architecture & Social Movements, Institutional Forms & Practices, Documentary Research & Digital Materialities, Interior Architecture & The Culture of Care, Feeling, Fiction, Frame and Laboratory for Design and Machine Learning. All research themes encourage interdisciplinary research with new models of collaboration between postgraduate research students, as well as academic and non-academic institutions or partners.

Research Methods

The programme emphasises the development of innovative methods of research through design and spatial analysis and their documentation in new computational and media forms.

Career Opportunities

PhD study leads to a range of opportunities. You might become a lecturer or academic researcher, designer or consultant in industry, curator in leading cultural institutions worldwide, in international institutions such as NGOs and charities. It is an opportunity for you to investigate a research question or issue in depth, enabling you to take a more reflective, more innovative role in design.


Dr. Ines Weizman
Head of PhD Programme

School of Architecture
Royal College of Art
Kensington Gore, London

School of Architecture, Royal College of Art
Postgraduate Research (PGR) Programme